Why Study A Level Chemistry (International)?

‘Chemistry is necessarily an experimental science: its conclusions are drawn from data, and its principles supported by evidence from facts.’ Michael Faraday.

Chemistry is everywhere; the world around us is filled with materials that have been discovered, developed and tested by chemists, such as medicines, foods, fuels, plastics, fertilisers and fabrics. An understanding of the subject can help you answer many questions about everyday life! Why are plants green? How does soap clean? What makes baked goods rise? Why do sauces thicken? Chemistry is also fun! Chemistry experiments can glow in the dark, change colour, produce bubbles, change state and go boom!

Chemistry is the study of matter and energy and how they interact under different conditions and in a variety of settings. This course covers the major topics in chemistry, including molar calculations, structure and bonding, energetics, rates, equilibria, group chemistry, transition metals and a range of organic chemistry; as well as associated experimental skills. As it is a science subject, you will learn how to be objective, analytical, methodical, process and in turn solve problems. You can apply these skills outside academia, and the study of chemistry can help you to understand current events including news about petrol, environmental issues, pollution, health and product scares and more.

Chemistry is often referred to as the ‘central science’ because it helps to connect other sciences to one other, such as Biology, Physics, Geology, Environmental Science, Medicine and Engineering. A Level Chemistry is described as a ‘facilitating’ subject because it allows a wide range of options for degree study. There are many chemistry-related degrees available, including Analytical Chemistry, Biochemistry, Environmental Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physical Chemistry and Polymer and Materials Chemistry. These degrees can in turn lead to a range of careers as varied as medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, forensic chemistry, geochemistry, R & D management, chemical engineering, petroleum engineering, food development, perfumery and waste management.

Note that our experienced University Services Adviser can advise on A Level courses and all aspects of university entrance including application support and references.


Student Through to Final Round of International Chemistry Olympiad

What do I Need to Know to Enrol?

A Level Chemistry (International), which is available only to students based outside the UK, builds directly on the work you will have done for IGCSE or local equivalent in the subject. Grade B or 6 at IGCSE or equivalent is required before starting on the A Level. Due to the knowledge of Mathematics required, we also require that you have Grade B or 6 in Maths at IGCSE or equivalent before embarking on this subject. Wolsey Hall offers all the relevant IGCSE courses should you require further knowledge. All students undertaking Wolsey Hall A levels must also have IGCSE in English Language at Grade C or 4.

A Level Entry Requirements

The Syllabus and Exam

This course prepares you for the Edexcel International A Level Chemistry syllabus XCH11 (for AS) and YCH11 (for the full A Level, AS + A2). Exams take place in January, June and October.

For the AS in Chemistry, you will take:

Paper 1: Structure, Bonding and Introduction to Organic Chemistry (code WCH11/01) worth 40% of the AS grade and 20% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 30 minutes)

Paper 2: Energetics, Group Chemistry, Halogenoalkanes and Alcohols (code WCH12/01) worth 40% of the AS grade and 20% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 30 minutes)

Paper 3: Practical Skills in Chemistry I (code WCH13/01) worth 20% of the AS grade and 10% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 20 minutes)

For the A2 in Chemistry, you will take:

Paper 4: Rates, Equilibria and Further Organic Chemistry (code WCH14/01) worth 40% of the A2 grade and 20% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 45 minutes)

Paper 5: Transition Metals and Organic Nitrogen Chemistry (code WCH15/01) worth 40% of the A2 grade and 20% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 45 minutes)

Paper 6: Practical Skills in Chemistry II (code WCH16/01) worth 20% of the A2 grade and 10% of the overall A Level grade. (1 hour and 20 minutes)

You will not be expected to carry out experiments during the exams. But you are expected to develop your experimental skills and a knowledge and understanding of practical techniques.

You can do this by using the links to videos, worksheets, online tutorials and notes about the core practicals provided in your course. Our course materials have been developed with the home student in mind, ensuring that you understand how the practicals would be carried out in a laboratory environment.


The new AS will be examined for the first time in 2019. The new A2 will be examined for the first time in 2020.

A Level Course Information

Course Fee

The fee for Edexcel A Level Chemistry is £795 via instalments. There is a discount of 5% for payment in full reducing the fee to £755.

Read more about our fees and discounts.

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