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Biology AS level at Parkside School

Course description

The specification is divided into topics, each covering different key concepts in biology. Applications of biology are covered throughout the specification.

What are the benefits to students who study this OCR specification?

  • the specification has been developed in consultation with teachers, universities, research organisations (such as the Sanger Institute) and professional bodies (the Bioscience Federation and the Institute of Biology)
  • the specification is based upon the existing successful GCE Biology Specification
  • there is less emphasis on recall and more on understanding and application
  • It will be a terminal assessment model for both AS and A2.
  • there is straightforward assessment of practical skills using OCR-set tasks and (non-hierarchical) mark schemes

Your teachers will choose a series of tasks to assess your practical skills at both AS and A2.

Course content

AS Level

Mandatory/ Optional?

Unit title and Description

Assessment method & Weighting

Date for exams


F211: Cells, Exchange & Transport

  • cells
  • exchange & transport

1 hour written exam

AS Level – 30%

A level – 15%


End of Year 12 -

June 2014


F212: Molecules, Biodiversity, Food & Health

  • biological molecules
  • enzymes
  • biodiversity & classification
  • variation, adaptation & evolution
  • human interactions

1 hour 45 minutes written exam

AS level – 50%

A level – 25%


F213: Practical Skills in Biology 1

- internal assessment of practical skills (completed under exam conditions)

Internal assessment

AS LEVEL – 20%

A Level – 10%


Future opportunities

Progression to study A2 level Biology

Further information


How is this qualification assessed?

Four units (two at AS and two at A2) are externally assessed through written examination.

Two units (one at AS and one at A2) are internally assessed, moderated by post Units, and will assess students’ practical skills. The assessment uses OCR-set tasks and mark schemes.

Practical skills units are available in the June series only.


How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Parkside School directly.

Last updated date: 21 October 2014

Key information

  • Start date: Next September