Chemistry is the study of matter, its properties, how and why substances combine or separate to form other substances, and how substances interact with energy. Many people think of chemists as being white-coated scientists mixing strange liquids in a laboratory, but the truth is we are all chemists. Understanding basic chemistry concepts is important for almost every profession. Chemistry is part of everything in our lives.
Every material in existence is made up of matter — even our own bodies. Chemistry is involved in everything we do, from growing and cooking food to cleaning our homes and bodies to launching a space shuttle. Chemistry is one of the physical sciences that help us to describe and explain our world.
At International Advanced Level our students study all five branches of chemistry.
- Analytical chemistry uses qualitative and quantitative observation to identify and measure the physical and chemical properties of substances. In a sense, all chemistry is analytical.
- Physical chemistry combines chemistry with physics. Physical chemists study how matter and energy interact. Thermodynamics and quantum mechanics are two of the important branches of physical chemistry.
- Organic chemistry specifically studies compounds that contain the element carbon. Carbon has many unique properties that allow it to form complex chemical bonds and very large molecules. Organic chemistry is known as the “Chemistry of Life” because all of the molecules that make up living tissue have carbon as part of their makeup.
- Inorganic chemistry studies materials such as metals and gases that do not have carbon as part of their makeup.
- Biochemistry is the study of chemical processes that occur within living organisms.
The aims and objectives of this qualifications are to enable students to develop:
- essential knowledge and understanding of different areas of the subject and how they relate to each other.
- a deep appreciation of the skills, knowledge and understanding of scientific methods
- competence and confidence in a variety of practical, mathematical and problem-solving skills.
- their interest in and enthusiasm for the subject, including developing an interest in further study and careers associated with the subject.
The content of the International Advanced Level in Chemistry is relevant for students who have achieved a GCSE or IGCSE in Chemistry and who want to study the subject at a higher level. Assessment consists of three externally assessed written papers at the end of the first year of the course. The second year of the course ends with three further written papers that are also externally assessed.
During the course, students will develop their knowledge and understanding of chemistry by applying the concepts in this specification to a range of different problems, set in a variety of contexts. Students will need to apply mathematical skills to the problems. Students will also develop their practical skills. This course includes 16 core practical activities plus additional practical activities to improve practical skills, help in the understanding of the concepts covered and to increase their enthusiasm for the subject.
Why study Chemistry at XIC?
At Xabia International College, all the sciences are taught by specialist teachers who are highly qualified in their field. The Advanced Level courses are taught in very small classes which allows the teachers to give individual attention and support to each student. This is reflected in the excellent exam results we achieve.
Chemistry, in particular, is a very practical science subject and students regularly carry our experiments using many different laboratory techniques.
Our students progress to further education courses in universities all over the world and we are very proud of their successes