AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
AM 06
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Chemistry AM06
(Available in September)
Paper 1 (3 hours) + Paper II (3 hours) + Paper III (3 hours)
Chemistry is a core science and its importance to human well-being and
continued development cannot be over-emphasised. The study of chemistry at
this level requires a sound appreciation of basic principles without which it is
difficult to understand the many facts of the science. Indeed, the syllabus stresses
the principles, knowledge of which being considered to be of even greater
importance than memorization of chemical facts. The syllabus assumes a
knowledge of chemistry at a level equivalent to that defined by the Secondary
Education Certificate syllabus.
The Examination
The examination consists of two written papers and a practical paper. Each of the
three papers is of three hours’ duration.
Paper I consists of six to ten compulsory structured questions and carries 40% of
the total score. Students will write their answers on the examination paper in the
spaces provided.
Paper II consists of two sections each containing four extended response
questions. Five questions are to be answered from this paper, two questions from
each section and any one other. This paper carries 40% of the total score.
Paper III is a practical examination. This is an open book examination and
candidates may use any printed material which assists them in their work. This
paper carries 20% of the total score.
Candidates may use an electronic calculator in all parts of the examination.
Familiarity with Periodic Table
Candidates are expected to be familiar with the structure of the Periodic Table
and the group affiliation of each element with atomic number from 1 to 30.
However, a copy of the Periodic Table will be provided for Paper II of the
examination although not for Paper I. Relative atomic masses will always be given
where necessary.
Mathematical skills
In order to understand certain concepts required by the syllabus, candidates will
need to be able to:
Recognise and use expressions in decimal and standard form; use ratios,
fractions and percentages and find arithmetic means; make estimates of
results; use an appropriate number of significant figures; use calculators to
find and use xy, x, 1/x, log10 x.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Change the subject of an equation; substitute numerical values into
algebraic equations using units for physical quantities; use logarithms in
relation to quantities which range over several orders of magnitude.
Appreciate angles and shapes in regular two and three dimensional
structures and to represent three dimensional forms in two dimensions;
understand the symmetry of two dimensional and three dimensional
Plot two variables from given data; understand that y = mx + c represents a
linear relationship and be able to determine the slope and intercept of a
line; draw and use the slope of a tangent to a curve as a measure of rate of
Language skills
Candidates are reminded of the importance of the use of good English in
answering questions in the examination. In essay-type answers and also where
calculations are involved, orderly and detailed presentation will be rewarded.
Atomic Structure
The fundamental particles: protons, electrons and neutrons, their charges
and relative masses.
The nucleus of the atom. Proton (or atomic) number and nucleon (or mass)
number. Isotopes and relative atomic masses. The carbon-12 scale. Use of
isotopes as tracers in mechanistic studies exemplified by the use of O18 in
Radioactivity: alpha and beta particles and gamma rays.
Calculations requiring use of the equation for radioactive decay will not be
set. Nuclear equations. Uses and application of radioactivity including a
more detailed account of carbon dating.
Introductory treatment of quantised energy levels in atoms: evidence from
atomic spectra; s, p and d orbitals; prediction of electronic configuration of
isolated atoms of elements H to Kr using 1s, 2s, 2p notation and electronsin-boxes notation using the ‘building –up’ (aufbau) principle. Classification
of elements into periods, groups and ‘blocks’, including the transition
elements. Shapes of s and p orbitals. Hybridised orbitals. Questions on
interpretation of atomic spectra will not be set.
Definition of ionisation energies and electron affinity and relation to
electronic configuration. Variation of ionisation energies across a period
and down a group.
An elementary treatment of mass spectrometry: use of mass spectrometer
to determine the relative atomic mass (see also §2.9).
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Electronic Theory and Chemical Bonding.
The ionic (electrovalent), covalent and co-ordinate (or dative) bond.
Electronegativity. Intermediate bonding: ion polarisation and bond
polarisation. Electrical dipoles in molecules (qualitative treatment only).
Polar covalent bonds which may, or may not, give rise to molecules with a
permanent dipole.
Nature of forces in bonding.
bonding. Multiple bonding.
Delocalisation of electrons.
