A Level Biology
What does this qualification cover?
Students gain an exciting and fascinating insight into the world of Biology. The course covers the core concepts of Biology, the impacts of biological research and how that links to everyday life.
More generally, studying this subject at post-16 will provide you with a solid grounding in critical and analytical thinking, writing reports with clear communication skills as well as honing your teamworking and practical laboratory skills.
The course allows students to explore the chemistry shared by all life on Earth, study genetics of organisms in general, how genes are expressed, the evolution of species from common ancestors into the biodiversity we see around us today and the importance of conserving ecosystems in the natural world.
The course also takes an in-depth look at how organisms function at a cellular level and how human body systems such as the endocrine (hormonal), nervous, musculoskeletal and immune systems function.
You will study eight core content topics over the two years of the course. Module 1 consists of Biological Molecules which is integrated throughout modules two to six and you will build up a portfolio of evidence that you have achieved competency in a series of practical, researching and reporting skills. Knowledge of these experimental procedures and practical skills will also be assessed through examination.
The content is in six modules:
- Biological molecules
- Organisms exchange substances with their environment
- Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms
- Energy transfers in and between organisms
- Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments
- Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
- The control of gene expression
For the Assessment, a range of question types will be used, including those that require extended responses. Extended response questions will allow students to demonstrate their ability to construct and develop a sustained line of reasoning which is coherent, relevant, substantiated and logically structured. Extended responses may be in written English, extended calculations, or a combination of both, as appropriate to the question.
Interesting and challenging learning experience linking key biological ideas and understanding how they relate to each other. Developing transferable skills that are useful outside of scientific study and directly applicable to the world of work including:
- Investigative skills
- Problem solving
- Decision making
- Mathematical skills
- Analytical skills
- Communication skills
The practical endorsement aspect allows students to become competent in following procedures, investigative approaches using a range of scientific instruments and equipment, working safely, making and recording observations and researching, referencing and reporting.
Links to workplace
By choosing to study A Level biology as part of your programme of study you will gain access to a wide range of potential courses at University related to the life sciences, biotechnology and medical and health related industry sectors.
Gaining A Level Biology can also be useful in the fields of:
- Sports and fitness ( e.g. nutritionist, personal trainer).
- Engineering (biochemical, civil and mechanical engineering for example).
- The police and emergency services ( e.g. paramedic, crime scene investigator or police officer)
And many other potential careers.