Chemistry is all around us and touches all aspects of our lives. We aim to make Chemistry relevant to our students, to engage them in a vast subject, and inspire their desire to want to know more.

There are many exciting careers that use the skills taught in science. In Years 10 to 11, pupils are taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics separately by subject specialists within the outstanding teaching environment of our Maths & Science Centre.


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GCSE - Years 9, 10 and 11

The GCSE course is followed from the start of Year 9 in order to give time to explore the subject in as practical and relevant way as possible.

What will I learn?

All students in Years 9 to 11 study GCSEs administered by the AQA exam board. The course enables students to gain three GCSE qualifications in the separate sciences or two GCSEs in Science and Additional Science, dependent on their ability in the sciences.  Entry requirements for studying science at A level are included under each science subject.

How is the course structured and assessed?

All students are taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics throughout Years 9, 10 and 11. Students will learn about the importance of Chemistry in the world around them: how this affects the environment, way of tackling this and the properties and uses of materials. The course develops an understanding of chemical reactions and processes, as well as how these are used to refine natural resources. An appreciation of sustainability and modernising industrial process is developed. Students will develop analytical and investigative skills through experimental work and will learn to compare and critique real data. Students will find that the atomic theories studied will support their studies in Physics and the environmental Chemistry and reactions studied will support their learning in the other sciences.

The key aims of these Science courses include: 

  • Acquire scientific knowledge and understanding. 
  • Be able to apply one’s scientific knowledge and understanding. 
  • Sustain and develop an enjoyment and interest in the scientific world. 
  • Appreciate the practical nature of science, acquiring experimental skills based on correct and safe laboratory techniques. 
  • Appreciate the importance of accurate experimental work and reporting of scientific methods. 
  • Develop a logical approach to problem-solving in a wider context. 
  • Evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of real-life applications of science. 
  • Prepare pupils for a more advanced course in the three Sciences. 
A Level Years 12 & 13

It is expected that you will have achieved a minimum of grade 7 in GCSE/IGCSE Chemistry or grades 7-7 in Science Double Award Science with acceptable performance in the Chemistry paper, although 6 grades do not necessarily preclude entry.

What will I learn?

The qualification integrates theory and relevant practical work, which are developed at different levels throughout the course.

In Physical Chemistry, you will study Equilibria, Kinetics and Energetics of chemical reactions with a more quantitative approach in the second year. Inorganic chemistry focuses on the properties and reactions of Group 2, and Group 7 elements. Theory and understanding of Atomic Structure and Bonding are used to explain the trends of these properties; transition metal chemistry is encountered in the second year. Organic chemistry focuses on key functional groups and their reactions. In the second year, these are linked together to study synthetic chemistry. In the first year, students have attended a synthesis and analysis workshop at Bath University and lectures hosted by the RSC, as well as further workshops in Bristol.

How is the course assessed?

The A Level is assessed at the end of the second year on the whole course with two exam papers, practical competency is demonstrated throughout the course.

Where next?