Biology

A Level

Biology is a great choice of subject for students who want a career in health and clinical professions, such as medicine, dentistry, veterinary science, nursing, physiotherapy, pharmacy or optometry.

The course content also allows progression into degrees or apprenticeships in medical research, zoology, microbiology, biochemistry or genetics, as well as a wide range of science careers.

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Course content

Exam Board

AQA

Course Details

Year 1 (Y12)

1 Biological molecules

Biochemistry: Carbohydrates, Lipids, Proteins and DNA.

2 Cells

Cell structure, Cell Division Processes, the Immune System.

3 Organisms exchange substances with their environment

Gas Exchange in a Variety of Organisms, the Circulatory System, Digestion

4 Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms

Genes, Protein Synthesis, Taxonomy and Diversity.

 

Year 2 (Y13)

5 Energy transfers in and between organisms

Photosynthesis, Respiration, Ecosystems and Nutrient Cycles.

6 Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments

Nerves, Muscles and Homeostasis

7 Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems

Inheritance, Populations and Evolution

8 The Control of Gene Expression

Mutations, Gene Technology and Control of Gene Expression.

 

How is this course delivered?

A Level content is assessed through two 120-minute exams covering topics 1-4 (Y12) and 5-8 (Y13), plus the associated practical skills from the 12 required practical lessons in the course. The third exam covers data analysis and extended writing, featuring a choice of two essays.

The complete specification, together with past exam papers, can be seen on the AQA website: www.aqa.org.uk

Departmental Enrichment

The department offers lunchtime exam clinics and holiday intensive revision days as well as lots of additional help in-between lessons and by email.

There is an annual Ecology trip to a rocky shore and other residential trips are offered on a regular basis. Previous trips include a trip to London Zoo and the Science Museum as well as a trip to study Mediterranean Ecology in Barcelona.

The Biology Department at Wyke Sixth Form College

The department uses three specialist laboratories that are equipped to the highest standards. In addition, there is an open access computer area adjacent to the laboratories.

All students receive relevant textbooks along with printed module notes, past paper booklets and a wide range of handout materials.

The department makes wide ranging use of interactive online resources to facilitate independent learning.

Practical skills are an essential part of the course and our newly built, well equipped laboratories supported by our experienced teachers and skilled technicians, ensure opportunities are available to enhance learning, develop skills and confidence in this area.

Many of the teaching staff are, or have been, external examiners for A Level Biology.

Where can this course take me?

82% of Wyke students achieve A*-C grades, with 75% of students achieving at least 1 A*/A grades in their examinations.

Whilst over 70% of students progress onto university, a growing number of Wyke students are taking up opportunities on Higher Apprenticeships and Employment.

What can I do now that would help prepare me for this course?

The start of the A-level course is always challenging. You can start to prepare by reading around the above modules on the internet and in books. You can also attend the Wyke Start Taster days in summer to get a good introduction to the course.

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