North Independent Secondary School of the Year 2020 North Independent Secondary School of the Year 2021


Why study chemistry?

Chemistry is an ever expanding discipline, and while the nature of atoms and their interactions have remained unchanged since the dawn of time, our understanding of the laws that govern these interactions and the implications of this on our everyday lives is forever moving forwards.

One in every five pounds in the UK economy is dependent on developments in chemistry research, supporting over 6 million jobs according to a report commissioned by the Royal Society of Chemistry. We as a country need excellent chemists, and studying A-level chemistry at GSAL will give you a taste of the plethora of ways in which this exciting subject touches our lives. Whether this takes you on to study chemistry further, or helps open other doors, A-level Chemistry is the ideal choice for those who have enjoyed the challenge of their GCSE course.

Over the two years we will develop ideas introduced at GCSE, expanding into the three broad disciplines of organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry and physical chemistry. Practical work forms a fundamental part of what we do, and we use our in-house lab book of 30 varied practicals to expand on the 12 compulsory experiments required at this level, allowing students to develop confidence with a wide range of techniques both practical and analytical.

A suitable candidate will need to be confident with all that they studied at GCSE, particularly the mathematical aspects. Chemistry is considered by some to be one of the most challenging subjects, but if you flourished at GCSE then A-level Chemistry will reward you with a qualification that holds great currency both with universities and employers.

What our students say

“Chemistry is a nicely challenging subject- the course is well made in the fact that it builds you up bit by bit. Eventually knowledge learnt from earlier parts in the course join up with a new topic to further your understanding and enjoyment as a whole.” Christian 

“Studying chemistry takes a lot of commitment and is rather challenging, but the support provided by the staff makes the subject much easier to comprehend and enjoy.” Julia 

“I really enjoy studying chemistry because it provides wonderful cross-curricular links to the other sciences, contributing to the overall understanding of science. Chemistry provides a fantastic, detailed understanding of our world on a molecular level, from the mechanisms behind reactions that affect our daily lives, to the structures that constitute the foundations of the molecules that construct our world.” Rohan 

“Chemistry allows us to understand the fundamental principles of science. I believe that it allows us as scientists to piece together and understand the meaning of many concepts.” Aimee

“Chemistry allows you to understand the world around you: why things behave and exist the way they do. It’s fascinating. The chemistry department is a great team- everything is explained clearly and thanks to studying chemistry I feel like I have a less clouded view of the world around me.” Julia

Entry requirements

8,7 in double award science or 7,7 if studying maths A-level, or 7 in chemistry. 7 in maths.


Potential courses

  • Biochemistry
  • Chemical engineering
  • Environmental science
  • Forensics
  • Green chemistry
  • Materials science
  • Medicinal chemistry
  • Pharmacology
  • Toxicology

Potential careers

  • Research
  • Industrial scientist
  • Finance
  • Management
  • Human Resources
  • Marketing
  • Teaching
  • Information Technology

The A-level course

% of A-levelContent
Unit 135Inorganic chemistry, relevant physical chemistry and relevant practical skills 2 hour written paper, 105 marks
Unit 235Organic chemistry, relevant physical chemistry and relevant practical skills 2 hour written paper, 105 marks
Unit 330Any content and any practical skills 2 hour written paper, 90 marks

Or, if you prefer to chat to someone please call our admissions team. For Senior School call 0113 228 5121 and for Primary School call 0113 228 5113.