Metallic bonding (electron sea model) and use of model to account for
malleability, ductility and thermal and electrical conductivity.
Lattice structures of NaCl and CsCl as typical ionic solids. Coordination
Simple shapes of molecules and ions explained on the basis of the valence
shell electron pair repulsion (VSEPR) theory.
Molecular crystals, e.g. iodine, and macromolecular structures, e.g. carbon
(diamond), carbon (graphite) and silicon(IV) oxide; relationship between
structure and physical properties.
Intermolecular forces: hydrogen bonding, dipole-dipole interactions and van
der Waals forces (also known as induced dipole-induced dipole forces).
Effects of these forces on specific properties of molecular compounds: e.g.
boiling points of simple hydrides in Groups 4, 5, 6 and 7; formation of
carboxylic acid dimers.
Mass spectrometer as a method of determining molecular structure:
interpretation of simple mass spectra involving only singly charged ions;
the molecular (parent) ion and fragment ions.
States and Quantity of Matter
The ideal gas law and its use in the determination of relative molecular
mass for gases and volatile liquids: use of gas syringe.
Dalton’s Law of Partial Pressures; diffusion and effusion (Graham’s Law will
not be examined).
Kinetic theory of gases (treated qualitatively).
Real gases and deviations from ideality. Familiarity with van der Waals
equation will be assumed although no numerical questions will be set.
Comparison between ionic and covalent
Distribution of molecular
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Vapour pressure and saturation vapour pressure; vaporisation and fusion in
terms of the kinetic molecular model.
Moles of substance. Concentration in terms of moles dm-3 or mol L-1; mass
concentration in terms of g dm-3 or g L-1. Volume measured in dm3 or L and
cm3 or mL. Avogadro constant. Empirical and molecular formulae; chemical
equations, both full and ionic and the use of these equations in calculations
on reacting substances in terms of amounts and concentrations measured
in moles and mol dm-3 respectively. Concept of limiting reagent. Percentage
yield. Acid-base and redox reactions in titrimetry. Back titration.
Changes of energy accompanying phase changes and chemical changes.
Energy level diagrams. Joule (J) as the unit of energy.
Standard enthalpy change of reaction, formation, atomisation, ionization,
combustion, solution (or dissolution), neutralisation and solvation including
hydration. Electron affinity including discussion of first and second
electron affinity for dinegative ions. Bond enthalpy terms: distinction from
bond dissociation enthalpies; lattice enthalpies; enthalpies of solution and
relation to lattice enthalpy and enthalpies of hydration.
Hess’s law and its use in simple calculations. Born-Haber cycle.
Comparison between theoretical and experimental values of enthalpy
change and interpretation in terms of structure and bonding.
Calorimetry: determination of enthalpy change (heat) of neutralization,
solution and reaction. Calorific value of fuels and food. Thermometric
Concept of system and its surroundings. Entropy, Gibbs free energy and
spontaneity of chemical change. Familiarity and use of the relationship
between free energy, enthalpy and entropy, namely, G = H - TS. Kinetic
versus thermodynamic stability.
Phase Equilibria
Phase changes for one-component systems: H2O, CO2. Pressure-temperature
phase diagrams and boiling, melting and triple points. Critical temperature
and supercritical fluids; use of supercritical fluids as solvents.
Two-component systems: mixtures of two miscible liquids and Raoult’s
Law. Pressure-composition and temperature-composition diagrams.
Deviations from Raoult’s Law. Azeotropic mixtures. Fractional distillation
of ideal and non-ideal mixtures.
Immiscible liquids and steam distillation: numerical calculations involving
vapour pressure may be set.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Osmosis and osmotic pressure: use of osmotic pressure, , for the
determination of relative molecular mass from relation V = nRT where n is
the amount of particles of solute. Questions on the determination of partial
degree of dissociation/association will not be set. Reverse osmosis.
Chemical Equilibrium
Concept of dynamic equilibrium. Characteristics of an equilibrium mixture.
Equilibrium constant in terms of concentrations and of pressures: KC and KP
including units as appropriate. Homogeneous and heterogeneous equilibria
and their associated equilibrium constants. Relation of degree of
dissociation to KC and KP (problems requiring solving quadratic equations
using the formula will not be set).
