A Level Biology
Biology (AQA 7402)
The new linear GCE specification is designed to follow on from GCSE dual sciences or from GCSE Biology as a separate science. Our objective in Biology is to develop a student’s interest in the many different fields of Biology, whilst ensuring they appreciate how biological research is carried out through knowledge of How Science Works. We also consider the ethical dilemmas often involved in the advancement of Biological diagnoses, treatment and technology. The course provides foundations for further study in biological sciences and medicine whilst developing relevant practical skills. To this end, 12 required practical tasks are assessed across the two year course. One required practical is conducted during a compulsory field trip to Malham Tarn at the end of the L6 year.
A Level Biology – Assessment by three written examination papers:
Paper 1: 7402/1 - Written examination paper (2 hours – 35% of A-level)
This paper consists of 76 marks of short and long answer questions, followed by 15 marks of extended response questions. The topics examined are biological molecules, cells, exchange of substances, and variation and genetics.
Paper 2: 7402/2 - Written examination paper (2 hours – 35% of A-level)
This paper consists of 76 marks of short and long answer questions, followed by a short 15 mark section of comprehension questions. The topics covered are as follows; energy transfers, responding to the environment, genetics, populations, evolution, ecosystems and control of gene expression. This paper also assesses relevant practical skills.
Paper 3: Written examination paper (2 hours – 30% of A-level)
The paper contains 38 marks of structured questions based on practical techniques, a short 15 mark section on critical analysis of experimental data and a final 25 mark section where one essay is chosen from a choice of two titles.
Links to other subjects
Biology at A-level compliments all three other science courses and can be combined with Mathematics and Chemistry for those wishing to pursue careers in medicine, dentistry and veterinary science. It can also complement Psychology and Geography or be undertaken simply for the love of the subject.
Links to HE courses and beyond
A good grade in A-level Biology is well thought of by University admissions tutors and is useful for those pupils who wish to study medicine, dentistry and veterinary sciences. Biology A-level provides pupils with many transferable skills including data processing and high levels of literacy and numeracy.