Biology

“The study of living organisms”

The Biology department aims to promote an interest and curiosity about the diversity and origins of the living world.

Biology teachers

  • Mr M. Scott – Head of Department

  • Dr C. Holland

  • Mr A. Aitken

  • Mrs G. Todd

  • Mr P. Clarke – technician.

Biology is an ideal choice for students with an interest and curiosity about the diversity and origins of the living world around them. It focuses on our interactions with the natural environment. The A-level Biology course aims to develop an in depth knowledge and understanding of the ways in which biological organisms function.

Biology at AS and A2 level builds upon the knowledge, understanding and skills developed during GCSE. A ‘B’ grade in Triple Award or a A/B in Double Award Science is required. Single Award Science or Applied Science is not a suitable basis for the study of Biology at Advanced level. It is also advisable that students have a pass grade in GCSE Mathematics.

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KS3 curriculum

Autumn Term Green plants and their environment – the study of photosynthesis
Winter Term Food and digestion – (including an investigation into the effect of temperature on the rate of digestion of milk protein by protease enzyme)
Summer Term Cells, The Nucleus and Genes

KS4 Curriculum

GCSE Biology is taught as a component of the Double Award specification and also as a separate science for those who want more in-depth understanding. GCSE classes are taught in mixed ability sets of approximately 20 pupils. An emphasis is placed on practical work which provides students with analytical, problem solving and project design skills. Such transferable skills can then be developed further in both higher education and the workplace.

Specification followed: CCEA               www.ccea.org.uk

What will I study?

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KS5 Curriculum

Specification followed: CCEA                               www.ccea.org.uk

Biology is a very popular A-level choice with approximately 60 students in Year 13 each year. Many of the students go on to read medical related subjects at university. Other students study Biology in order to keep their options open when applying for university courses as it is recognised as a strong academic subject across the board.

What will I Study?

AS 1 Molecules and Cells
AS 2 Organisms and Biodiversity
AS 3 Assessment of Practical Skills (Internal practical assessment – coursework)
A2 1 Physiology and Ecosystems
A2 2 Biochemistry, Genetics and Evolutionary Trends
A2 3 Assessment of Investigative and Practical Skills (coursework)

How will I be assessed?

Unit Assessment Format Duration Weightings Availability
AS 1 Written examination, externally assessed 1 hour 30 minutes 40% of AS
20% of A Level
Summer 2016
AS 2 Written examination, externally assessed 1 hour 30 minutes 40% of AS
20% of A Level
Summer 2016
AS 3 Internal practical assessment N/A 20% of AS
10% of A Level
Summer 2016
A2 1 Written examination, externally assessed 2 Hours 40% of A2
20% of A Level
Summer 2016
A2 2 Written examination, externally assessed 2 Hours 40% of A2
20% of A Level
Summer 2016
A2 3 Internal practical assessment N/A 40% of A2
20% of A Level
Summer 2016

Extra-curricular

AS Biology students go to Carlingford Lough every year to carry out a field study using sampling techniques outlined in the A-level specification.

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