Course ID
A Level (Chemistry) and IGCSE (Chemistry, Science Double Award)

Introduction to the Chemistry Department

Chemistry is very much a practical subject at Wolverhampton Grammar School and the Department aims to challenge and motivate students using laboratory work wherever possible.

The Department includes teaching staff and a full time technician, they are:

  • Andrew Carey (Head of Department)
  • John Johnson
  • Helen David
  • Ryan Pounder
  • Charlotte Fendek

The Department has dedicated laboratories and facilities. Students also benefit from trips to venues including ThinkTank in Birmingham, the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge and Sixth Form lectures at the University of Birmingham.

There are a number of extra and co-curricular activities to be involved in including the Lower Sixth Cambridge Chemistry Challenge and Upper Sixth Chemistry Olympiad. The Chemistry Department also organises extra curricular activities for younger year groups, providing the perfect opportunity for you to demonstrate your leadership and mentoring skills to others. Sixth Formers can also enjoy masterclasses and a range of Sixth Form lectures at University of Birmingham.

Students can study single sciences ie biology, chemistry and physics at GCSE or the Science Double Award, which counts as two GCSEs.

Have you ever wondered what is in shampoo or a bottle of water? Chemistry will give students the opportunity to find out. Chemistry is about understanding the world around us from the smallest particles up to the entire universe and everything in between. By understanding about the properties of substances and how atoms can be joined together to make different things, chemists have produced a huge range of materials. These materials range from different types of metals and plastics, detergents in your kitchen, fibres and colours in your clothes, to painkillers and anti-cancer medicines.

The next two years will provide students with an interesting, informative and enjoyable course that will give a sound basis for work in Chemistry at a more advanced level. They will have an understanding of the chemical nature of the world in which we live and of scientific topics discussed, often incorrectly, in the media. The course follows a linear structure.

What the student will learn

  • Acids, bases and salts.
  • Bonding and structure.
  • The Periodic Table.
  • Rates of reaction.
  • States of matter.
  • Atomic structure.
  • Chemical reactions and related calculations.
  • Air and water.
  • Rusting.
  • Properties and uses of metals.
  • The reactivity series.
  • Crude oil and fuels.
  • Obtaining other useful substances from crude oil.
  • Polymers.
  • Exothermic and endothermic reactions.
  • Energy changes in chemical reactions.
  • Electrolysis.
  • Analysing substances.
  • The production of ammonia.

How the student will be assessed


Paper 1



1 hour and 30 minutes



  • Structured and open questions
  • 90 marks – 50%
  • Weighted more to assessment of knowledge, understanding and application

Paper 2 
1 hour and 30 minutes 
  • Structured and open questions
  • 90 marks – 50%
  • Includes a higher proportion of questions testing skills


A Level Chemistry is a popular choice at Wolverhampton Grammar School. It suits students who are logical, methodical and who like patterns. Equally it suits students who like practical work, who like proving ideas and theories through real experience and empirical research.

Chemistry A Level naturally fits closely with Biology, Physics, Mathematics and there are good reasons why it goes well with Geography, Computing, Psychology and others.  Chemistry is very much a practical subject at Wolverhampton Grammar  School and the department aims to challenge and motivate students using  laboratory work as much as possible. Purpose built laboratories and dedicated  Technician staff along with expert teachers ensure you have all the facilities  and expertise required to make the most of this challenging subject.


Paper 1

  • Advanced inorganic and physical chemistry
  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 30% of A Level

Paper 2

  • Advanced organic and physical chemistry
  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 30% of A Level

Paper 3

  • General and practical principles in chemistry
  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 40% of A Level

Students from Wolverhampton Grammar School have gone on to a wide range of careers and HE courses, including Pharmacy; Chemical Engineering; Healthcare and Forensic Science; Pharmacology and Toxicology You must have A level Chemistry if you want to become a doctor or a vet and a number of Chemistry graduates from School are now enjoying successful careers in the UK and overseas.

If you are thinking about Chemistry as one of your options but are unsure about it in any way, then discuss the matter with your Chemistry teacher or Mr Carey, Head of Department.

For further details have a look at the EDEXCEL Chemistry website:

Course Downloads:

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