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Why is it important to study high school chemistry? (SCH4U)

High school chemistry studies provide a solid foundation for all students, creating a solid background that blends the sciences and mathematics. Continuing studies in chemistry can lead to careers in chemistry or related careers like pharmaceuticals. Chemistry also provides a valuable skill set in communications, analysis, research, and organization that is important for any career or educational path a student chooses.

What Is Online High School Chemistry Class Coursework?

Online high school chemistry coursework provides a comprehensive overview of the key aspects of chemistry. Chemistry touches almost every part of our lives, from basic needs like food and housing to emerging technologies that tackle environmental issues and health concerns. Chemistry plays a role in keeping our environment clean. It also includes the production of needs like food, clothing, housing, healthcare, and energy. Chemists enhance our lives by solving problems and improving the ways we live, from energy-efficient cars to treating illnesses.

Chemistry is well-known as the central science because it combines physics with mathematics, biology with medicine, and earth sciences with environmental sciences. Knowledge of chemistry concepts like the nature of chemicals and chemical processes helps with studying other sciences. High school chemistry helps to create a solid foundation of scientific understanding of our physical and biological environment.

What Do You Learn in an Online High School Chemistry Class?

High school chemistry studies prepare students for university studies by adding depth to their knowledge of organic chemistry, the properties of matter, energy changes and rates of reaction, chemical systems, and electrochemistry. Chemistry courses illustrate the role chemistry plays in almost all aspects of our daily lives and how chemistry is used to protect and monitor the environment. High school chemistry study will improve students' problem-solving, research, and critical thinking skills.

Several key topics are covered in online high school chemistry courses, including:

  • Basics of organic chemistry, including studying the properties and reactions of organic compounds.
  • Molecular structure and how it affects the behavior and properties of the matter around us.
  • Energy production, including the chemical reactions that create all types of energy that power our bodies and produce electricity.
  • Concepts include equilibrium or incomplete chemical reactions that are common and leave products and reactants behind.

What Can You Do if You Study Chemistry?

Studying chemistry and the knowledge and skills earned along the way can help your marketability as you begin to look for a job. Students hone their skills in many areas, including mathematics, analysis, problem-solving, research, maintaining data, and technology. Those skills are valuable for chemist jobs, related work, and even jobs and studies that aren't related.

Chemist jobs

Jobs in chemistry are diverse and shielded from recessions, with chemist jobs plentiful even when unemployment levels are high. Positions directly related to a chemistry degree include chemical engineer, biotechnologist, pharmacologist, research scientist, clinical scientist, laboratory technician, researcher, and forensic scientist.

Chemists have a deep understanding of how atoms, molecules, and ions shape and affect all parts of our daily lives and how to use this knowledge to fix problems and improve our lives. Things like measuring the safety of drinking water, creating or improving antibiotics, and building synthetic materials are numerous ways chemists can affect us.

Chemists in the lab may work on food flavorings or preservatives, construction materials, pharmaceuticals, bloodwork analysis, or numerous other scenarios. Beyond the laboratory, chemists work all over the earth on land and water; they also study the atmosphere and internal workings of the planet.

In addition to working hands-on in a lab or on a job site, chemists may take their knowledge and apply it toward educating others, selling or marketing materials products that require specialized knowledge, or guiding public policy.

Examples of chemist jobs and their descriptions:

  • Analytical chemists analyze substances, determining the components and how they may react with each other.
  • Chemical engineers create new materials from raw products, designing and developing plastics and medical components.
  • Geochemists focus on rocks and minerals, analyzing the makeup of materials and working on sites like oil drilling locations and hazardous waste abatement.
  • Toxicologists study the effects of drugs and other substances on biological systems, finding ways to measure the impact.

Related jobs

A chemistry degree opens the door to many career options that aren't directly tied to the degree. The study of chemistry develops a skill set that helps prepare students for other areas, including pre-medicine and other healthcare jobs like pharmacy and veterinary care. A strong chemistry background or degree can provide a significant advantage in pursuing related careers or education. Jobs that rely on the skill set developed with a chemistry degree include environmental consultant, science writer, teacher, and management consultant.

Examples of related jobs and their descriptions:

  • Environmental consultants provide insight into the regulatory, data, and technical aspects of the construction, infrastructure, and health regulations.
  • Science writers create content like articles, papers, press releases, and website content that communicates trends and news in science.
  • Teachers at K-12 schools and higher education help train new scientists.
  • Management consultants help implement scientific projects and research initiatives, enabling projects to move forward using their science knowledge.

Chemistry Skills in Demand

Many different types of employers seek chemistry graduates. Industries include agricultural chemicals, metal extraction and refining, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, plastics, and toiletries. Employers seeking skills from chemistry studies include food and drink manufacturers, utilities, health care, government agencies, research organisations, higher education, and environmental consultancies.

Skills from chemistry study are diverse:

  • Analysis and research.
  • Adaptability to new technologies and discoveries.
  • Organization and attention to detail.
  • A broad base of scientific and mathematics knowledge.
  • Written and oral communications.

The study of chemistry improves students' skills in many areas beyond the sciences. Chemistry relies on mathematical skills and the ability to think critically, organize research, and explore the big picture impacts that can affect everyone in society. Whether a student is planning on a career in chemistry and the sciences or may take a completely different path, they won't regret learning more about chemistry and acquiring the life skills developed along the way.

Blyth Academy offers Chemistry for students in grade 12, both in-person and online. You can schedule an informational session to learn more about Blyth's 11 locations across Ontario and the self-paced Blyth Academy Online options. With engaging teachers and small class sizes, Blyth Academy focuses on individualized learning experiences for students in grades four through 12.

As an Ontario Ministry of Education inspected high school, Blyth Academy Online offers over 160 Ontario high school course credits for students looking to advance their learning and stay ahead of the curve.

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