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Jamb Chemistry Syllabus 2023/2024 General Objective
The aim of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) syllabus in Chemistry is to prepare the candidates for the Board’s examination. It is designed to test their achievement of the course objectives, which are to:
1. Apply the basic principles governing scientific methods in new situations;
2. Interpret scientific data;
3. Deduce the relationships between chemistry and other sciences;
4. Apply the knowledge of chemistry to industry and everyday life.
Jamb Syllabus for Chemistry 2023/2024
|Separation of Mixtures and Purification of Chemical Substance||(a) Pure and impure substances
(b) Boiling and melting points.
(c) Elements, compounds, and mixtures
(d) Chemical and physical changes.
(e) Separation processes: evaporation, simple and fractional distillation, sublimation, filtration, crystallization, paper and columnchromatography, simple and fractional crystallization.
|Chemical Combination||Stoichiometry, laws of definite and multiple
proportions, the law of conservation of matter,
Gay Lussac’s law of combining volumes,
Avogadro’s law; chemical symbols, formulae,
equations and their uses, relative atomic mass
based on 12C=12, the mole concept, and
|Kinetic Theory of Matter & Gas Law||
(a) An outline of the kinetic theory of matter,
melting, vaporization and reverse processes;
melting and boiling explained in terms of
molecular motion and Brownian movement.
(b) The laws of Boyle, Charles, Graham and
Dalton (law of partial pressure); combined gas
law, molar volume and atomicity of gases
|Atomic Structure & Bonding||(a) (i)The concept of atoms, molecules and
ions, the works of Dalton, Millikan, Rutherford,
Mosely, Thompson and Bohr. Simple hydrogen
spectrum, Ionization of gases illustrating the
electron as a fundamental particle of matter.
(ii) Atomic structure, electron configuration,
atomic number, mass number and isotopes;
specific examples should be drawn from
elements of atomic number 1 to 20. Shapes
of s and p orbitals.
(b) The periodic table and periodicity of
elements, presentation of the periodic table
with a view to recognizing families of elements
e.g. alkali metals, halogens, the noble gases,
and transition metals. The variation of the
following properties should be noticed:
ionization energy, ionic radii, electron affinity,
(c) Chemical bonding: Electrovalency and
covalency, the electron configuration of
elements, and their tendency to attain the
noble gas structure. Hydrogen bonding and
metallic bonding as special types of
electrovalency and covalency respectively;
coordinate bond as a type of covalent bond as
illustrated by complexes like [Fe(CN)6]3-, [Fe
(CN)6]4-, [Cu(NH3)4]2+and [Ag(NH3)2]+; van
der Waals’ forces should be mentioned as a
special type of bonding forces.
(d) Shapes of simple molecules: linear ((H2,
02, C12,HCI and CO2), non-linear (H2O) and
(e) Nuclear Chemistry:
(i) Radioactivity (elementary treatment only)
(ii) Nuclear reactions. Simple equations, uses
and applications of natural and artificial
The usual gaseous constituents – nitrogen,
oxygen, water vapor, carbon (IV) oxide and the
noble gases (argon and neon), the proportion
of oxygen in the air e.g. by burning phosphorus or by using alkaline pyrogallol, air as a mixture, and some uses of the noble gas.
|Water||Composition by volume: Water as a solvent, atmospheric gases dissolved in water, and
their biological significance. Water is a product
of the combustion of hydrogen.
Hard and soft water: Temporary and permanent hardness and methods of softening hard water.
Purification of town water supplies. The water
of crystallization, efflorescence, deliquescence,
and hygroscopy. Examples of the substances
exhibiting these properties and their uses.
(a) Unsaturated, saturated and supersaturated solutions. Solubility curves and simple deductions from them, (solubility defined in terms of mole per dm3) and simple calculations.
(b) Solvents for fats, oil, and paints and the
use of such solvents for the removal of stains.
(c) Suspensions and colloids: Harmattan haze
and paints as examples of suspensions and fog,
milk, aerosol spray, and rubber solution as
examples of colloids.
|Acids, Base & Salt||(a) General characteristics and properties of
acids, bases and salts. Acids/base indicators,
basicity of acids, normal, acidic, basic, and
double salts. An acid defined as a substance
whose aqueous solution furnishes H3O+ions or
as a proton donor. Ethanoic, citric and tartaric
acids as examples of naturally occurring
organic acids, alums as examples of double
salts, preparation of salts by neutralization,
precipitation and action of acids on metals.
Oxides and trioxocarbonate (IV) salts
(b) Qualitative comparison of the
conductances of molar solutions of strong and
weak acids and bases, relationship between
conductance, amount of ions present, and their
(c) pH and pOH scale. pH defined as – log[H3O
(d) Acid/base titrations.
(e) Hydrolysis of salts: Simple examples such
as NH4C1, AICI3, Na2CO3, CH3COONa to be
10. Oxidation and Reduction
(a) Oxidation in terms of the addition of
oxygen or removal of hydrogen.
(b) Reduction as removal of oxygen or addition
(c) Oxidation and reduction in terms of
(d) Use of oxidation numbers. Oxidation and
reduction treated as change in oxidation.
number and use of oxidation numbers in
balancing simple equations. IUPAC
nomenclature of inorganic compounds.
