Wendy Pitt reviews these coursebooks for the AQA A-level course

Book covers

AS-level chemistry: the complete course for AQA (student book)
Richard Parsons
Broughton in Furness, UK: CGP 2012 | £19.99 (PB) | ISBN9781847627919

A2-level chemistry: the complete course for AQA (student book)
Richard Parsons
Broughton in Furness, UK: CGP
2012 | 290pp | £19.99 (PB)
ISBN 9781847627926

Reviewed by Wendy Pitt

These coursebooks are designed to cover all aspects of the AQA A-level course and so have a significantly greater content than the CGP revision guides that will be familiar to many students and teachers. They are not traditional textbooks; they have a very informal style with detailed and clear notes on 'what you need to know' with tips in the margins for the student. They are clearly set out with simple illustrations and attractive accompanying photographs.

Each book is specifically matched to the AQA course, with learning objectives linked to the specification and each section summarised by bullet points.

What is particularly helpful to the student is the many practice questions within each section (both knowledge application and fact recall) with detailed answers at the back of the book. There are also exam-style questions. These are not actual AQA past examination questions but they are of a very similar type, again with detailed answers.

There are sections on assessment advice - investigative and practical skills as well as exam structure and technique - and the glossary could be a useful reminder of key terms and ideas.

While the retail price is comparable to that of many similar chemistry books, the school price of £10 is very competitive indeed. Anyone having any doubts about these or any other CGP publications can request a free sample with no strings attached and I would recommend that all chemistry departments take advantage of this. On closer inspection, these publications may prove to be a good choice for your students.

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