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Biology - AS / A level at King Edward VI CEVC Upper School

Course description

This course will enable you to

* develop greater understanding of biological principles

* develop greater expertise in practical work and form links between theory and experiments

* continue to enjoy and further develop a personal interest in the study of living organisms

* recognise the value and responsible use of biology in society

* develop further your awareness of new developments in biology in a changing world.


Entry requirements

GCSE grade B in Biology or Additional Science

GCSE grade B in Mathematics


The course is split into six modules. Modules 1 to 4 constitute the stand-alone AS Level qualification. Modules 1 to 6, combined with a Practical Endorsement, constitute the full A Level.

Unit 1 - Development of Practical Skills in Biology

Development of planning, implementing, analysis and evaluation This module underpins the whole of the specification, and covers the practical skills that students will develop throughout the course. The practical skills in this module can be assessed within written examinations.

Unit 2 - Foundations in Biology This module includes cell structure, biological molecules, DNA and nucleic acids, enzymes, biological membranes, cell division, cell diversity and organisation. This module will cover key concepts required throughout the remaining modules.

Unit 3 - Exchange and Transport This module includes exchange surfaces, transport in animals and transport in plants.

Unit 4 - Biodiversity, Evolution and Disease This module includes communicable diseases, disease prevention and the immune system, biodiversity and classification and evolution.

Unit 5 - Communications, Homeostasis and Energy This module includes communication and homeostasis, excretion, neuronal and hormonal communication, plant and animal responses, respiration & photosynthesis.

Unit 6 - Genetics, evolution and Ecosystems This module includes, cellular control, patterns of inheritance, manipulating genomes, cloning and biotechnology, ecosystems, populations and sustainability.


At AS Level, students will be assessed through two examination papers, each lasting 1 hour 30 minutes. The exams will cover both theory and practical skills-based questions.

At A Level, students will be assessed through three examinations. Papers 1 and 2 will last 2 hours 15 minutes and paper 3 will last 1 hour 30 minutes. The exams will cover both theory and practical skills-based questions. Synoptic assessment will appear across all papers. Students will also receive a practical endorsement alongside their A Level qualification, indicating the completion of a variety of practical activities.

Future opportunities

  • Follow a degree course in Biology, Biomedical Science, Environmental Science, Medicine, Veterinary Science, Nursing, Dentistry, Psychology, Pharmacy, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Zoology, Forensic Science or many more courses with direct links
  • Enter a Higher National course in Biological Science and related programmes
  • Employment in areas such as healthcare, land management or technical work.

Further information

This course will appeal to those students who:

  • are passionate about studying living organisms
  • enjoy carrying out investigations in the laboratory or as fieldwork
  • are interested in current developments in Biology and their impact on society
  • are keen to develop powers of observation, analytical and evaluative skills

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact King Edward VI CEVC Upper School directly.

Last updated date: 06 January 2016
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