Experimental methods of investigating chemical equilibrium, e.g. an
esterification reaction.
Le Chatelier’s Principle. The effect of concentration, temperature, and
(where relevant) pressure on: (a) wholly gaseous equilibria, (b) solid-gas
equilibria, (c) equilibria in the liquid phase (e.g. esterification) or in solution.
Effects of presence of catalysts on equilibrium.
Distribution of a non-volatile solute between two immiscible solvents:
partition constant; solvent extraction.
Discussion of association and
dissociation effects on partition equilibrium are not required.
Industrial processes where equilibria are involved: Haber process for
ammonia; Contact process for sulfuric acid including the understanding of
why compromise conditions are employed.
Ionic Equilibria
Acids and bases: Arrhenius, Bronsted-Lowry and Lewis definitions;
conjugate pairs; proticity or ‘basicity’ of acids and ‘acidity’ of bases (e.g.
sulfuric acid as a ‘diprotic’ or ‘dibasic’ acid and carbonate as a ‘diacid’ base);
strong and weak acids and bases; amphoteric compounds; dissociation
constants Ka and Kb and the pK convention. Ionic product of water; pH;
hydrolysis of salts; indicators, typified by phenolphthalein and methyl
orange (students are expected to recall the pH range of application of
phenolphthalein and methyl orange); buffer solutions; pH curves restricted
to monobasic acid – monoacid base reactions). Calculations involving pH,
including those involving buffers, may be set.
Role of solvent in equilibria involving ionisation of molecular solutes.
Degree of ionisation.
Conductivity of solutions of strong and weak
electrolytes (treated qualitatively).
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Heterogeneous ionic equilibria: solubility product and relation to molar
solubility; common ion effect. Numerical calculations on solubility product
will not be set.
Redox Equilibria
Redox reactions: balancing of equations
Disproportionation reaction. Oxidation number.
Electrodes, galvanic cells and standard redox potentials.
hydrogen electrode as a reference electrode. Cell diagrams.
Application of redox potentials to the prediction of redox change.
Electrochemical series. Simple treatment of Nernst Equation and nonstandard electrode potentials (where needed equation will be given). Use of
electrode potentials in deriving solubility product will not be examined.
Corrosion as an electrochemical process: sacrificial protection.
Reaction Kinetics
The experimental investigation of reaction rate for simple reactions
involving use of gas syringe, colorimeter, conductance measurements, etc.
Order and rate coefficients and their measurements, including the initial
rate method; rate equation (fractional and pseudo orders will not be tested).
Graphical presentation of kinetic results. Integrated rate equations are not
required. Half-life for first order reactions.
Effects of pressure, concentration, surface area, temperature and catalysts
on reaction rate. Activation energy of reactions. Maxwell-Boltzmann
distribution of energies and the collision theory of reactions.
Concept of rate-determining step in a multistep reaction and its relevance
to the mechanism of the reaction. Third order reactions and notion of the
improbability of three-particle collisions.
Photochemical reactions and free radical mechanisms.
Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis; examples of the use of catalysts
in industrial processes; catalytic converters; autocatalysis.
Principles of Chemical Periodicity
Periodic classification in terms of electronic structure. Periodic
relationships amongst the elements Li to Ar. Variation in properties as
illustrated by: trends in melting and boiling points, electrical conductivity
and ionisation energy of elements; reaction of elements with oxygen,
chlorine and water; formulae and acid-base character of oxides/hydroxides
of metals and oxides of non-metals (limited to Na2O, MgO, Al2O3, NaOH,
Mg(OH)2, Al(OH)3, SiO2, P4O10, SO2, SO3, Cl2O); formulae of chlorides and
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
reactions with water; formulae of simple hydrides (excluding boron
Descriptive Inorganic Chemistry
11.1 Comparative study of the s-block elements (i) lithium, sodium and
potassium and (ii) beryllium, magnesium, calcium, strontium and barium.
