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A Level Biology at St Bartholomew's School

Course description

This is a new two-year linear A Level course. There will be an option for students to complete an AS qualification at the end of Year 12. The AS exam is not, however, part of the full A Level course.

Course content

The aims of the course are to cover a broad base of biological theory and practice. We will look to expand students’ knowledge of medical technology and the ethical/moral implications of modern biotechnology. The course will cover the basics of biochemistry, cell biology, digestion, enzymes, the genetic code, exchange systems, energy in biological systems, homeostasis, nervous systems, ecology, inheritance, muscles, genetic engineering and evolution. The concepts and theory will be linked to an understanding of disease, drawing on examples from both animal and plant biology.

Entry requirements

Students choosing science in the Sixth Form are advised that the assessment style associated A Level qualifications means that if you achieve less than a B in GCSE Science or GCSE Biology you are generally unlikely to secure a pass in the A Level Biology exam.

Students who are keen to study science at an advanced level and have achieved a C at GCSE, are advised to follow the BTEC Level 3 Science course (see page 23), where the assessment style is continuous rather than through final exams. The success rate on the course for students with this entry profile is very high.


The course is largely teacher directed and it will be regularly tested. Students should expect to spend an equal amount of time on private study and directed lesson time. The practical components of the course will develop essential skills and will be assessed in class.

A Level: Three 2 hour exams and practical skills assessed in class.

Financial information

All students continuing into Year 13 will be expected to attend a residential field course – approximate cost £240. The course is at the end of the summer term following the AS exams.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Bartholomew's School directly.

Last updated date: 02 June 2015

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