Biology A Level

The Curriculum Purpose

Students in A-Level Biology lessons are inspired to learn about the natural world and the interactions with all the organisms living within it. Each lesson explores the theories, principles and intricacies involved in living systems and is a steppingstone towards developing and nourishing the passion students hold for Biology. The specification is divided into topics, which cover the key ideas in Biology. Modelling and exam skills are at the forefront of teaching with practical work playing a pivotal supporting role in our teaching - the required practical activities will give students the opportunity to embed their skills and knowledge. The A-level practicals ensure that students are able to access the Common Practical Assessment Criteria (CPAC) requirements.

Key concepts that underpin the subject area

3.1 Biological molecules

• Monomers and polymers

• Carbohydrates

• Lipids

• Proteins

• Enzymes

• Nucleic Acids

• DNA replication


• Water

• Inorganic ions

3.2 Cells

• Cell structure

• Viruses

• Methods of studying cells

• All cells arise from other cells

• Transport across cell membranes

• Cell recognition and the immune system

3.3 Organisms exchange substances with their environment

• Surface area to volume ratio

• Gas exchange

• Digestion and absorption

• Mass transport

3.4 Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms

• DNA, genes and chromosomes

• Protein synthesis

• Genetic diversity

• Adaptation

• Species and taxonomy

• Biodiversity within a community

• Investigating diversity

3.5 Energy transfers in and between organisms

• Photosynthesis

• Respiration

• Energy and ecosystems

• Nutrient cycles

3.6 Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments

• Stimuli and response

• Receptors

• Control of heart rate

• Nervous coordination

• Synaptic transmission

• Skeletal muscles

• Homeostasis

3.7 Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems

• Inheritance

• Populations

• Evolution and speciation

• Populations in ecosystems

3.8 The control of gene expression

• Mutations

• Gene expression

• Regulating transcription and translation

• Cancer

• Genome projects

• Gene technologies


Key Features of Learning

All lessons have a clear objective, outlined to students near the beginning of the lesson. There are currently 3 teachers for A-level Biology, supported with practical work by a Biology specialist technician.

What you will see in A Level Biology Lessons?

• Excellent teaching and learning

• Adaptive teaching strategies

• Formative assessment strategies (for example, multiple choice hinge questions)

• Exam practise

• Routines, high expectations and praise

• References to careers and the wider world, where relevant

• Deep thinking about the scientific concepts being covered

• Participation from all expected

• Think, pair, share activities What you will see in A Level Biology folders

• Date and titles underlined

• Keywords and definitions

• Self and peer assessment in green

• Teacher feedback in red

• A range of classwork and homework tasks

What formative assessment you will see in A Level Biology lessons?

• Quizzes that activate prior knowledge

• Cold calling

• Kahoot

• Quizziz

• Multiple choice hinge questioning

• Exam questions

• Research on topics

• Presentations

• Pre-reading and then presenting the material

• End of topic tests

What extra-curricular is available in A Level Biology?

• Support in KS3 and KS4 Science Club

• Supporting KS3 and KS4 Open Evenings

• Biology Olympiad

• Biology in Action Conference

• Residential trip to a Field Study Centre


Page Downloads Date  
AL Level Biology Long Term Curriculum Plan 06th Jul 2022 Download