A-Level Subjects



A-Level Board/code

OCR / Biology A H420

What do we cover in the course?

Key syllabus elements

The course is divided into six teaching modules and each module is further divided into key topics.

The first four modules comprise the AS Level in Biology and learners studying the A level continue with the content of modules 5 and 6.

The internally assessed Practical Endorsement skills also form part of the full A level.

The current outline of the specification is:

Module 1 – Development of practical skills in biology

1.1 Practical skills assessed in a written examination

1.2 Practical skills assessed in the practical endorsement

Module 2 – Foundations in biology

2.1.1 Cell structure

2.1.2 Biological molecules

2.1.3 Nucleotides and nucleic acids

2.1.4 Enzymes

2.1.5 Biological membranes

2.1.6 Cell division, cell diversity and cellular organisation

Module 3 – Exchange and transport

3.1.1 Exchange surfaces

3.1.2 Transport in animals

3.1.3 Transport in plants

Module 4 – Biodiversity, evolution and disease

4.1.1 Communicable diseases, disease prevention and the immune system

4.2.1 Biodiversity

4.2.2 Classification and evolution 

Module 5 – Communication, homeostasis and energy

5.1.1 Communication and homeostasis

5.1.2 Excretion as an example of homeostatic control

5.1.3 Neuronal communication

5.1.4 Hormonal communication

5.1.5 Plant and animal responses

5.2.1 Photosynthesis

5.2.2 Respiration

Module 6 – Genetics, evolution and ecosystems

6.1.1 Cellular control

6.1.2 Patterns of inheritance

6.1.3 Manipulating genomes

6.2.1 Cloning and biotechnology

6.3.1 Ecosystems

6.3.2 Populations and sustainability

How is it assessed?

Key assessment elements

A level assessment

A level students must complete all components 01, 02, 03 and 04

  • 01, 02 and 03 are written papers
  • 04 is a non-exam internal assessment of practical competency

01 Biological processes:

37% of total A level marks

2 hour 15 minutes written paper

100 marks

02 Biological diversity:

37% of total A level marks

2 hour 15 minutes written paper

100 marks

03 Unified biology:

26% of total A level marks

1 hour 30 minutes written paper

70 marks

04 Practical endorsement in biology

Practical activities are embedded within the course. These are teacher-assessed and this contributes to achieving the Practical Endorsement on a pass or fail basis

All components are synoptic.

AS level assessment

A level students must complete components 01 and 02

  • 01 and 02 are written papers
  • Both components assess content from modules 1-4

01 Breadth in biology:

50% of total AS level marks

1 hour 30 minutes written paper

70 marks

02 Depth in biology:

50% of total AS level marks

1 hour 30 minutes written paper

70 marks

What entry requirements are there to study this course?

Students should have at least a B grade at GCSE Double Science or Biology and Chemistry.

What is the course useful for?

The aims of this course are to encourage students to:

  • develop their interest in and enthusiasm for biology, including developing an interest in further study and careers in biology;
  • appreciate how society makes decisions about scientific issues and how the sciences contribute to the success of the economy and society;
  • develop and demonstrate a deeper appreciation of the skills, knowledge and understanding of the scientific method;
  • develop essential knowledge and understanding of different areas of biology and how they relate to each other.

Our Students

Barbara Bielecka (A*, A*, A), Class of 2017

“I would like to thank everyone at CTC for their help, support and encouragement during my time there. Today I received two A*s and one A, and I am extremely thrilled and proud of this result. The support that all of my tutors gave me was vital to my success and I would like to thank them all for motivating me to be the best that I could be. I will never forget my time at CTC. I wish you and the college all the best! I hope to come in soon and visit you once more. Thank you once again!” Barbara achieved 2 A* and 1 A grade in Government and Politics, History and Mathematics and will be continuing her studies reading History at LSE
Barbara Bielecka
Class of 2017

Nhi Kieu (A, B, B), Class of 2017

“I am proud to report that I am going to be a fresher at Nottingham University this September! Thank you so much for all your teaching and support for the past two years. Had it not been for your help, I would never have achieved the grades I need in Economics, something I never thought I would be able to reach. Again, please accept my immense gratitude for you and the college.”
Nhi Kieu
Class of 2017

Mr. David O'Dwyer (Head of Government and Politics)

“There is a very positive and supportive ethos in the college which supports academic learning, enrichment and development. Tutors work with a great deal of professional autonomy and the students are hardworking, mature and respectful. There is a fascinating mix amongst the cohort of home-based and international students, and the relations between staff and students are harmonious.”
Mr. David O'Dwyer
Head of Government and Politics

Economics Tutor

“The opportunity to engage with such a diverse international cohort of students has been a truly wonderful experience. I’ve loved working with a small group of motivated and friendly students that are the hallmark of CTC London and celebrating the students’ success as they proceed onwards on their academic journeys.”
Economics Tutor

Mrs. Suthantirakumar

“Students at CTC London are so dedicated to succeed and are a pleasure to teach because of this. The teaching staff here are wonderful and really connect with the students enabling them to truly reach their potential.”
Mrs. Suthantirakumar

Mathematics Tutor

“CTC is an amazing place to work and has given me the opportunity to develop both personally and professionally. The small class sizes and the friendly atmosphere really promote an excellent environment for me to pass my knowledge on and truly get the full potential from each of our students!”
Mathematics Tutor

Mr Barry Morgan (Art & Design)

“The benefit of small classes cannot be overstated, it allows students to have lots of contact time with their tutors, especially in my subject where every student is following their own personal pathway, allowing them to be thoroughly stretched and achieve their full potential”
Mr Barry Morgan
Art & Design

History Tutor

“Cambridge Tutors College is an excellent institution where students can really progress their education to the next level. Teaching in classes of around six students really helps us develop these young students in on an individual level. I only wish I found CTC London 30 years ago!”
History Tutor

Chulin Meng (Lucy)

One thing I appreciated was CTC’s unique, friendly learning atmosphere, I was surrounded by a society where everyone is passionate for studying and eager to learn new things. I found the experience truly enjoyable, and studying there was definitely one of the best experiences in my life, I am grateful for what all my tutors did. I would recommend Cambridge Tutors College to people who looking for a place where dreams would come true.
Chulin Meng (Lucy)

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