Kenilworth School

Chemistry Preparation

A-Level preparation




Books you can buy to prepare for A-Level Chemistry:

  • We follow the Edexcel specification and you will be given a textbook at the beginning of the course.
  • We will also be selling various books and revision guides at the start of the course.
  • The two books below will also be available to buy at the start of the course but you may wish to use this time to buy and read them prior to September.


  1. “Head start to A-Level Chemistry” (CGP)Bridges the gap between GCSE and A-Level with study notes, examples and questions plus introductions to key A-Level topics.

(Available on Kindle or as paperback - If out of stock on Amazon there are plenty of other websites this can be purchased from)


  1. “Essential Maths skills” (CGP)For those students who may require more mathematical support. With 20% of the A-Level course being maths based this book covers all the key skills required.

(Available on Kindle or as paperback - If out of stock on Amazon there are plenty of other websites this can be purchased from)



Books you can buy for interest and to ignite your passion in Chemistry:

  1. “Nature’s building blocks” (John Emsley)


  1. A is for Arsenic: the poisons of Agatha Christie” (Kathryn Harkup)


  1. “Molecules of murder” (John Emsley) – An RSC publication


  1. “The Chemistry Book” (Derek B Lowe)



Websites for information, interest and to ignite your passion:

  1. “Chemistry world” - This has a really good selection of podcasts including a book club discussing popular science books and podcasts about each element.  It also has articles about current research in Chemistry.


  1. “Royal society of Chemistry” – Journals, books, databases along with the latest research.


  1. “icould” – Real stories to inspire your career. An array of useful career guidance to start thinking about where you’re A-Levels might take you


  1. “RSC Periodic Table” – Everything you need to know about the Periodic Table and the elements within it


  1. “Molecule of the month” – A huge data base of hundreds of molecules, written by chemists with fascinating  information and facts about each molecule

Websites for a head start:

  1. “Chemguide” – One of the best A-Level Chemistry websites for clear, concise explanations


  1. “Khan Academy” clips – Via YouTube



Fascinating and though-provoking videos and lectures:

  1. “TED talks” – fascinating talks on any subject to stir your curiosity

[Also available via YouTube]


Specifically applicable are:

-“Incredible chemistry powering your smart phone”

-“What sticky sea creatures can teach us about making glue”


  1. “The Christmas lectures” – Started by Michael Faraday in 1825 and now broadcast every year on National television; the UK’s flagship science series



Key GCSE areas to revise, understand and review to prepare for the early A-Level topics:


  1. Structure of the atom and electron configurations
  2. Covalent and ionic bonding
  3. Simple covalent molecules, their structure and their properties
  4. Giant ionic lattices, their structure and their properties
  5. Trends in reactivity down group 1 and 7
  6. Moles and mole calculations
  7. Titrations and titration calculations
  8. Calculating the maximum masses of products in a chemical reaction
  9. Calculating volumes and moles of gases
  10. Writing chemical formulae for any inorganic compound (using charges of cation and anion)