“Every aspect of the world today – even politics and international relations – is affected by chemistry.”   


Subject Overview

  • Chemistry investigates the elements and compounds that make up the physical world and looks at how they react together. The subject includes inorganic, organic and physical chemistry. Experiments and related concepts form an important part of the study of Chemistry.
  • This subject aims to provide a relevant course for students who will complete their study of Chemistry at this level while, at the same time, providing a foundation course for those who will continue to study Chemistry or related subjects.


  • Periodic Table and Atomic Structure
  • Chemical Bonding
  • Gas Laws, the Mole
  • Radioactivity
  • Chemical Formulas and Equations
  • Acids and Bases
  • Volumetric Analysis
  • Oxidation and Reduction
  • Rates of Reaction
  • Chemical Equilibrium
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Industrial Chemistry
  • Atmospheric Chemistry


  • Studying Chemistry will help you develop a variety of skills: not only will you learn how to approach scientific problems in a logical and analytical way but you will also develop your practical and mathematical skills.
  • During the Leaving Certificate Chemistry course you will use and develop your skills in communication, organisation, team work and logical thinking.
  • In preparation for the state examination the course also focuses on the development of effective study skills through an active learning environment.


  • Leaving Certificate Chemistry is assessed by a terminal examination paper at both higher and ordinary level. Students are also required to complete and keep a record of 28 mandatory experiments over the two years of the course.
  • Throughout the course students are encouraged to reflect on their own learning (with the help of questionnaires, tests, feedback) and take responsibility for their own learning by working independently (experiments, short presentations, etc.).
  • Assessment also includes topic tests, mock examinations and constant reference to past papers and marking schemes.

Career Prospects

  • Chemistry forms an essential part of all courses in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, and engineering. The syllabus consists of approximately 70% pure Chemistry (theories and concepts) while the remaining 30% deals with the social and applied aspects of Chemistry.
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