Option 10: Historical Topics

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The purposes of this Revised Nuffield Chemistry option were to review the historical development of a field of chemistry with special reference to its applied and social aspects; to study the life and work of one or more famous scientists working in the field; to create an interest in the original writings of scientists; and to carry on laboratory reconstructions of key historical experiments or practical techniques. Under O-level regulations this was a teacher-assessed option which allowed considerable freedom of interpretation.

Two schemes were outlined, with practical details, in the student booklet.


Scheme A: Humphry Davy, Michael Faraday and the history of electrochemistry

A1: The lives of Davy and Faraday

A2: Davy’s researches in electrochemistry

A3: Faraday’s researches in electrochemistry

A4: Later developments in electrochemistry

A5: Study topics

Scheme B: The history of dyeing

B1: An outline history of dyes

B2: Natural dyes

B3: The discovery of mauveine

B4: Modern synthetic dyes

B5: Study topics

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