Biology is one of the most exciting and rapidly developing subjects.

As well as being vital for biological natural science and allied disciplines such as medicine, it plays a valuable part in the general education of any student with an interest in the natural world and humanity. Our course develops a detailed understanding of many core biological topics and explores a range of exciting new areas of research, including stem cells and epigenetics.

The Lower Sixth course covers a range of concepts, including:

  • Biological molecules
  • Cell structure, function and replication
  • Transport – from cells to circulation
  • Classification and evolution
  • Respiration, gas exchange and transport of gases

The Upper Sixth course includes:

  • Biochemistry of photosynthesis
  • Ecosystems, including populations and energy transfers
  • Immunity
  • Patterns of inheritance and speciation
  • Modern applications of genetics, including stem cells, genetic engineering and modification of gene expression
  • Control systems, including nerves, hormones and homeostasis

Practical and investigative skills are an essential element of the A Level and they are developed throughout the course. We learn how to design valid investigations, research methods and outcomes, and present and critically analyse data. Students work towards the Practical Endorsement, a holistic assessment of students investigative skills which is excellent preparation for the experimental sciences at university.

The ability to link topics and identify what aspects of the course address synoptic themes is a key skill which is developed throughout the course.

The course is suitable for enthusiastic and hard-working students from a background of either Biology GCSE or a Double Award Science GCSE. Due to the broad syllabus, students must be well organised and prepared to commit time for independent study. Student suitability will be judged on an individual basis.

The course is excellent preparation not only for degree courses in Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Science, but also for the Biological Sciences, Microbiology, Agriculture, Marine and Freshwater Ecology and many others.

Exam board

Miss M L Pope
Head of Biology