BIOLOGY (A Level)

“In biology, nothing is clear, everything is too complicated, everything is a mess, and just when you think you understand something, you peel off a layer and find deeper complications beneath. Nature is anything but simple.” ― Richard Preston

Our Biology Department would agree with the above but seek to use excellent teaching to help students wonder at and understand the living world.

A Level lessons take place in specialist laboratories, which are designed for group discussions and investigation in small, dedicated classes. All our laboratories are excellently resourced with modern, innovative equipment such as a gel-electrophoresis machine. We are fortunate to have constant access to our beautiful school grounds, including a well-maintained pond and newly refurbished greenhouse. These allow students to gain practical insights into biological processes

We teach the EdExcel Biology B syllabus, which dovetails very well with the EdExcel IGCSE syllabus that is followed by our younger students. The course provides a balance of diversity and challenge - it is a concept-based course, which combines the teaching of traditional elements with more modern biological ideas. In order to develop a deeper understanding of the environment and our place in it students are taken on a three-day field trip where they study a variety of environments including a rocky shore and woodlands. This residential stay is greatly enjoyed by all, and their all-round Biology education is significantly enriched.

The importance of translating theory into real-life application is vital at this stage in Biological education, and to support this aim, a great focus in placed on guest speakers such as those organised by Gene Park Cardiff. The annual visit by the Explorer Dome which enables students to experience the complexities of the cell from a unique angle. Our students are also encouraged to broaden their knowledge by reading articles from The Biological Review, BioFact sheets and the website The Conversation.  Their wider biological knowledge is further enhanced by the provision of the school MedSoc, where girls interested in moving into the fields of Medicine and Veterinary Science can learn more about their intended careers, as well as a number of speakers who feature in the Science Society’s calendar of events.

Each year we are proud to see students head off to study a range of biology-related courses at top universities across the UK, including Medicine, Veterinary Science, Biological Sciences, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Biomedicine, Dentistry, Biochemistry  and Forensic Science.

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