A-Level

 

A level Biology

Biology is one of the most popular A Level options.

 

Entrance requirements

To make a success of this A level you require at least a grade BB in GCSE Double Award Science. Only in exceptional circumstances will a pupil with a double grade C be considered for A level Biology. Students with a BB grade will have their performance in the three sciences at GCSE closely examined to ensure that they are making an appropriate choice.

 

The subject content of AS/A2 Biology is divided into 6 modules over two years.

 

AS Course (Year13)

AS Module 1: Molecules and cells

This involves the study of molecules (including enzymes) and cells. DNA is studied as a fundamental unit of continuity. Its role in the processes of cell division (mitosis & meiosis) and its application in recombinant DNA technology (genetic engineering) are examined.

 

AS Module 2: Organisms and biodiversity.

This module deals with transport and exchange mechanisms in plants and mammals. Adaptation of organisms and biodiversity are also studied with an emphasis on local contexts. An integral part of the AS course is the year 13 field trip to Magilligan and Portrush where students study sand dune ecology and zonation on a rocky shore.

 

AS Module 3: Practical Skills

This involves the submission of two practical tasks marked by the class teacher.

 

Year 13 field trip

 

A2 Course(Year 14)

A2:1 Module 4: Physiology and Ecosystems

This unit deals with Homeostasis, Immunity, Coordination & Control in plants and animals and Ecosystems. As part of the Ecosystems topic students can now study the Adverse Affect of Human Activity on the Environment, which includes Northern Ireland perspectives.

 

A2:2 Module5:Biochemistry, Genetics and Evolutionary Trends.

This module includes Respiration, Photosynthesis, DNA as the Genetic Code, Gene Technology, Genes and Patterns of Inheritance, Mechanism of Change, Kingdom Plantae and Kingdom Animalia.

 

A2:3 Module 6: Assessment of Investigation and Practical Skills

 

In addition A level Biology students visit Loughry College to examine the impact of human activity on the environment.

Scheme of Assessment

 

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

        • Module

          How it is assessed

          Weighting

          AS 1

          1½ hour written examination in January of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 2

          1½ hour written examination in May/June of Year 13

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          AS 3

          Two practical tasks marked by the class

          20% of AS and 10% of the A level award

          A2 1

          2 hour written examination in January of Year 14

          40% of A2 and 20% of the A level award

          A2 2

          2 hour written examination in May/June of Year 14

          40% of AS and 20% of the A level award

          A2 3

          Internal assessment of a whole practical investigation

           

          20% of A2 and 10% of the A level award

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