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Biology A Level

Subject: Science

At Paddington, our science curriculum is designed to enable students to make sense of the changing world around them. We develop students’ scientific understanding so they can be scientifically informed and, if they wish, pursue careers in science, or in careers that require some scientific understanding. To be scientifically informed requires a broad knowledge of scientific ideas, an appreciation of how experimentation and observation develop this knowledge, and an ability to think rationally and analytically when applying this knowledge to new contexts.

Why is Science important?

  • Science enables students to analyse the world around them as individuals.
  • Science is interesting, stimulating, life relevant, useful, enjoyable, and empowering for people to receive a science education.  
  • Provides problem solving and confidence, with challenging concepts growing in breadth of content and skills.
  • Science is achievable for all to understand complex theories.

What will students learn?

In A level Science, many topics rely on the knowledge developed at GCSE. Most new units are taught at year 13 – which bridge the gap between A level and university level knowledge and skills. In Science, we run Biology, Chemistry and Physics A level and BTEC Applied Science.

In KS5 students will study

Year 12
  • Cell structure
  • Nucleotides and nucleic acids
  • Enzymes
  • Biological Membranes
  • Cell Division
  • Exchange and Transport
  • Transport in animals
  • Transport in plants
  • Disease
  • Biodiversity
  • Classification

Year 13
  • Communication and homeostasis
  • Excretion
  • Photosynthesis
  • Respiration
  • Cellular control
  • Patterns of inheritance
  • Evolution
  • Manipulating genomes
  • Cloning and Biotechnology
  • Populations and sustainability
  • Ecosystems

How will students receive feedback?

At Paddington, all students will receive regular feedback from formative assessment tasks. Within the curriculum, specific tasks are allocated for feedback. This ensures all students gain regular feedback. Teachers will mark student work and provide targeted feedback that enables students to improve their work and make progress. To support student understanding, teachers plan high-quality re-teach time to prepare students for their feedback. Across each term, students will receive feedback from multiple tasks.

What examinations / assessments do students have at the end of KS5?

Exam board: OCR

Involves three papers, each two hours' long

What resources can be used to support learning?

  • Students in KS5 have a carefully selected textbooks for both units that covers the content of the course and provides a set of exam questions.
  • Knowledge organisers are used to develop students’ knowledge of core knowledge in each cycle. Students can use this to revise key information through self-quizzing.
  • Seneca learning is used to help students learn and memorise key context. Teachers set Seneca tasks weekly in addition to homework.


Course Overview


Course Summary


Option Video



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