Exam Board: EDEXCEL
Biology is a vast and increasingly important subject in today’s world, encompassing many topics at the frontiers of modern science. It is relevant to everyone’s life - consider the role of health and fitness, medical science, food and drink production and our interactions with the natural world. It helps you understand some of the ‘whys’ and ‘hows’ of life on our planet - from the exciting advances recently made in genetics to the importance of conserving species which have existed through long periods of time; from how our bodies work to what the inside of a cell actually looks like.
Biology A Level is universally recognised as a strongly academic qualification and as such will open a variety of doors in higher education and careers. It is especially relevant for veterinary science, medicine, nursing, physiotherapy and environmental sciences but can equally support options in biotechnology, forensics, business, education, sports science and so on.
Lifestyle, Transport, Genes and Health
Biological molecules. Transport mechanism within cells. The heart & blood circulation. Diet, lifestyle & the cardiovascular system. Health, risk and treatments. DNA & the genetic code. Genetic issues e.g. screening & gene therapy.
AS 40% A2 20%
Development, Plants and the Environment
Cell structure. Cell division and specialisation in plants and animals. Stem cell research. Biodiversity, Natural Resources and Conservation of Endangered Species. Natural Selection.
AS 40% A2 20%
Practical Biology and Research Skills
Pupils write a report, of their choice, examining research which has been carried out to solve a particular Biological problem (max 2000 words).
Practical skills will be assessed throughout the year by the subject teacher.
AS 20% A2 10%
The Natural Environment and Species Survival
Investigating habitats. Energy transfer. How photosynthesis really works. The role of the scientific community in evaluating scientific evidence e.g. for evolution and global warming. DNA analysis & profiling. Bacteria and viruses. Infectious diseases and immunology.
Energy, Exercise and Coordination
How muscles really work. The biochemistry of respiration (energy release). Improving body performance. Homeostasis. Hormonal coordination. The nervous system. Brain structure and development. Imbalances in brain chemistry. Issues in drug development.
Practical Biology and Investigative Skills
Pupils will complete a written report of an experimental investigation, which they have devised and carried out. The investigation will be carried out during a Field Trip.
You could take this course to complement other advanced level courses that may overlap with Biology such as Chemistry and Physics or more general subjects that may not relate to the sciences. You could also take it to prepare for higher education, or to prepare for the A2 part of an Advanced GCE in Biology, which could lead onto other science related subjects or more general higher education courses. With further training, you could go into a job related to Biology such as Medicine, Nursing, Veterinary Science, Biotechnology, Forensics, Education, Science Technology, Sports Science, Business Science, Marine Biology to name a few. You could also go straight into a job as the AS GCE is a recognised qualification that will help you to develop the basic skills, understanding and knowledge that many employers across lots of industries are looking for.