NCEA L2 Chemistry - Mātai Matū A

Course Description

Teacher in Charge: Mrs S. Withers

Recommended Prior Learning

14 credits in Science at Level 1, or higher. However, if you are really keen and are willing to work hard, we will consider you. 


Chemistry is a fascinating subject because of its history, the beauty of its logic and its multitude of applications. At MBC chemistry is a subject for everyone. 

Chemistry is the study of the composition of matter and the changes in composition that this matter undergoes. We do experiments to describe what matter looks like and does and then we learn how to use chemical principles to explain and discuss why matter behaves in this way. 

This course is for students who wish to develop their thinking skills, their ability to engage in logical argument, laboratory skills and their understanding of the microstructure and behaviour of matter and chemical systems as they learn about the chemicals and chemical reactions that cause rusting, grapes to ripen, wine to form from grapes and both positive and negative implications for the winemaker and consumer. 


Topics you will learn about include:

Redox reactions 

Qualitative analysis of wine chemicals

Organic chemistry

By the end of the course you will know about the principles of

Oxidation, reduction, addition, substitution, elimination and acid base reactions 

IUPAC nomenclature of a variety of organic molecules 

Using qualitative analysis to identify a range of organic molecules 

You will gain an understanding of the implications of chemical reactions in the wine industry and in our daily lives.

Course Overview

Semester A
At the start of the Chemistry in our valley course you will carry out experiments that involve electrons moving from one chemical to another. These are called Redox Reactions. Rusting is an example of a Redox reaction. You will use these reactions to practice crafting concise, scientifically worded explanations and justifications.
While collecting and stamping grapes and making wine you will build knowledge about the chemicals that are associated with grape ripening and wine making.
You will then apply you knowledge of Redox and Acid Base reactions to engage in Qualitative analysis to find the chemicals present in wine and develop an understanding of the implications of these chemicals for the wine maker and the consumer.
Then new language will be introduced to you - IUPAC nomenclature. As you practise using this language to name organic molecules you will become familiar with alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, haloalkanes, amines, alcohols, carboxylic acids and their associated physical and chemical properties.
Lastly, you will have the opportunity to apply your qualitative analysis skills to distinguish between a range of organic molecules and draw on the skills you mastered at the start of the course to craft concise, scientifically worded explanations to justify your answers.
If you choose to complete another internal in place of the external you will make soap, mayonnaise, vinaigrette, butter and moisturisers and develop an understanding about how the chemicals involved cause these substances to have their unique properties.

Learning Areas:

NCEA Level 2, Science - Pūtaiao


NCEA L2 Chemistry - Mātai Matū B, NCEA L3 Chemistry A - Mātai Matū A

You want to keep your career options open or if you are considering a career in any science or in law, writing , politics, farming or a trade
AND BECAUSE ........
Chemistry develops habits of thinking logically and clearly that can be applied to almost any sort of work
A knowledge of chemistry is useful, no matter what career you follow
Chemistry is part of all natural sciences and a person cannot go very far in any science without a knowledge of chemistry
Chemistry is an essential prerequisite for many university and technical courses.

Career Pathways

Mining Engineer, Acupuncturist, Registered Nurse, Agricultural/Horticultural Scientist, Agricultural/Horticultural Consultant, Paramedic, Anaesthetist, Anaesthetic Technician, Pathologist, Veterinary Nurse, Zoologist, Chemist, Marine Biologist, Medical Physicist, Microbiologist, Chemical Engineer, Biochemist, Biomedical Engineer, Biotechnologist, Metal Worker, Phlebotomist, Brewer, Mechanical Engineer, Dairy Processing Operator, Clinical Physiologist, Physician, Surgeon, Midwife, Dental Assistant, Chemical Production Operator, Science Technician, Podiatrist, Chiropractor, Civil Engineer, Meteorologist, Medical Laboratory Scientist, Clinical Coder, Dental Technician, Community Karitāne, Pharmacist, Conservator, Crop Farmer/Manager, Oral Health Therapist, Dentist, Medical Imaging Technologist, Diagnostic Radiologist, Dietitian, Forensic Scientist, General Practitioner, Gynaecologist/Obstetrician, Psychiatrist, Geologist, Environmental Scientist, Energy and Chemical Plant Operator, Energy/Carbon Auditor, Environmental Engineer, Environmental/Public Health Officer, Plastics Worker, Food Technologist, Forest Manager, Forestry Scientist, Pest Control Technician, Geophysicist, Health and Safety Adviser, Health Promoter, Naturopath, Veterinarian, Ship's Master, Medical Laboratory Technician, Occupational Therapist, Winemaker, Optometrist, Osteopath, Pulp and Paper Mill Operator, Physiotherapist, Plastics Technician, Production Manager, Radiation Oncologist, Speech-Language Therapist, Water/Wastewater Treatment Operator, Orchard Farmer/Manager, Ophthalmologist, Viticulturist, Epidemiologist

Contributions and Equipment/Stationery

All curriculum costs will be covered by the school.

Assessment Information This course has three documented assessments - two 3 credit practical internal credits on Redox reactions and Qualitative analysis and one 4 credit external on Organic chemistry. This course does however provide opportunities for students to design a personal unique course according to their abilities and aspirations. For example there is an option to take a year long 5 credit Level 3 Organic Chemistry course (AS 91391) on Monday afternoons from 3:15 to 4:15 and an option to swop the external Level 2 Organic Chemistry (AS 91165) for an internal 2 credit Organic Chemistry Unit Standard (US 6347). These options can be negotiated with your teacher during the course.
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