(e) Tests for oxidizing and reducing agents.
|Electrolysis||(a) Electrolytes and non-electrolytes. Faraday’s
laws of electrolysis.
(b) Electrolysis of dilute H2SO4, aqueous
CuSO4, CuC12 solution, dilute and
concentrated NaC1 solutions and fused NaC1
and factors affecting discharge of ions at the
(c) Uses of electrolysis: Purification of metals
e.g. copper and production of elements and
compounds e.g. A1, Na, O2, Cl2 and NaOH.
(d) Electrochemical cells: Redox series (K, Na,
Ca, Mg, AI, Zn, Fe, PbII, H, Cu, Hg, Au,)
half-cell reactions and electrode potentials.
Simple calculations only.
(e) Corrosion as an electrolytic process,
cathodic protection of metals, painting,
electroplating and coating with grease or oil as
ways of preventing iron from corrosion.
|Energy Charge||(a) Energy changes(∆H) accompanying
physical and chemical changes: dissolution of
substances in or reaction with water e.g. Na,
NaOH,K, NH4, Cl. Endothermic (+∆H) and
exothermic (-∆H) reactions.
(b) Entropy as an order-disorder phenomenon:
simple illustrations like mixing of gases and
dissolution of salts.
(c) Spontaneity of reactions: ∆G0 = 0 as a
criterion for equilibrium, ∆G greater or less
than zero as a criterion for non-spontaneity or
|Rates of Chemical Reaction||(a) Elementary treatment of the following
factors which can change the rate of a
(i) Temperature e.g. the reaction between HCI
and Na2S2O3 or Mg and HCI
(ii) Concentration e.g. the reaction between
HCl and Na2S2O3, HCl and marble and the
iodine clock reactio1n, for gaseous systems,
pressure may be used as concentration term.
(iii) Surface area e.g. the reaction between
marble and HCI with marble in
(i) powdered form
(ii) lumps of the same mass.
(iv) Catalyst e.g. the decomposition of H2O2 or
KCIO3 in the presence or absence of MnO2
(b) Concentration/time curves.
(c) Activation energy Qualitative treatment of
Arrhenius’ law and the collision theory, effect
of light on some reactions. e.g. halogenation of
|Chemical Equilibrium||Reversible reactions and factors governing the
equilibrium position. Dynamic equilibrium. Le
Chatelier’s principle and equilibrium constant.
Simple examples to include the action of steam
on iron and N2O4
2NO2. No calculation will be required.
|Non-metals and their compounds||(a) Hydrogen: commercial production from
water gas and cracking of petroleum fractions,
laboratory preparation, properties uses, and
test for hydrogen.
(b) Halogens: Chlorine as a representative
element of the halogen. Laboratory
preparation, industrial preparation by
electrolysis, properties, and uses, e.g. water
sterilization, bleaching, manufacture of HCl,
plastics and insecticides. Hydrogen chloride
and Hydrochloric acid: Preparation and
properties. Chlorides and test for chlorides.
(c) Oxygen and Sulphur
(i) Oxygen: Laboratory preparation, properties
and uses. Commercial production from liquid
air. Oxides: Acidic,basic, amphoteric and
neutral, trioxygen (ozone) as an allotrope and
the importance of ozone in the atmosphere.
(ii) Sulphur: Uses and allotropes: preparation
of allotropes is not expected. Preparation,
properties, and uses of sulphur (IV) oxide, the
reaction of SO2 with alkalis.Trioxosulphate (IV)
acid and its salts, the effect of acids on salts of
trioxosulphate (IV), Tetraoxosulphate (VI) acid:
Commercial preparation (contact process only),
properties as a dilute acid, an oxidizing and a
dehydrating agents and uses. Test for SO42-.
Hydrogen sulphide: Preparation and properties
as a weak acid, reducing and precipitating
agents. Test for S2-
(i) Laboratory preparation
(ii) Production from liquid air
(iii) Ammonia: Laboratory and industrial
preparations (Haber Process only), properties
and uses, ammonium salts
and their uses, oxidation of ammonia to
nitrogen (IV) oxide and trioxonitrate (V) acid.
Test for NH4+
(iv) Trioxonitrate (V) acid: Laboratory
preparation from ammonia; properties and
uses. Trioxonitrate (V) salt-action of heat and
uses. Test for NO3-
(v) Oxides of nitrogen: Properties. The nitrogen
(i) Allotropes: Uses and properties
(ii) Carbon(IV) oxide, Laboratory preparation,
properties and uses. Action of heat on
trioxocarbonate(IV) salts and test for CO32-
(iii) Carbon(II) oxide: Laboratory preparation,
properties including its effect on blood; sources
of carbon (II) oxide to include charcoal, fire
and exhaust fumes.
(iv) Coal: Different types, products obtained
from destructive distillation of wood and coal.
