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Biology A Level at The Trinity Catholic School

Course description

1 Topic 1 and 2
Written examination – 40% of AS, 20% of A-Level
2 Topic 3 and 4
Written examination – 40% of AS, 20% of A-Level
3 Practical skills and written research coursework
Research coursework – 20% of AS, 10% of A-Level
Unit 1
Topic 1: Lifestyle, Health and Risk.
The circulatory system, importance of diet and other lifestyle factors in
maintaining good health, and reducing the risk of coronary heart disease.
Topic 2: Genes and Health.
The structure of DNA and cell membranes, social and ethical issues
surrounding the diagnosis and treatment of genetic conditions, focusing on
Cystic Fibrosis, using genetic screening techniques and the promise of gene
Unit 2
Topic 3: The Voice of the Genome.
The development of multi-cellular organisms from single cell to complex
individuals including the use of stem cells, gene expression and cell
Topic 4: Biodiversity and Natural Resources.
Studies the biodiversity within habitats and links it with adaptation and natural
selection, and how zoos conserve endangered species and maintains their
genetic diversity.
Unit 3
Students have to do a research project on a biological topic of their choice.
Students will be assessed on their ability to describe the biological based
methods and processes in context of their problem, for example, ‘How do we
save polar bears from extinction’ or ‘Will we ever prevent TB’.

4 Topic 5 and 6
Written examination - 40% of A2, 20% of A-Level
5 Topic 7 and 8
Written examination – 40% of A2, 20% of A-Level
6 Report of an experimental investigation
Coursework - 20% of A2, 10% of A-Level
Unit 4
Topic 5: On the wild side
The importance of photosynthesis which underpins the majority of
ecosystems. Analysing evidence for global warming and its effects.
Topic 6: Infection, immunity and forensics.
How forensic pathologists use a wide variety of analytical techniques to
identify a body and establish time of death, as well as investigating the
invading pathogens and their hosts the role of our immune system and why
many people in the world still die of infectious diseases.
Unit 5
Topic 7: Run for your life.
The physiological adaptations that enable humans, particularly sports people,
and other animals to undertake strenuous exercise and looks at biochemical
requirements for respiration and muscle physiology.
Topic 8: Grey Matter.
How the nervous system enables us to see and how nerves work. It
investigates imbalances in brain chemicals and the effect of ecstasy on the
brain, and considers nature verses nurture on brain development.
Unit 6
The coursework forms an individual investigation where students have to
carry out an extended practical project, for example ‘Investigating the effects
of caffeine on reaction time’. Students will produce a written report on an
experimental investigation they have devised and carried out.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact The Trinity Catholic School directly.

Last updated date: 05 November 2014

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1-2 Years