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Biology A Level at Harlow College

Course description

The course covers a wide range of biology topics, from basic biochemistry and cell structure, body systems such as the digestive and respiratory systems, photosynthesis, genetics and inheritance, ecology and classification. A variety of teaching and learning strategies will be used throughout the course. Practical work is an important part of this course and students will complete a number of experiments, working on their practical skills and application of knowledge.

Course content

AS Level
1 year programme comprises 2 compulsory components; each weighted 50% of the AS and examined by a 1.5 hour written paper.
Component 1: Basic Biochemistry and Cell Structure
Component 2: Biodiversity and Physiology of Body Systems

A Level
2 year programme comprises 3 compulsory components; each weighted 33 ⅓% of the A level and examined by a 2.0 hour written paper.
Component 1:Energy for Life
Component 2: Continuity of Life
Component 3: Requirements for Life (including one optional topic from four)
Knowledge of core concepts gained at AS level will also be examined in these three components

In addition, at both AS and A level, all learners will complete a compulsory programme of specified practical work to support the assessment of biological theory and to gain competence in a range of biological practical techniques, reported separately and not contributing to the final grade.

Entry requirements

7 GCSEs Grades A* - C with an average points score of 45, plus GCSE Core and Additional Science at grade B or above and GCSE Maths at grade B or above.


Written examinations and log book of practical work completed.

Financial information

Free to learners aged 16-18. You will be expected to pay for stationery and textbooks. A range of financial support is available.

Paper, pens, ring binders, calculator are needed together with course text books and revision guides. A pen drive for saving work is advisable. Lab coats and other personal protective equipment for practical laboratory work will be provided by the College.

£25 per year to contribute towards chemicals and other materials used.

Future opportunities

Biology is a good supporting subject for many other career paths, and is respected academically by universities for entry to a variety of degree courses. Biology can lead to a wide range of careers such as Medicine, Veterinary, Pharmaceutical, Environmental and Conservation work, teaching, cosmetic industries, food technology, and forensic science.

Further information

Call 01279 868100 and talk to an Admissions Adviser about this course

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Harlow College directly.

Last updated date: 13 April 2016
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