Biology AS & A Level
This course is ideal for anyone who is fascinated by living things and how they work. Topics covered include cells, molecules, biodiversity, biotechnology and the environment.
This course allows you to develop practical skills and the conceptual knowledge of essential biological topics. The course relates each topic to meaningful and interesting contexts, and you will develop crucial transferable skills such as competence in mathematical techniques and problem solving.
There is an emphasis on practical skills taught in specialist biology labs that are well-equipped, allowing you to work in small groups or individually.
A minimum of 4 subjects at grade 5 or above at GCSE plus English Language at grade 5 or above. You must have a grade 5 in Maths, 5 in Biology (if taken) otherwise 5 in Additional or 55 in Double Science.
What will I study?
- Development of Practical Skills in Biology
- Cells, Chemicals for Life, Transport and Gas Exchange
- Cell Division, Development, and Disease Control
- Energy, Reproduction and Populations
- Genetics, Control and Homeostasis
Practical endorsement activities are taught throughout the duration of the course.
Method of delivery
You will typically be in College four days per week, with lesson style varying according to subject. In-College delivery is supported by online resources, and students develop strong independent learning skills to equip them for their next steps.
How will I be assessed?
You will receive a variety of classwork and homework exercises throughout the course allowing you to practise the theory and skills you have learnt during the course. This will include past paper questions, enabling you to develop the technique needed to be successful in the A Level exams.
In addition to theoretical work, the science courses have a significant practical element and you will undertake a series of practical activities that allow you to develop your skills and techniques. You will be continually assessed on this element of the course, with feedback provided to allow you to improve and meet the requirements. On completion of the course you will receive your exam grade together with a Practical Endorsement, which shows that you have the skills and ability to work in a laboratory and use the equipment safely to carry out practical tasks and research.
Good course combinations
Biology works well with most subject combinations, and in particular Chemistry, Psychology and Physical Education.
Your next steps
Studying Biology develops the biological knowledge and skills to study a bioscience related degree. You will also gain a wealth of transferable skills such as problem solving, data analysis and teamwork that are valued in many degree programmes. Past students have studied a range of courses including biology, chemistry and biochemistry, medicine, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, environmental science, geography, geology, physiotherapy, psychology, marine biology and sports studies.
“Studying Biology is really exciting as it’s a science you can relate to and think about how amazing your body really is. We have the opportunity to do lots of experiments in Biology and Chemistry, which is great as it’s an alternative way of seeing what you are learning in action."