Biology A Level

Biology A Level

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A Level                                                                   Exam Board: AQA

No subject is moving faster than Biology. With recent advances in our knowledge of genetics, the sequencing of the human genome, and a fierce worldwide debate raging over evolution, stem cell research, cloning, GM crops and many other topics, there is no greater time to be studying Biology.

 Entrance requirements:

A GCSE grade of at least 7 in Biology is required.  In addition Mathematics should have been passed with a 7, and a sound knowledge of Chemistry is important.

While taking Biology on its own with no other Sciences is perfectly fine, the ideal mix of subjects for Lower Sixth Biology is Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics.

 Career opportunities:

For Degree courses in Biology, Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Forensic, Microbiology, Marine Biology and others, a combination with Chemistry and often Mathematics is usually taken.  A Level Chemistry is essential at virtually all Medical Schools for Medicine, Dentistry or Veterinary Science.

An A Level in Biology can lead to a variety of careers as well as providing a means of entry to almost any Higher Education course.  Its use for entry to some specific courses has already been mentioned but there are also many paramedical careers such as Nursing, Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Chiropody, Osteopathy, Radiography and Pharmacy for which an A Level in Biology is needed.

Field course:

Biology is a very hands-on, practical subject.  Several field trips are planned as part of the course. The week long course at the end of August is compulsory for all those taking Biology in the Upper Sixth (in view of COVID 19 whether or not this trip will take place is under constant review) and will cost in the region of £450.

 Structure of course:

The Lower Sixth syllabus content involves a study of cells at the molecular level and many aspects of physiology and disease. The Upper Sixth syllabus content involves further study of physiology and the key life processes and allows some specialisation in some of the modern aspects of the subject.

Biology is concerned with the origins, structure, physiology and behaviour of the living world, both plants and animals, including man.  Many important aspects of modern life such as disease, pollution, conservation, world food supplies and public health are considered to relate the subject to the needs of mankind.

Although the study of Biology A Level can lead to Higher Education and a career in related sciences, it is also a means of gaining an understanding and appreciation of living organisms and their environments.