Biology (OCR A)

Everyone has an interest in Biology, whether it be related to how life began, what are living things are made up of, how do they work and how do they interact with the environment, health and fitness, diseases, concern for the environment or views on genetic engineering, the list could go on and on! For a lot of people the human species is of particular interest, in terms of how the human body works and the harmful and beneficial effects that we have on the Earth. The A level Biology course encourages students to explore and seek answers to these questions whilst developing their own critical scientific thought process and a wide range of practical scientific skills.

Biology is the broadest of the three sciences and has links with many other subjects including Chemistry, Physical Education and Geography. The A level equips students with wide ranging skills that can be used in a variety of settings beyond A level, whether that be further education, studying degrees such as Biomedical Sciences, Environmental Science, Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy, or in an employment setting.


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
The A Level is composed of three exams and a practical endorsement.
1: Biological processes: Written exam covering modules 1, 2, 3 & 5, 2 hours 15 mins, 37% of A Level
2: Biological diversity: Written exam covering modules 1, 2, 4 & 6, 2 hours 15 mins, 37% of A Level
3: Unified Biology: Written exam covering all modules 1-6, 1 hour 30 mins, 26% of A Level

Practical endorsement: non-exam assessment that is reported separately to the A Level grade.

Minimum Entry Requirements: 5 GCSEs at grade 5 or above, including grade 6/6 in Double Science or grade 6 in Biology as a separate science. Due to the increased mathematical emphasis of the new courses we also require Mathematics GCSE grade 6.

Updated September 2020