Fixed oxidation states and electronic configuration. Physical properties of
elements; flame tests; reaction with water and with oxygen; diagonal
Oxides, peroxides, hydroxides, carbonates, nitrates(V),
nitrates(III), sulfates(VI) and sulfates(IV): trends in thermal stability of
nitrates(V) and carbonates and solubility of hydroxides and sulfates(VI).
Amphotericity of BeO, covalency of BeCl2.
11.2 Chemistry of carbon, silicon, tin and lead.
Allotropes of carbon, including fullerenes. Variation in ionisation energies
of the elements and structure of the elements and their effect on physical
properties. Main oxidation states and inert pair effect. Hydrolytic behaviour
of chlorides. Principal oxides: preparation (excluding practical details) to
include formation of lower oxides from thermal decomposition of
ethanedioates; acid/base character of oxides. Hydrides. Halides of tin and
lead and chloro complexes. Redox character of the compounds of Sn(II) and
11.3 Chemistry of fluorine, chlorine, bromine and iodine.
Laboratory preparation of chlorine, bromine and iodine. Physical properties:
trends in boiling points, ionisation energies, electron affinities and bond
dissociation enthalpies for the series X2 and HX (X = F, Cl, Br, I). Reactions
between ionic halides X (X = Cl, Br, I) and silver ions, phosphoric(V) and
sulfuric(VI) acids. Acidity of HX and anomalous value for HF. Variable
oxidation states; relative oxidising strength of halogens X 2 (X = Cl, Br, I) and
disproportionation reactions of chlorine and its oxoanions. Iodine in
titrimetry; triiodide ion. Hydrated and anhydrous aluminium chloride and
chlorides of iron to illustrate the difficulty of preparation of hydrolysable
11.4 Transition elements
A general overview of the transition metals emphasising features they have
in common; electronic configurations, metallic character, variable oxidation
states, catalytic roles, coloured compounds and formation of complex ions.
The formation of complex ions explained in terms of the electrostatic
model or else in terms of dative covalency between ligand and central
metal ion; shapes of di-, tetra-, and hexa-coordinated systems; elementary
treatment of isomerism in complex ions (compare §12.5); stability of
complex ions and ligand exchange; nomenclature of complex ions: refer to
publication Chemical Nomenclature for Use in Matriculation Examinations.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
11.5 More detailed chemistry of the following d-block elements: chromium,
manganese, iron and copper.
Chromium: reaction of metal with acids, including passivation with
HNO3, with alkalis to form chromate(III); chromium(II) state and its
strong reducing character, including its formation from Cr(VI) by
reduction with, e.g. Zn/H+; chromium(III) compounds: oxide,
hydroxide and chromates(III), CrCl3 and its hexahydrates as examples
of isomerism involving complex ions: chrome alums; chromium(VI):
(including ammonium chromate(VI)), toxicity of Cr(VI) compounds.
Manganese: reactivity of metal exhibited by its reaction with dilute
acids and water to form Mn2+ and hydrogen; manganese(II); oxide and
hydroxide (instability with respect to oxidation to Mn(III) and Mn(IV);
oxidation of manganese(II) to manganese(VII); manganese(IV) oxide
and its strong oxidising power; conversion of MnO2 to manganate(VI)
and disproportionation of MnO42-; KMnO4; its preparation and
reactions as an oxidising agent.
Iron: reaction of metal with oxidising and non-oxidising acids and
water; reaction with non-metals including C to form steels; rusting of
iron and protection, including sacrificial anodizing with zinc; iron(II)
compounds: oxide, hydroxide, salts, including ammonium iron(II)
sulfate-6-water; iron(III) compounds; oxide, hydroxide, anhydrous
FeCl3, acidity of hexaaquairon(III) chloride; iron(III) alums; reasons for
the non-existence of iron(III) iodide and iron(III) carbonate; important
complex ions of iron: [Fe(CN)6]4-, [Fe(CN)6]3-, [Fe(SCN)(H2O)5]2+ (use in
qualitative analysis), [Fe(NO)(H2O)5]2+ (treated as an Fe(II)-NO complex)
and the brown ring test for nitrate(V).
