A Level

Awarding Body: Eduqas

Course Description

Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their physical structure, chemical processes, molecular interactions, physiological mechanisms, development and evolution.
The subject is highly-regarded and preferred by the top universities. An A Level qualification in Biology opens up a wide range of exciting career possibilities such as pharmacology, biotechnology and research scientist for example.

Grade 5 or above in GCSE Maths plus a minimum grade 6 in GCSE Biology and one other GCSE Science subject or 6’s in GCSE Double Science.

As an international student you must:

  • Demonstrate a suitable level of academic English, normally at CEFR level B1. For Tier Visa applications Portsmouth College recommends a minimum IELTS score of 5.5 overall (with no component lower than 5) to best succeed in your studies.
  • Demonstrate that you are competent to study at Level 3 in your chosen subjects during your application, including certificates of your qualifications and subject specific requirements such as evidence of an art portfolio for entry on to one of our Art courses.
  • Successfully complete a Skype interview with the College to discuss and assess your choices.

In year one, you will study the core concepts of biology, biodiversity, classification, and physiology. In the second year of the course, you will study three components: energy for life, continuity of life and requirements for life, including an optional unit on neurobiology and behaviour.

Students will develop skills to allow independent learning and problem solving – a crucial element of being successful in this pure science subject. Practical work will be emphasised and students will be supported to complete the course with a practical endorsement alongside their A level qualification. Students will learn to answer questions by applying their knowledge to an unknown biological situation.

100% examined. All exams will take place at the end of the second year.

  • Component 1: Energy for life + core concepts (33.3%)
  • Component 2: Continuity for life + core concepts ( 33.3%)
  • Component 3: Requirements for life + core concepts (33.3%)

A Biology A Level offers many opportunities for students to progress onto a range of science and non-science courses. The options of work experience available through the E6 Programme, alongside the Extended Project Qualification, allows students to develop additional skills which will be useful for university and apprenticeship applications.

This subject is well regarded by universities and employers and is one of the facilitating subjects. It is a course requirement for more courses than any other A level – particularly medicine, dentistry and veterinarian sciences, in addition to biochemistry, marine biology, bioengineering and many more non-science related subjects.

Final exams will take place in June of the second year.