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These results are a suggestion of courses you may want to explore but are by no means a definitive list and individual entry requirements do apply.

A-Level Biology

Practical Vs Theory


Course overview

Gain practical and written scientific skills to make connections with all living things around you. Biology literally means the study of life and if that’s not important, what is? Studying this broad subject will allow you to discover your area of interest and open the door to a fantastic range of interesting careers.


What Does The Programme Include

You will undertake 12 core practical units including; using microscopes to see cell division, dissection of animals or plant systems, aseptic technique to study microbial growth, investigating activity in cells and investigating animal behaviour. You will study in a variety of ways including worksheets, quizzes, research, practice exam questions, practicals, skills assessments, lab books, extended reading, group work and independent study.

Entry Requirements

The standard requirement for A Levels is 5 GCSEs at Grade 5/​C or above as a minimum for humanities subjects and 6/​B in maths for all subjects.

Each A Level subject has its own additonal entry requirement, please see below:

Grade 6/​B or above in maths and 6/​6/​B/​B in Combined Science or Grade 6/​B in maths and 6/​B in Biology plus 6/​B in Chemistry or Physics.

How The Course Will Be Assessed

This is a linear subject which means it is examined externally entirely at the end of year two. There will be end of year exams in June of your first year which will determine your progress and whether you can enter the second year. During the two years of study, you will be regularly assessed under test conditions to practise being able to understand and respond to the questions asked in the correct time allocation so that you are fully prepared for the final exams. There is an assessment calendar for A levels which includes timed assessment every 4 to 5 weeks. Feedback gained from these assessments will help you to develop your skills, target your revision and where necessary enable us to provide additional support How you will be assessed: In addition, you will be required to undertake a minimum of 12 assessed practicals and write up all supporting information in a lab book.

Additional Information

It is recommended that you check the entry requirements for the degree courses /​career paths you are considering. It is common to need chemistry and /​or maths alongside biology. You will be expected to attend maths for biologists sessions once per week if you do not take maths. A lab coat and safety glasses are required for this course, these can be purchased from the college and will cost approximately £15 or you can use the ones we have. You will also need a scientific calculator.

Potential Future Career

Example job roles:

  • Doctor
  • Clinical Molecular Geneticist
  • Nature Conservation Officer
  • Pharmacologist
  • Physiotherapist
  • Nurse
  • Research Scientist
  • Vet
  • Secondary School Teacher
  • Marine Biologist
  • Dentist

Studying further degrees in:

  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sport and Exercise Science
  • Medicine
  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Pathology
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacy
  • Chemistry

Course Content

You will study the following units:

  • Biological molecules
  • Cells
  • How organisms exchange substances with their environment
  • Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms
  • Energy transfers in and between organisms
  • How organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments
  • Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
  • The control of gene expression


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Learners benefit from a range of additional activities that broadens their experience and prepares them well for life after College.




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