Copper: reaction with oxidising acids; copper(I) state exemplified by
Cu2O (relation to Fehling’s Test for aldehydes), CuCl and CuI,
instability of Cu+(aq) with respect to disproportionation; copper(II)
compounds: oxide, hydroxide, sulfate(VI), nitrate(V) and basic
carbonates; complexes of copper(I) and copper(II) with ammonia and
chloride ions.
11.6 A more detailed study of selected non-metals.
Hydrogen: manufacture, laboratory preparation and properties as
reducing agent; ionic, covalent and interstitial hydrides; complex
hydrides (typified by LiAlH4); water and its physical properties as
by hydrogen
deuteroderivatives (eg: DCl, ND3, C2D2).
Nitrogen: unreactivity of nitrogen and relation to strength of the
nitrogen-nitrogen triple bond; ammonia and its reactions as base,
ligand and reducing agent; ammonium salts; oxides of nitrogen N2O,
NO, NO2, N2O4, N2O5: preparation, electronic structures and molecular
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
shapes, relation to oxo acids of nitrogen; nitric(III) (nitrous) acid and
nitrates(III) (nitrites) of s-block elements, decomposition of aqueous
ammonium nitrate(III); nitric(V) (nitric) acid: industrial preparation,
reactions as acid, oxidising and nitrating agent; nitrates(V) and their
reactions: thermal decomposition, reduction, ammonium nitrate(V).
allotropy; effects of stratospheric and tropospheric
trioxygen (ozone); laboratory preparation of oxygen from oxides,
peroxides and electrolysis; reaction of oxygen with metals and nonmetals; acidic, basic, amphoteric and neutral oxides; normal and
mixed oxides (typified by Fe3O4 and Pb3O4), hydrogen peroxide and
Sulfur: allotropy; hydrogen sulfide as an acid, a reducing agent and
as a precipitant for insoluble sulfides; toxicity of hydrogen sulfide;
sulfur dioxide and sulfuric(IV) (sulfurous) acid, sulfates(IV) (sulfites):
reducing character; sulfur trioxide and sulfuric(VI) (sulfuric) acid:
reactions of the concentrated acid as an involatile proton donor,
oxidising agent and strong dehydrating agent, dilute sulfuric(VI) acid
and sulfates(VI); thiosulfate: formation from sulfate(IV) and reaction
with acids, iodine and chlorine. Oxides of sulfur as environmental
Fundamental Principles of Organic Chemistry
12.1 Functional groups and homologous series. Molecular, empirical and
structural formulae including graphical representations. Nomenclature of
organic compounds. Systematic names: candidates are referred to the
publication Chemical Nomenclature for Use in Matriculation Examinations.
12.2 Purification of compounds: solvent extraction, recrystallisation; drying,
simple, fractional and steam distillation, sublimation; column, paper and
thin layer chromatography. Preparation of derivatives and their use for
characterisation. The determination of melting points as a test for purity:
mixed melting point technique.
12.3 The determination of empirical, molecular and structural formulae from
analytical information (experimental techniques not required). Structure
deduced from chemistry (sodium fusion test excluded), physical properties
and from information derived from instrumental techniques, namely, mass
spectrometry and infra red spectrophotometry. Interpretation of infra red
spectra for the identification of simple functional groups using tables of
frequencies/wave numbers, details of instrumentation are not required.
12.4 Catenation in carbon compounds. Spatial distribution of the bonds in
simple carbon compounds. Tetrahedral distribution of bonds in alkanes,
planarity of >C=C< in alkenes and of >C=O in carbonyl compounds and
linearity of –CC- in alkynes.
Hybridisation of orbitals and organic
structure: sp3, sp2 and sp orbitals.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
12.5 Structural, geometrical and optical isomerism (restricted to enantiomerism);
racemic mixtures (resolution of which will not be tested). Tautomerism.
The influence of size, shape and polarity on physical properties of organic
12.6 Delocalisation of electrons in organic molecules and canonical formulae;
sigma ( ) and pi ( ) bonds. Delocalisation energy of conjugated systems.
13 Chemistry of Aliphatic and Aromatic Compounds
13.1 Hydrocarbons and petroleum: alkanes, alkenes and aromatic hydrocarbons
from petroleum by cracking and reforming; use of hydrocarbons as fuels.
