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Chemistry Department

Learning Resources - Courses in S1, S2 and S3 - Qualifications in S4, S5 and S6 - Meet the Staff - Links - Photo Galleries

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S5 pupils in chemistry

Chemistry helps us understand the world around us by looking at how substances interact with each other.  In everyday life, Chemistry is used to make new substances by carrying out chemical reactions.  Chemists help provide us with essential products for example, plastics, fuels, metals, dyes, flavourings for foods and medicines.

On the one hand, it is linked with physics through physical chemistry, and on the other with biology through biochemistry. Chemistry links with many of the other subjects which are studied at school.

On leaving school, the chemistry studied will help an understanding of our ever-changing technological world. It is also necessary for those following a career in many different areas.

S2 science pupils doing an experimentThe Chemistry Course in S1, S2 and S3

From S1 until the end of S3, all pupils will experience a broad general education where they will work across the experiences and outcomes of Curriculum for Excellence.

In S1 and S2, all pupils currently have three periods of Science every week, which covers experiences and outcomes relating to all three sciences: Biology, Chemistry and Physics. You can find out more on the S1 and S2 science webpage.

In S3, pupils are given the opportunity to choose which two of the Sciences they wish to specialise in. For full details of the choices available, see the S3 Coursing Handbook.  Courses in S3 will deliver experiences and outcomes, which will prepare pupils for appropriate National Qualifications in S4. 

In the S3 chemistry course, the key areas pupils will study are:

  • Chemical Changes and Structure – e.g. reactions, rate and acids
  • Nature’s Chemistry – e.g. fuels and their chemical reactions
  • Chemistry in Society – e.g. metals, corrosion and plastics

Pupils will be working on Experiences and Outcomes at Third and Fourth Level. This course prepares pupils for qualifications in Chemistry at National 4 or National 5 in S4.

Chemistry courses in S4, S5 and S6

In the Senior phase, pupils work on courses that lead towards National Qualifications at the end of S4, S5 and S6.

S5 chemistry with a Bunsen burnerIn S4, pupils can choose to take four periods per week of Chemistry. For full details of the courses available, see the S4 Coursing Handbook. Courses currently offered in the Chemistry department in S4 lead to awards in:

  • Chemistry at National 3, National 4 and National 5 levels

The key areas pupils will study are:

  • Chemical Changes and Structure – e.g. rates of reactions, atomic structure, acids and bases
  • Nature’s Chemistry – e.g. energy from fuels, homologous series
  • Chemistry in Society – e.g. metals, plastics, energy changes

In studying these key areas pupils will aim to become successful learners by taking responsibility for their own learning. A variety of teaching strategies will be used, including active and collaborative learning as well as giving pupils the opportunity to develop their scientific inquiry skills. 

This course prepares pupils for qualifications in Chemistry at National 4 or National 5 in S4.

In S5 and S6, pupils can choose to take courses in the Chemistry department. Each course takes five periods per week. For full details of the courses available, see the S5/6 Coursing Handbook. Courses currently offered in the Chemistry department in S5 and S6 lead to awards in:

  • Chemistry at National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher levels.

Meet the Staff

Miss J L Cunningham
Miss J L Cunningham,
Principal Teacher (Curriculum) (Sciences)
Mr L O'Thy
Mr L O'Thy,
Teacher of Chemistry
Miss H Lyall
Miss H Lyall,
Teacher of Chemistry
Miss C Philp
Miss C Philp
Depute Head Teacher
Teacher of Chemistry
Mrs C McKimmie
Mrs C McKimmie,
Principal Teacher
(Guidance/Pupil Support)
Teacher of Chemistry

Also on this website...

Photo Galleries of Department Events:

Photographs: all newbattlehigh's public flickr photographs tagged with Chemistry

External Links

  • BBC Bitesize revision website: National 4, National 5, Higher
  • The SCHOLAR Programme Login Page - all pupils studying Chemistry at Higher or Advanced Higher levels will have been automatically registered for SCHOLAR. If you do not know your username (which is your SQA candidate number) or password, your class teacher should be able to help you.