A Level Biology


The aims of the course are to encourage you, the candidate, to develop:

  • An enthusiasm for Biology
  • Practical skills alongside understanding of concepts and principles
  • An appropriate and relevant foundation of knowledge and skills for the study of Biology in Higher Education.

Are you considering a career in Chemistry, Biochemistry, pharmacology, pharmacy, medicine, dentistry or veterinary medicine or veterinary Science? If the answer is yes then you should be considering studying Biology.


This course has been designed to inspire students, nurture a passion for Biology and lay the groundwork for further study in courses like biological sciences and medicine.

A Level Biology lasts two years, with exams at the end of the second year. The table below shows the topics you will study in each year.

1. Biological Molecules 5. Energy Transfers in and between organisms
2. Cells 6. Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external enviroments
3. Organisms exchange substances with their environment 7. Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
4. Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms 8. The control of gene expression


Whilst there is no coursework, practical work is assessed through the examinations at the end of the year. There are 12 required practicals to be completed in the AS Level and 12 required practicals to be completed for the full A Level.
These practicals will give you the skills and confidence needed to investigate the way living things behave and work. It will also ensure that if you choose to study a Biology-based subject at university, you’ll have the practical skills needed to carry out successful experiments in your degree.
There are three exams at the end of the two years for A Level, all of which are two hours long. At least 15% of the marks for A-level Biology are based on what you learned in your practicals.


As a subject on its own an A Level in Biology shows that you have a high level of scientific skill and understanding. Taken with other sciences, Biology A Level opens up many careers including Pharmaceutical industries; Pharmacy; Biochemistry; Medicine and related medical careers; Laboratory Technician; Environmental scientist.


The minimum entry requirements for Level 3 study apply.

In addition:
All students must have Grade 6+ in Maths owing to the considerable mathematical content of the new A Levels. 

It is strongly recommended also that students have attained Grade 7 or better in GCSE science subjects.

The minimum entry requirements for Double Award Students are Grade 6 and 7 in Science. The minimum entry requirements for Triple Award Students are Grade 6 in Biology plus Grade 6 in one other science and performance in the exam components may be taken into account, given the 100% examined nature of the A Level.