13.3 Alkanes: chlorination; cycloalkanes typified by cyclohexane, boat and chair
13.4 Alkenes: preparation by elimination reactions (from alcohols and
haloalkanes); addition reactions (with halogen, hydrogen, halogen halides,
sulfuric(VI) acid), Markownikoff’s rule; ozonolysis and use of reaction for
location of double bond, reaction with alkaline manganate(VII);
polymerization reactions: high and low density polymers and Ziegler-Natta
catalysts in the formation of stereoregular poly(propene), biodegradable
13.5 Alkynes: preparation of ethyne from CaC2 and propyne by
dehydrohalogenation reactions; addition reactions including hydration to
produce carbonyl compounds.
13.6 Arenes: benzene and other alkylbenzenes. Substitution reactions: nitration,
sulfonation, alkylation, acylation, halogenation (nuclear versus side chain
for methylbenzene); influence of substituents on further substitution in the
benzene ring: activating and deactivating groups exemplified by -CH3, -OH, NH2, -NO2, -CHO and –COOH; addition reactions of hydrogen and chlorine;
side chain oxidation of alkylbenzenes using alkaline manganate(VII) to
produce aromatic carboxylic acid salts.
13.7 Alcohols, ethers, phenols: primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols and their
differentiation on the basis of oxidation, Lucas test and haloform reaction;
aromatic alcohols typified by phenylmethanol; preparative techniques of
alcohols from halogenoalkanes, alkenes and by reduction of aldehydes,
ketones and carboxylic acids; formation of alcohols by addition of Grignard
reagent to aldehydes and ketones; formation of alkoxides, halogenoalkanes,
esters; alkenes and ethers from alcohols; ethane-1,2-diol and propane-1,2,3triol to typify polyhydric alcohols. Ethers: preparation from alkoxides and
halogenoalkanes and their cleavage with HI. Phenols: preparation from
sulfonic acids and from diazonium salts, acidity of phenols, ether
formation, substitution reactions in the ring including tribromination and
reaction with diazonium ions; reaction with FeCl3 as a colour test for
phenols; polymerization reaction of phenol with methanal.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
13.7 Halogenoalkanes and halogenoarenes: preparation of halogenoalkanes from
alcohols or alkenes; conversion of halogenoalkanes into alcohols, ethers,
amines, nitriles, esters, alkanes, Grignard reagents and alkylarenes;
reactivity of halogenoalkanes related to structure (primary, secondary,
tertiary halogenoalkanes) and nature of halogen (Cl, Br, I); organohalogen
compounds as solvents and biocides and their environmental impact;
halogenoarenes: preparation by direct halogenation (where appropriate) and
via diazonium compounds; unreactivity of halogen atom with respect to
substitution reactions explained in terms of delocalization of electrons;
(chloromethyl)benzene and comparison with nuclear halogenoarenes.
13.8 Aldehydes and ketones: preparation from corresponding alcohols, from
CrCl2O2 -oxidation of methylarenes (for aromatic aldehydes) and by FriedelCrafts reaction (for aromatic ketones); difference in reactivity related to
structure; reactions: reduction by reaction with hydrogen and
hydridometallates; oxidation, a method for distinguishing between
aldehydes and ketones (Fehling, Tollen); addition reactions (ROH, HCN,
NaHSO3), polymerisation of aldehydes; condensation reactions with
hydrazine, phenylhydrazine and 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine and
hydroxylamine, formation of derivatives for characterisation purposes;
condensation polymers from methanal, halogenation and the haloform
reaction; aldol reaction; Cannizzaro reaction.
13.9 Carboxylic acids and derivatives: carboxylic acids: weak protic acidity and
effect on acidity of -substitution with halogen atoms; salt formation and
alkalinity of carboxylates; soaps from long chain (fatty) acids and
comparison with detergents; decarboxylation reaction; reduction (LiAlH4) to
primary alcohols; conversion of carboxylic acids into esters, acid chlorides,
acid anhydrides, acid amides and chloroacids; formation of esters from
phenols; hydrolysis and interconversion reactions of acid derivatives;
Hofmann degradation of amides; formation of nitriles from amides,
halogenoalkanes and diazonium salts (isonitriles not required); conversion
of nitriles to amines and hydrolysis to carboxylic acids.
