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Your AP Chemistry Resource Center

Overview of AP Chemistry

AP Chemistry is a college-level course offered by the College Board to high school students who are interested in studying chemistry at an advanced level. It was opted by 141,000 students in 2023 as it is one of the preferred AP courses. According to the class alumnae survey, it has a difficulty rating of 7.3 out of 10. The pass rate of the 2023 AP Chemistry Exam was 75% and 15% of students scored a 5. AP Chemistry is known for its challenging curriculum and rigorous exams. It deals with topics such as stoichiometry, chemical equilibrium, and thermodynamics.

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Course content

Unit 1: Atomic Structure and Properties

You’ll learn about the composition of atoms and ways scientists measure and categorize these molecular building blocks.

  • Moles and molar mass
  • Mass spectroscopy of elements
  • Elemental composition of pure substances
  • Composition of mixtures
  • Atomic structure and electron configuration
  • Photoelectron spectroscopy
  • Periodic trends
  • Valence electrons and ionic compounds

  • Types of chemical bonds
  • Intramolecular force and potential energy
  • Structure of ionic solids
  • Structure of metals and alloys
  • Lewis diagrams
  • Resonance and formal charge
  • VSEPR and bond hybridization

  • Intermolecular forces
  • Solids, liquids, and gases
  • Kinetic molecular theory
  • Solutions and mixtures
  • Photoelectric effect

  • Introduction for reactions
  • Net ionic equations
  • Representations of reactions
  • Physical and chemical changes
  • Stoichiometry
  • Types of chemical reactions

  • Reaction rate
  • Introduction to rate law
  • Elementary reactions
  • Collision model
  • Introduction to reaction mechanisms
  • Multistep reaction energy profile
  • Catalysis

  • Endothermic and exothermic processes
  • Heat transfer and thermal equilibrium
  • Heat capacity and calorimetry
  • Energy of phase changes
  • Introduction to enthalpy of reaction
  • Enthalpy of formation
  • Hess’s law

  • Introduction to equilibrium
  • Calculating the equilibrium constant
  • Calculating equilibrium concentrations
  • Introduction to Le Châtelier’s principle
  • Introduction to solubility equilibria
  • pH and solubility
  • Free energy of dissolution

  • Introduction to acids and bases
  • pH and pOH of strong acids and bases
  • Acid-base reactions and buffers
  • Molecular structure of acids and bases
  • pH and pKa
  • Properties of buffers

  • Introduction to entropy
  • Gibbs free energy and thermodynamic favorability
  • Thermodynamic and kinetic control
  • Free energy and equilibrium
  • Galvanic (voltaic) and electrolyte cells
  • Electrolysis and Faraday’s law

Exam Date

AP Chemistry Exam

Will be conducted on

Mon, May 6, 2024 | 12 PM Local

AP Chemistry Exam Guide

AP Chemistry is known for its challenging curriculum and rigorous exam. In the AP Chemistry exam guide, we provide you with information on the exam structure, scoring, and some tips to score good marks in the exam.

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AP Chemistry Course Resources

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AP Chemistry Course

The College Board website offers a variety of extra resources to help AP Chemistry students succeed on the exam. These resources include the AP Chemistry Course at a Glance, the AP Chemistry Course and Exam Description, and more. To help students prepare for the AP Chemistry exam, we have provided links to these extra resources below.

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AP Chemistry Course at a Glance

Excerpted from the AP Chemistry Course and Exam Description, the Course at a Glance document outlines the topics and skills covered in the AP Chemistry course, along with suggestions for sequencing.



AP Chemistry Course and Exam Description

This is the core document for this course. Unit guides clearly lay out the course content and skills and recommend sequencing and pacing for them throughout the year. The CED was updated in the summer of 2022 to reflect a change in the calculator policy.


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