The aim of the course is to develop a logical approach to solving problems as well as scientific curiosity in the mechanisms that form the basis of life on Earth. It does this via engaging and interesting studies in how organisms function, from the biochemical and cellular levels, to developing an appreciation for anatomy and physiology, and further onto ecological aspects of how all organisms fit together within the Earth biosphere.

Course Content – Year 12

  • Biological molecules, carbohydrates, protein / enzymes lipids, nucleic acids, DNA replication, water/inorganic ions, cells, cell structure, eukaryotic/prokaryotic cells, microscopy, mitosis, cell membrane transport, cell recognition/immune system.
  • Organisms exchanging substances with their environment, the implications of Surface Area: Volume ratio, gas exchange, digestion & absorption, mass transport /circulatory system, genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms, DNA, genes and chromosomes, DNA synthesis, genetic diversity / mutation / meiosis / adaptation, species and taxonomy, biodiversity /communities, investigating diversity.

Course Content – Year 13

  • Energy transfers in/between organisms, photosynthesis, respiration, energy and eco-systems, nutrient cycles
  • Organisms responding to their environment survival & response/ receptors/ control of heart rate, nervous co-ordination, skeletal muscle, homeostasis/ negative feedback/ control blood water and glucose.
  • Genetics, evolution & ecosystems Inheritance, populations, Evolution leading to speciation, populations in ecosystems.
  • Control of gene expression, mutations, gene expression/cancer, regulation of transcription and translation, using genome projects, recombinant DNA technology, identification/diagnosis of heritable conditions, genetic fingerprinting.

This is a two-year linear course with examinations only sat at the end of the course covering both Year 12 and Year 13. Teacher assessed practical work is carried out throughout the two year course and will be tested in the final A level examinations.

Is this course right for me?

As a result of studying Biology to A level, students will learn how to be analytical, critical and logical; student’s scientific interest would be partly sated and definitely stimulated. Consequently, Biology makes an interesting and useful addition to any subject combination for any potential career.

What can I do next?

Pure sciences of Botany, Zoology, Biology, Physiology, Genetics and Biochemistry. Also an increasingly long list of applied sciences such as Medicine, Veterinary Science, Dentistry, Physiotherapy, Sports Science, Agriculture,
Animal Husbandry, Soil Science, Ecology, Microbiology, Nursing, Brewing, Pharmacology, Pharmacy, Ophthalmology, Horticulture, Food Science, Genetic Engineering and
Gene Therapy.

Subject minimum entry requirement

Grade 6 or higher in GCSE Biology or equivalent.

What previous students have said about Biology at QEGS:

“I used to think Biology was complicated and always struggled with it at my previous school, but the teachers here make it so easy to understand.”

“I have really enjoyed the genetics and genetic engineering part of the course, particularly the gel electrophoresis and DNA experiments.”

“I feel that the course has given me a broad knowledge of the topic which has prepared me well to study Biology at university.”

Mr DM Moriarty Eames
Subject Leader of Biology