13.10 Amines and diazonium compounds: primary, secondary and tertiary amines;
quaternary ammonium compounds; basicity of amines, salt formation and
acidity of alkylammonium salts: Hofmann preparation of amines; reduction
of simple and N-substituted amides to form corresponding amines,
hydrolysis of N-substituted amides, aromatic amines by reduction of
nitroarenes; alkylation and acylation reactions of amines; reaction of
primary amines with nitric(III) acid; halogenation of phenylamine;
diazonium salts: formation; substitution reactions to form phenols,
halogenoarenes, arenes and nitriles and coupling reactions with phenols or
arylamines to form azo dyes.
13.11 Difunctional molecules: amino acids: zwitterion formation; relation to
peptides and proteins, synthetic polyamides (eg: Nylon); intramolecular
dehydration of dicarboxylic acids exemplified by butenedioic and benzene1,2-dicarboxylic acids; polyesters from hydroxycarboxylic acids.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
13.12 Mechanistic aspects: reaction mechanisms should be emphasised and used
to rationalise the facts of organic chemistry. It is expected that students be
familiar with the following mechanistic concepts: nucleophile, electrophile,
free radical; inductive and mesomeric effects; bimolecular and unimolecular
nucleophilic substitution reactions of halogenoalkanes, electrophilic
substitution of arenes; mechanism of
nucleophilic addition to C=O group; electrophilic addition to >C=C<
bond; homolytic reactions: the halogenation of alkanes and methylbenzene;
polymerisation of alkenes.
13.13 Students are expected to be familiar with detailed laboratory preparation
and isolation of pure samples of the following organic substances: (a) a
bromoalkane from the corresponding alcohol; (b) nitrobenzene and 1,3dinitrobenzene from benzene; (c) ethanal from ethanol; (d) an ester from
the reaction of a carboxylic acid and an alcohol; (e) phenylamine from
The practical examination will seek to test the ability of candidates to:
manipulate chemicals and simple apparatus in quantitative and
qualitative exercises;
observe and record results of experimental work;
interpret these observations and deduce correct inferences and
conclusions based both on qualitative and quantitative data.
The examination will primarily attempt to test practical skills. Quantitative
exercises including the measurement of mass, volume, temperature and
time may be set. Volumetric analysis involving acids and alkalis, redox
titrations including iodimetry and silver nitrate may also be examined.
Qualitative exercises involving observations of reactions and requiring
deductions on the chemical nature of the substances will also be set. These
will involve both organic and inorganic materials. Inorganic materials set as
unknowns will be chosen from the following types:
Anions: oxide, hydroxide, carbonate, hydrogencarbonate, nitrate(V),
nitrate(III), carboxylate, sulfate(IV), sulfate(VI), thiosulfate, chloride,
bromide, iodide, chromate(VI), dichromate(VI), phosphate, manganate(VII);
Cations: ammonium, potassium, sodium, silver, calcium, magnesium,
strontium, barium, aluminium, lead(II), zinc, chromium(III), manganese(II),
manganese(IV), manganate(VII), iron(II), iron(III), nickel(II), copper(I),
Candidates are instructed to use labcoats and to wear eye protection (safety
goggles) during the practical examination and to avoid wearing clothes or
articles that increase the risk of accident in the laboratory.
AM Syllabus (2011): Chemistry
Recommended Texts
Any of the following are suitable textbooks for the syllabus; the list is not
Lister, T and Renshaw, J, Understanding chemistry for Advanced
Level, 4th Edition, Nelson Thornes Ltd., 1999.
Ramsden, EN, A-Level Chemistry, 4th Edition, Nelson Thornes Ltd.,
Andrew, J and Rispoli, P, Chemistry in Focus, 2nd Edition, Hodder &
Stoughton Ltd., 1999.
Jones, L and Atkins, P, Chemistry: molecules, matter and change, 4th
Edition, W H Freeman, 1999.
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