Exam Board: AQA

This course is suitable for highly capable science students. At the end of this course students will be awarded a GCSE in Chemistry.

Alongside knowledge-based learning, the GCSE specification in chemistry should enable students to:

Chemistry should be studied in ways that help students to develop curiosity about the natural world, insight into how science works, and appreciation of its relevance to their everyday lives. The scope and nature of such study should be broad, coherent, practical and satisfying, and thereby encourage students to be inspired, motivated and challenged by the subject and its achievements.


The qualification is divided into two externally examined components. Each examination is 1 hour 45 minutes in duration, is available in foundation or higher tier, consists of 100 marks and contributes to 50% of a GCSE.

Chemistry Paper 1: Chemistry Topics 1–5: Atomic structure and the periodic table; Bonding, structure, and the properties of matter; Quantitative chemistry, Chemical changes; and Energy changes.

Chemistry Paper 2: Chemistry Topics 6–10: The rate and extent of chemical change; Organic chemistry; Chemical analysis, Chemistry of the atmosphere; and Using resources.

Where can it lead?

Taking three separate sciences puts you at a distinct advantage when wanting to study science beyond GCSE and provides a solid foundation for many science-related and unrelated careers such as: doctor, vet, physiotherapist, chemist, architect, surveyor, engineer, farmer, sports trainer, lawyer, journalist, computer games developer, marine biologist and electrician, to name but a few, a strong knowledge of at least one of the sciences will be highly desirable if not essential.