Chemistry looks at the composition and properties of matter. It seeks to describe and explain how substances undergo chemical reactions and change from one substance to another. Chemistry holds a central position between physics and biology and has a very wide range of real life applications. Topics range from the highly conceptual, like the structure of the atom, through to the very pragmatic, like the study of protein structure or the manufacture of steel.

Chemistry is respected as a rigourous academic subject. Successful chemistry students are good at understanding conceptual models and learning large bodies of fact. They can apply many ideas at once and construct logical arguments often backed up with mathematical precision. These skills will always be in demand and chemists are recruited far beyond the obvious careers of research and industry.