The topics covered in this course are examined on papers 1 and 3 of both OCR and AQA A Level chemistry. The content focuses on topics that we know feature heavily on examinations, or are often poorly understood. All relevant practical activities are also explored for each of the topics covered.
Structure of the Day
The workshop is delivered across four sessions, with breaks for refreshments and lunch in between. Each session starts with a short presentation highlighting all the key content, followed by small group sessions where students can practise applying their knowledge to exam style situations. This format allows students to refresh their knowledge before testing it, and offers students the opportunity to ask questions in smaller groups as they work through the topics. We also build time into the day for students to ask questions on a one to one basis, this is to ensure that students leave us with a thorough understanding of the topics studied.
A detailed break down of the day and the topics covered in each session is given below. If you have any queries please don't hesitate to contact us.
Please see our testimonials page for feedback from previous students.
Central Teaching Laboratories
University of Liverpool
9.30am –Registration and welcome
10 am – Session 1: Acids, bases and buffers
11.15 am – Break (tutors available for individual questions)
11.30 am – Session 2: Transition elements and redox titrations
12.45 pm – Lunch break
1.15 pm – 2.30 pm – Session 3: Electrode potentials and fuel cells
2.30 pm – Break (tutors available for individual questions)
2.45 pm - 4 pm – Session 4: Thermodynamics
4 pm-5 pm - Tutors available for individual questions
This session tackles the complex topic of acids, bases and buffers. This is often disliked by many students due to the wide variety of calculations that it covers, however many higher level questions often appear in examinations so it is important students are comfortable applying the content to novel situations. We aim to condense the topic into manageable chunks, giving students the confidence to approach even the A/A* standard questions and gain maximum marks.
The second session focuses on the transition elements, including their complexes and reactions. We will also review isomers of complexes and the origins of colour. The session also spends quite some time reviewing redox titration calculations in a variety of contexts, such as determining the molecular weight of an acid, percentage purity or percentage by mass. Redox titrations are often featured on examination papers so maximising marks here is vital.
This session covers electrode potentials and cells, including the IUPAC convention for writing half equations for cells and standard cell notation. Students will also ensure they are comfortable calculating the EMF of cells and predicting the direction of cell reactions using standard electrode potentials. Students will then relate their knowledge to fuels cells and their commercial applications.
The final session covers thermodynamics, including entropy and Gibbs Free energy, calorimetry, and Born Haber cycles. Students will also review Hess cycles in order to ensure they can properly approach calculations around Gibbs Free energy. Students often find this topic tricky at first, particularly when using Gibbs Free energy to predict the feasibility of reactions, but we aim to ensure students can approach the full range of questions with confidence.