Biology GCSE

Entry Qualifications

In addition to the standard college entry criteria (below) this course requires either GCSE Combined Science grade 3,3 or GCSE Biology grade 3. Equivalent qualifications may be considered.

What will I study?

The GCSE Biology course is designed to develop your scientific knowledge and the conceptual understanding of biology. During the course, you will:

• Carry out compulsory Practical Activities that will enhance your understanding of biology theory and practical skills

• Learn Mathematical Skills and apply them to Biological scenarios

• Learn how to ‘Work Scientifically’ to develop your investigative and evaluative skills and to become equipped on how to answer scientific questions about the world around you

How will I study?

There are seven teaching units with practical skills, mathematical skills and working scientifically embedded throughout the course.

4.1 Cell Biology 4.5 Homeostasis and response

4.2 Organisation 4.6 Inheritance, variation and evolution

4.3 Infection and response 4.7 Ecology

4.4 Bioenergetics

Key Ideas.

The complex and diverse phenomena of the natural world can be described in terms of a small number of key ideas in biology. These key ideas are of universal application, and we have embedded them throughout the subject content. They underpin many aspects of the science assessment.

How is the course examined?

There will be two written papers in May and/or June. Both papers are worth 50% of the final grade, and the second paper will include synoptic assessment. The exam papers are taken at either Foundation or Higher level depending on ability.

Questions in the written exams will draw on the knowledge and understanding students have gained by carrying out the practical activities listed below. These questions will count for at least 15% of the overall marks for the qualification. Many of our questions will also focus on investigative skills and how well students can apply what they know to practical situations often in novel contexts.


Where next?

After successful completion of the course you can progress on to L3 courses (A-Level Biology and/or BTEC Applied Science), or fill in the gaps in your GCSEs to progress on to specific careers such as Nursing or Teaching.

What does the course combine well with?

Biology can be combined with any other subject.

College Entry Requirements

Five GCSEs at grade 3 or above including English Language and Maths