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Welcome to A Level Biology at Kent College. The course is designed to be a natural continuation of GCSE/IGCSE Biology, with an emphasis on developing your subject knowledge and exploring modern applications within biology. If you have an interest in the study of living organisms and enjoy practical investigations in the laboratory or as fieldwork, you will find the content of the course both rewarding and demanding. In addition to classroom theory and practical lessons, there will be visits to relevant establishments and practical ecology excursions.


Entry requirements

The minimum entry requirement for the course is grade 8 at GCSE/IGCSE Biology or grades 8,8 at GCSE/IGCSE Double Award Science. Sound mathematical skills are also required, as is a working knowledge of Chemistry and Physics.   

Course overview

The content of the OCR (A) Specification is divided into six modules that are further divided into key biological topics.
Module Content
Module 1 Development of practical skills in Biology
Module 2 Foundations in Biology
Module 3 Exchange and transport
Module 4 Biodiversity, evolution and disease
Module 5 Communication, homeostasis and energy
Module 6 Genetics, evolution and ecosystems


Teaching of practical skills is an integral part of the course and students will be required to develop their skills (planning, implementation, analysis and evaluation) in preparation for the written examinations. Coursework no longer exists and has been replaced with Practical Endorsement for biology. Throughout the two year course, student’s practical competence (use of particular apparatus and techniques) will be recorded and assessed internally, by staff at Kent College.

Assessment Overview

At the end of the two year course (in the June series) students will take three mandatory external examinations, covering each of the six units.

Paper Assessment / Marks / Exam / Balance
Paper 1

Biological Processes -  2 Hours and 15 Minutes - 100 Marks - 37 %
(Modules 1,2,3 and 5)

Part A - 15 marks

Multiple choice

Part B - 85 marks

Structured questions (theory and practical skills)

Paper 2

Biological Diversity - 2 Hours and 15 Minutes - 100 Marks - 37 %
(Modules 1,2,4 and 6)

Part A - 15 marks

Multiple choice

Part B - 85 marks

Structured questions (theory and practical skills)

Paper 3

Unified Biology - 1 Hour and 30 Minutes - 70 Marks - 26 %
(All modules)

Structures questions and extended response questions, covering theory and practical skills

Non-exam part of the course Practical Endorsement for Biology

Reported separately (does not count towards A Level)

Career Opportunities

A Level Biology helps to develop a broad scientific background and enhance problem solving, numeracy and practical skills.  When combined with a variety of other A Level subjects, it can lead to a range of careers including Healthcare, Research, Veterinary, Law and Journalism.

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