Centre for Continuing Education

HSC Chemistry Preparation Course (Part 2) (April)

HSC Chemistry. The smart way to prepare for your HSC.

Prepare for HSC Chemistry the smart way with HSC Chemistry preparation courses at CCE, the University of Sydney.

This course provides consolidation of the key content and skills from The Acidic Environment module. There is a focus on those cognitive skills needed to access and apply chemical knowledge in an HSC assessment context and the higher order thinking needed to push student achievement into Band 6. The workshops are activity based whereby students explore and apply chemical knowledge and skills using a combination of lectures, tutorials and problem-solving sessions with immediate feedback from teachers. In short, this course is designed to review key concepts and skills with a view to maximising results in a variety of chemistry assessment tasks.

This course is part of a 3-part series covering key areas from within this subject’s syllabus. Other courses include HSC Chemistry Preparation Course (Part 1) and HSC Chemistry Preparation Course (Part 3). Students do not need to attend all three parts in order to benefit. The series is supplemented by HSC Chemistry Exam Preparation Course to prepare for end of year exams.


Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

  • Answer a range of questions covering the content, concepts and skills in the module.
  • Critically evaluate their own and others' answers to improve the quality of responses to assessment tasks.
  • Identify the relationships between key concepts in the module.
  • Apply strategies for problem solving to improve the quality and accuracy of responses to assessment tasks.
  • Critically analyse experimental methods and comment meaningfully on validity, reliability and accuracy.
  • Analyse, process and apply quantitative chemical data to solve problems.


(Aligned to NESA Syllabus Reference Points)

All three subtopics within the 9.3 Acidic Environment Module will be covered:

  • 9.3.1 Indicators were identified with the observation that the colour of some flowers depends on soil composition.
  • 9.3.2 While we usually think of the air around us as neutral, the atmosphere naturally contains acidic oxides of carbon, nitrogen and sulfur. The concentrations of these acidic oxides have been increasing since the Industrial Revolution.
  • 9.3.3 Acids occur in many foods, drinks and even within our stomachs.
  • 9.3.4 Because of the prevalence and importance of acids, they have been used and studied for hundreds of years. Over time, the definitions of acid and base have been refined.
  • 9.3.5 Esterification is a naturally occurring process which can be performed in the laboratory.

Relevant Skills from the 9.1 Module will also be covered.

Intended Audience

Only current Year 12 students should attend this course in 2018. Changes to the Year 12 syllabus will be introduced in 2019. This course content is therefore not suitable for current Years 10 – 11 students.

Years 10-11 students should enrol in Year 11 Chemistry Preparation Course (New Syllabus).

Delivery Style

This HSC Chemistry course is delivered as activity-based workshops where students explore and apply chemistry knowledge and skills in a combination of lectures, tutorials and problem-solving sessions while receiving immediate feedback.


  • A Course Booklet covering all syllabus dot points for this module, including example practical methods and results.
  • Answers to all questions in the Course Booklet.
  • HSC Questions from recent years on the relevant module.
  • HSC Sample Answers from recent years on the relevant module.

Course Evaluation

This course will be evaluated via an online student questionnaire delivered in class.

Getting Through Your HSC: A Practical Guide

While you progress through this journey and also the conclusion of your schooling life, we know you’ll have a lot on your mind – exams, future study, careers – but remember, while keeping focused on these bigger goals and aspirations, it’s also important not to forget your own health and well-being.

For tips on staying motivated and keeping focused, dealing with anxiety, keeping healthy, relaxation, pre-study exercise and more, read our article Getting Through Your HSC: A Practical Guide.


  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Small class sizes
  • Free, expert advice
  • Student materials – yours to keep
  • Statement of completion

What others say.

  • I found it useful and refreshing how the tutor put the syllabus and the content into perspective, emphasising to us that there’s no need to be overwhelmed as the essentials are very refined and achievable. The overview was in depth but sufficiently swift for the time constraints, and the process was made enjoyable by the tutor’s enthusiasm, obvious proficiency in the field and humour. The course helped me to get a better grip on basics and consequently improve my overall understanding of the module, providing a comfortable environment that facilitated progress. I’ve also found the resources provided to be of great use.