Exam Board: OCR Biology A

A Level Biology is a challenging and interesting course during which students develop an understanding of living organisms and their interactions with the environment alongside analytical and practical skills. Throughout the course students will learn about key biology concepts and will conduct a range of practical activities, which contribute to the practical endorsement certificate. Final assessment is via three exam papers.

Course content:

Development of practical skills in biology Practical skills are assessed in the written examination and through the practical endorsement certificate.

Foundations in biology Cell structure, Biological molecules, Nucleotides and nucleic acids, Enzymes, Biological membranes, Cell division, Cell diversity and cellular organisation

Exchange and transport Exchange surfaces, Transport in animals, Transport in plants

Biodiversity, evolution and disease Communicable diseases, Disease prevention and the immune system, Biodiversity, Classification and evolution

Communication, homeostasis and energy Communication and homeostasis, Excretion as an example of homeostatic control, Neuronal communication, Hormonal communication, Plant and animal responses, Photosynthesis, Respiration

Genetics, evolution and ecosystems Cellular control, Patterns of inheritance, Manipulating genomes, Cloning and biotechnology, Ecosystems, Populations and sustainability. 

Minimum entry requirements:

Grade 7 at GCSE Science (additional or separates) and grade 6 at GCSE mathematics.

Extracurricular activities:

Visits to lectures at local Universities, biology field course.

Progression routes and careers:

Students who study biology have access to a wide variety of choices of university courses including medicine, veterinary sciences, analytical or medical laboratory sciences or clinical biochemistry, genetics, microbiology, land-based and environmental sciences or marine biology.