GCSE biology

This subject is compulsory for all students

GCSE in Biology

Why study this subject?

Biology offers you the opportunity to gain a good understanding across a broad range of rich and relevant topics including human biology, organisms, evolution and the environment. Biology is the study of life – playing a crucial role in our everyday existence. Advances in new technologies such as genetics have made this subject more exciting than ever. The study of biology will prepare you for a variety of careers where you can make a difference in the world.

What will I learn?

Over the course of the three years you will study genes, electrical and chemical signals in the body and the use and abuse of drugs. You will also build on your Key Stage 3 understanding of plants and animals and learn how they are dependent on each other within an ecosystem. You will also learn about what’s inside living cells and how substances move around an organism, homeostasis, photosynthesis and respiration, inheritance and organisms in their environment.

How will I be taught?

At the start of the GCSE course you will be set according to your ability and prior attainment. This will ensure appropriate pace and challenge in you learning and thus support you in achieving the best possible grade. Biology lessons have a strong focus on group practical work and developing analytical and data-manipulation skills. Every lesson will have clearly set objectives so you can review your progress.

How will I be assessed?

Your class work and homework will be regularly marked and feedback given will ensure you know how to improve your attainment. Regular tests will allow you to practise exam-style questions and improve your understanding of the course.

What qualifications will I get at the end of the course?

You will achieve either a GCSE in Biology or in Science.

What can this qualification lead to afterwards?

A good qualification in Biology is highly prized by future employers. The wide range of topics covered and the skills developed during the course will enable you to progress into a diverse range of careers including medicine, dentistry, animal care, nursing, pharmacology, environmental research and many more.

Post-16 Progression

A level Biology is a popular and challenging A-Level course open to all who achieve at least a grade 6 in GCSE Biology. This supports applications to a number of degree options at University, including further study in the Sciences, Medicine, Nursing, Zoology, Microbiology, Biomedical science and more.

How much homework will I have to do?

There will be one piece of homework set per week, but you are also expected to work independently to develop your knowledge and understanding of Biology.

Where can I find out more about this qualification?

More details can be found at http://www.sciencelab.org.uk/resourcezone/biology.php or by speaking to any member of the Science department.


King Edward VI Academy Trust Birmingham is a charitable company limited by guarantee. Registered number 10654935. Registered office: Foundation Office, Edgbaston Park Road, Birmingham, B15 2UD. Academy tel: 0121 464 4428.

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