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Biology A level at Long Road Sixth Form College

Course description

Biology examines how molecules, cells and organs work, and how organisms operate in their environment. There is a strong focus on applications of biology in medicine, such as the study of infectious diseases, and industry. There is a strong emphasis on the human side of the subject: you will examine subjects ranging from lung function to genetics and genetic engineering. 

Year 1 course content

Lifestyle, transport, genes and health

You will study the heart and circulation and develop your data analysis skills by looking at research into risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease. You will study biomolecules, cell transport, genetics and gene therapy as well as developing skills for presenting an argument on ethical issues in Biology.

Development, plants and the environment

You will investigate how organisms develop from a single fertilised egg to a whole multicellular organism, including DNA, protein synthesis and epigenetics. You will also study biodiversity, classification, plant transport and plant products.

Year 2 course content

The natural environment and species survival

You will study how atoms and energy flow through ecosystems, photosynthesis, evolution, biological forensics, DNA profiling, infectious diseases and the issues surrounding global warming and climate change.

Energy, exercise and co-ordination

Here you will look at respiration, homeostasis, how muscles work, joints and joint repair, the nervous system, brain structure, visual development, hormones and how the Human Genome Project is helping to find new treatments for brain disorders such as Parkinson’s disease.

All units are examined at the end of Year 2

Practical Endorsement

Biology is a practical subject, and we place a strong emphasis on developing good practical skills. During the two years, you will complete a large amount of practical work, and eighteen of these experiments will count towards the practical endorsement.

Course content

Year 1 course content

Lifestyle, transport, genes and health

You will study the heart and circulation and develop your data analysis skills by looking at research into risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease. You will study biomolecules, cell transport, genetics and gene therapy as well as developing skills for presenting an argument on ethical issues in Biology. 

Development, plants and the environment

You will investigate how organisms develop from a single fertilised egg to a whole multicellular organism, including DNA, protein synthesis and epigenetics. You will also study biodiversity, classification, plant transport and plant products.

Year 2 course content

The natural environment and species survival

You will study how atoms and energy flow through ecosystems, photosynthesis, evolution, biological forensics, DNA profiling, infectious diseases and the issues surrounding global warming and climate change.

Energy, exercise and co-ordination

Here you will look at respiration, homeostasis, how muscles work, joints and joint repair, the nervous system, brain structure, visual development, hormones and how the Human Genome Project is helping to find new treatments for brain disorders such as Parkinson’s disease.

General and practical applications in Biology

This paper will assess all of Biology A-level with an emphasis on drawing together concepts from different topics. You will be challenged on your conceptual and theoretical understanding of experimental methods. There will also be a pre-released scientific article which will underpin one section of the paper.

All five topics are examined at the end of Year 2.

Practical Endorsement

Biology is a practical subject, and we place a strong emphasis on developing good practical skills. Over the course of the two years, you will complete a large amount of practical work, and eighteen of these experiments will count towards the practical endorsement.

Entry requirements

At least 7 GCSEs at Grade 4 in a range of subjects including English at Grade 4. You need higher tier Mathematics at minimum Grade 6.  Science and Additional Science at higher tier must be at least 6,6, and if you have studied the Sciences separately, you will need a Grade 6 in at least two, including Biology.  Only Science GCSE courses which have a high proportion of external assessment will normally be considered.

Assessment

All five topics are examined at the end of Year 2.

Future opportunities

There is an exceptionally wide range of careers available to Biology students. These range from lab-based or field work research anywhere in the world to medical and health related careers. Amongst many others, careers may be found in the private sector in biotech companies, scientific publishing or environmental consultancy or in the public sector in fisheries, forestry or public health.   

Some university courses in medical and biological subjects also require A level Chemistry. Physics and/or Maths may be useful if you are interested in a research career. Biology is also a good basis for the study of Physical Education and for some Psychology degrees (with A level Psychology).

Students who completed their course in 2017 are taking, for example, Biomedical Sciences at Manchester University, Biology at Nottingham University, Biomedical Science at Sheffield University, Zoology at Southampton University, Animal Management at Bedford College, Marine Biology at Swansea University and Biology at Leeds University.

 

 

Further information

Visit: www.longroad.ac.uk

Please come to our Open Evening on either 17th or 18th October 5-9pm.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 24 September 2018
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