(v) Coke: Gasification and uses. Manufacture of
synthesis gas and uses.
|Metals and their compounds||(a) General properties of metals
(b) Alkali metals e.g. sodium
(i) Sodium hydroxide:- Production by
electrolysis of brine, its action on aluminium,
zinc and lead
ions. Uses including precipitation of metallic
(ii) Sodium trioxocarbonate (IV) and sodium
hydrogen trioxocarbonate (IV): Production by
Solvay process, properties and uses, e.g.
Na2CO3 in the manufacture of glass.
(iii) Sodium chloride: its occurrence in sea
water and uses, the economic importance of
seawater and the recovery of sodium chloride.
(c) Alkaline-earth metals, e.g. calcium;
calcium oxide, calcium hydroxide and calcium
Properties and uses. Preparation of Calcium
oxide from seashells, the chemical composition
of cement and the setting of mortar. Test for
(d) Aluminium Purification of bauxite,
electrolytic extraction, properties, and uses of
aluminium and its compounds. Test for A13+
(e) Tin Extraction from its ores. Properties and
(f) Metals of the first transition series.
(i) electron configuration
(ii) oxidation states
(iii) complex ion formation
(iv) formation of coloured ions
(g) Iron Extraction from sulphide and oxide
ores, properties and uses, different forms of
iron and their properties and advantages of
steel over iron. Test for Fe2+ and Fe3+
(h) Copper Extraction from sulphide and oxide
ores, properties and uses of copper.
Preparation and uses of copper (II)
Tetraoxosulphate (VI). Test for Cu2+
(i) Alloy Steel, stainless steel, brass, bronze,
type-metal, duralumin, soft solder, permallory
and alnico (constituents and uses only).
|Organic Compounds||An introduction to the tetravalency of carbon,
the general formula, IUPAC nomenclature and
the determination of
the empirical formula of each class of the
organic compounds mentioned below.
(a) Aliphatic hydrocarbons
(i) Alkanes Homologous series in relation to
physical properties, substitution reaction and a
few examples and uses of halogenated
products. Isomerism: structural only (examples
on isomerism should not go beyond six carbon
atoms). Petroleum: composition, fractional
distillation and major products; cracking and
reforming, Petrochemicals – starting materials
of organic syntheses, quality of petrol and
meaning of octane number
(ii) Alkenes Isomerism: structural and
geometric isomerism, additional and
polymerization reactions, polythene
and synthetic rubber as examples of products
of polymerization and its use in vulcanization.
(iii) Alkynes Ethyne – production from action of
water on carbides, simple reactions and
properties of ethyne.
(b) Aromatic hydrocarbons e.g. benzene –
structure, properties and uses.
(c) Alkanols Primary, secondary, tertiary –
production of ethanol by fermentation and
from petroleum by-products. Local examples of
fermentation and distillation, e.g. gin from
palm wine and other local sources and glycerol
as a polyhydric alkanol. Reactions of OH group
– oxidation as a distinguishing test among
primary, secondary and tertiary alkanols
(d) Alkanals and alkanones. Chemical test to
distinguish between alkanals and alkanones.
(e) Alkanoic acids. Chemical reactions;
neutralization and esterification, ethanedioic
(oxalic) acid as an example of a dicarboxylic
acid and benzene carboxylic acid as an
example of an aromatic acid.
(f) Alkanoates Formation from alkanoic acids
and alkanols – fats and oils as alkanoates.
Saponification: Production of soap and
margarine from alkanoates and distinction
between detergents and soaps.
(g) Amines (Alkanamines) Primary, Secondary,
(h) Carbohydrates Classification – mono-, di-
and polysaccharides; composition, chemical
tests for simple sugars and reaction with
concentrated tetraoxosulphate (VI) acid.
Hydrolysis of complex sugars e.g. cellulose
from cotton and starch from cassava, the uses
of sugar and starch in the production of
alcoholic beverages, pharmaceuticals and
(i) Proteins: Primary structures, hydrolysis and
tests (Ninhydrin, Biuret, Millon’s and
xanthoproteic) Enzymes and their functions.
(j) Polymers: Natural and synthetic rubber;
addition and condensation polymerization.
Methods of preparation, examples, and uses.
Thermoplastic and thermosetting plastics.
|Chemistry and Industry||Chemical industries: Types, raw materials, and
Jamb Chemistry Syllabus Recommended Textbook
Ababio, O.Y. (2005). New School
Chemistry for Senior Secondary
Schools, (Third Edition),
Onitsha: Africana FIRST Publishers
Bajah, S.T. Teibo, B.O., Onwu, G and
Obikwere, A. (1999). Senior Secondary
Book 1, Lagos: Longman
Bajah, S.T., Teibo, B.O., Onwu, G and
Obikwere, A. (2000). Senior Secondary
Books 2 and 3, Lagos: Longman
Ohia, G.N.C., Adewoyin, F.A. and
Akpan, B.B. (1997). Exam Focus
Chemistry for WASSCE
& JME: Ibadan: University Press Plc
STAN (1987). Chemistry for Senior
Secondary Schools, Ibadan:
Sylvester: O.O. (2004). A
Comprehensive Practical Chemistry
for Senior Secondary Schools,
Uche, I.O., Adenuga, I.J. and
Iwuagwu, S.L. (2003). Countdown to
WASSCE/SSCE, NECO, JME Chemistry,