reflections on 27/5/2016 exams

OCR Unit 1 (legacy)

This was a nice paper with no horrible twists – expect grade boundaries something like:

A – 50, B – 45, C – 40, D – 35, E – 29

AQA Paper 1 (new spec)

This was an interesting and challenging exam, and a vast improvement on the specimen paper. The content was fair but many of the questions were not straightforward, and it was very long – I would expect most students would have really struggled to finish the paper in 90 minutes. I was expecting lots of practical questions – as there were – but I was not expecting such an emphasis on Atomic Structure – there was no Energetics at all and just one mark on Equilibria – topics to revise again for Paper 2. It was certainly a very tough introduction to the new specification.

The mark breakdown by Topic was 25.5 (Topic 1), 29 (Topic 2), 14.5 (Topic 3), 0 (Topic 4), 1 (Topic 5), 10 (Topic 6)

Grade boundaries will not be published for individual papers but based on this paper I would expect them to be low – along the lines of:

A – 58, B – 51, C – 44, D – 37, E – 30

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Good luck with your exams

Hi all

Good luck with your exams this year.

I have uploaded three practice papers for the new AS AQA course – try them out – I will keep adding more as the weeks go on

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New Resources Available

To all teachers and students of A-level Chemistry,

Happy New Year!

I’ve had some technical trouble with the site over the last few weeks which has prevented me from uploading any new resources. That’s all sorted out now, and there are a number of new resources on the site, designed with the new AS AQA course in mind.

I hope they are useful and sorry for the delay.



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Welcome to the start of the academic year 2015-6!

Dear teachers and students,

I hope that you have had an enjoyable and restful summer break and that you are ready for the new year.

As you will know, the new AS-level Specifications start this term so there is a lot of updating to do!

As you will have realised, I have been teaching OCR Chemistry A for the last few years at my school, which means I have been largely focusing on OCR resources. We are continuing with the final year of the A2 course so you will not see much change, with the resources being gradually uploaded as the year goes on. I’ll leave the existing OCR AS resources on the site throughout the year, as I have done with all the AQA resources in recent years.

However we have decided to switch back to AQA for the new AS and A-level Specifications this year – the content is almost identical but AQA have separated the Inorganic from the Organic in their two papers, which I think makes the exams easier to prepare and revise for. So over the course of the year I will be developing a new set of notes and resources with the new AQA course in mind. I hope you find them useful.

If you are following the OCR A new specification, you’ll still find the resources very relevant I think – as I said the two specifications are almost identical.

Good luck with the year ahead!

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Welcome to the new academic year 2014-5

Welcome back everyone!

I’ve started working on the site again as the new academic year gets under way – sorry for the delay in replying to any questions.

As usual, AQA resources will remain uploaded for the duration of the year – I have not done much work on these recently but they are still all valid.

Tests for the OCR specification, and answers to all the other OCR resources, will be uploaded gradually over the year as my students complete them. If you urgently need any in advance drop me an email and I will send them to you. The first answers are currently being uploaded.

Over the course of the year I’m planning to write a mark scheme for the OCR Unit 1 and 2 summary packs and create summary packs for Units 4 and 5. I’ll also add a few more class exercises.

Good luck with the year ahead!

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April 2014 update

Hi everyone

Good luck with your upcoming exams.

I’ve made my final round of updates to the OCR section of the site. The final resources are now uploaded.

Please note a new resource being uploaded for the first time this year – additional past paper questions for OCR Units 1, 2, 4 and 5 – and there are a lot of them!

Basically the old specification started in 2001 before being replaced in 2010 by the current specification. I used the questions from 2004 – 2007 for the homeworks and tests, which leaves 2001 – 2003 and 2008 – 2010. These past paper packs contain all questions from these years which are still relevant. The new papers often copy them shamelessly so they are definitely worth doing!

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Christmas 2013 update

Hello Chemistry students and teachers,

I’ve now resolved the technical problems I was having and all links should now be working.

My main focus this year has been on OCR A2 rescources for F324 and F325, and you’ll see lots more for these units now. I’ll upload a few more before Christmas and more again in the new year, by which time all resources for modules 4.1, 4.2, 5.1, 5.2.1 and 5.2.2 should be fully accessible.

Mark schemes and tests are made available as soon as the deadline for my own students to hand them in has passed. Everything will be available by the middle of April, with most being uploaded long before that.

Enjoy the Christmas break.

Best wishes


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