GCSE Biology

What is GCSE Biology?

Biology is the study of the structure and function of living organisms, along with the study of the interactions of organisms with the environment.

The Specification

AQA GCSE Biology 8461 (Separate science award of a single GCSE in Biology). The scheme of assessment consists of two tiers: Foundation Tier and Higher Tier.  Foundation Tier assesses grades 1-4 (equivalent to grades G to C). Higher Tier assesses grades D to A* (equivalent to grades C to A*).

Course content

 

1.Cell biology  
2.Organisation  
3.Infection and response 
4.Bioenergetics 
5.Homeostasis and response 
6.Inheritance, variation and evolution 
7.Ecology

Assessment

All examinations are written and to be taken at the end of year 11. There are two exam papers in total.                                           

Examination Paper 1: What’s assessed?

Topics 1–4: Cell biology, Organisation, Infection and response and Bioenergetics.

How it’s assessed?

Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes (Totalling a 100 marks), comprising 50% of the total GCSE marks. Questions may be either multiple choice, structured, closed short answer and open response.

Examination Paper 2: What’s assessed?

Topics 5–7: Homeostasis and response, Inheritance, variation and evolution and Ecology. Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes (Totalling a 100 marks), comprising 50% of the total GCSE marks. Questions may be either multiple choice, structured, closed short answer and open response.

Practical laboratory studies.

Throughout the two-year GCSE course, students are required to complete 10 practical experiments. At least 15% of the overall written examination of GCSE Biology will assess knowledge, skills and understanding in relation to practical work.

Reading List

AuthorTitle Publisher
Fullick  AQA Science GCSE Biology Student Book Collins