A Level | Biology
A Level in Biology
Exam Board: OCR (Biology A)
Will this course suit me?
You will need an interest in the biology of animals, plants and microbes and be able to adopt a scientific approach. You will also require good organisational and time management skills as there is a lot of content to cover in the course.
This is a very interesting specification. Some parts build upon work covered at GCSE, other concepts are completely new. Each topic covers a different key concept of Biology and then considers its applications. The teaching of practical skills is an important part of the course and will be covered as a series of non-examinable practicals over the two year course.
The full A Level comprises the following modules:
Module 1: Development and practical skills in Biology
Module 2: Foundations in Biology
Module 3: Exchange and transport
Module 4: Biodiversity, evolution and disease
Module 5: Communication, homeostasis and energy
Module 6: Genetics, evolution and ecosystems
Benefits of the Course
Biology combines well with other science subjects, Maths, Geography and Psychology as well as being an accessible science subject for students whose other AS choices are more arts or language based. The course teaches a range of practical skills and applies concepts to work-place examples in food science, ecology, farming and biotechnology.
Outside the classroom
There will be a residential field trip at the end of the Lower Sixth year to Orielton Field Centre, Pembrokeshire. This does involve an additional cost but gives the opportunity to complete some of the practical skills which form part of the practical endorsement. It gives students the opportunity to develop their ecological skills in a variety of habitats including sand dunes, rock pools, streams and forests.
Biology can lead to degree choices from anatomy to zoology and careers from medicine and microbiology to optometry and oceanography based anywhere from a laboratory to the Antarctic!
There are three papers and a practical endorsement. The practical endorsement is a non-exam assessment.
|Biological processes||2 hours 15 minutes||37% of A Level|
|Biological diversity||2 hours 15 minutes||37% of A Level|
|Unified Biology||1 hour 30 minutes||26% of A Level|
|Practical endorsement||reported separately as a pass or fail but does not contribute to the overall examination grade|
Head of Department: Gemma Sims