Biology

Staff

Miss B Jessiman Curricular Leader
Mr S Bacon
Miss M Brown
Dr C Ballany

Biology concerns itself with the study of living organisms - humans, plants and animals and can only be taken as a separate subject from S3 onwards.     

S3 Biology Course

This course provides a link between Science in S1 and S2 and the National Qualifications in S4. Pupils will be exposed to a wide variety of learning experiences. The units they will study are:-

Global Biology – Looking at the impact humans have on our world and the issues we are creating, gaining an insight into the ways we can slow down the impact on the environment. Looking at our local environment and studying indicators of pollution.Adaptation and Behaviour – What are the adaptations organisms have? Why are they of use? Learning in animals. What is homeostasis? How do we regulate activities on our body?Cell Biology – This provides a broad introduction to the Cell Biology studied in National 4 and 5. It starts with looking at cell structures in plants, animals, fungi and bacteria. The study of the processes of respiration and photosynthesis. Using practical activities to illustrate the ways we can measure these processes.

Throughout our units, pupils will be exposed to a range of activities that will allow them to develop their Scientific skills. Opportunities exist for the pupils to further develop generic skills such as creating a presentation, summarising information (literacy), using data to understand the Science behind something (numeracy).

Each unit has a range of homework activities and pupils are expected to complete these. They will be assessed regularly using both summative (end of unit) and formative (ongoing, within learning experiences) techniques.

Relevant information for pupils and parents will be posted on the website in the Resources section below.

National 4 and 5 Biology Courses

Pupils will be studying either National 4 or National 5 Biology. Some pupils may study National 3 Biology.

Please note that the unit titles are the same for National 3,4 and 5 Biology. However, the content and complexity of the topics differs.

The units studied are:-

  • Cell Biology
  • Multicellular Organisms
  • Life on Earth

Please study the learning outcomes for each unit (which are on this website) to gain an understanding of the course content at each level.

Each course gives a balanced insight into various aspects of Biology and as well as developing subject knowledge, giving the pupils a chance to develop their skills in Science and more generally.

As with all Biology courses, homework is given regularly and this may be a formal written exercise or a research type task. These exercises will help develop knowledge and skills and prepare students for the examination (in National 5).

Assessment will be conducted regularly, through checktests and end of unit assessments, but parents should be aware that in National 4 and 5 there are larger assessments that need to be completed for students to pass the course. In National 4 this is an Added Value Unit and in National 5 as Assignment.

The Added Value unit comprises a research task which students need to present/communicate their findings. They will keep a journal as they complete parts of this assessment.

The Assignment at National 5 counts towards 20% of the pupils’ mark for the course. This is therefore, a very important assessment. Guidance and advice will be given every step of the way, but pupils are asked to engage with the work and keep up with any deadlines issued.

Although National 4 Biology does not have an exam, it is still a very useful course to study. Not only does it allow students to gain a wide understanding of contemporary Biology, it develops an array of Scientific skills which give students a bank of ‘tools’ to use in later life. Should students pass National 4 Biology, they could consider studying National 5 Biology in senior school.

National 5 students are eligible to study Higher Biology in S5 or S6. This will be conditional on the pass they have received at National 5 Biology.

Higher Human Biology Course

The Higher Human Biology course consists of 4 units. The units studied are:-

  • Human Cells
  • Physiology in Health
  • Neurobiology and Communication
  • Immunology and Public Health

The course gives a balanced insight into various aspects of Human Biology and as well as developing subject knowledge, giving the pupils a chance to develop their skills in Biology, Science and more generally.

As with all Biology courses, homework is given regularly and this may be a formal written exercise, essay practice or a research type task. These exercises will help develop knowledge and skills and prepare students for the examination.

Assessment will be conducted regularly, through checktests and end of unit assessments, but parents should be aware that in Higher there are larger assessments that need to be completed for students to pass the course. As in National 5 there is an Assignment which counts towards 16% of the pupils’ mark for the course. This is therefore, a very important assessment. Guidance and advice will be given throughout, but pupils are expected to engage with the work and keep up with any deadlines issued.

Higher students are eligible to study Advanced Higher Biology in S6. This will be conditional on the pass they have received in Higher Human Biology.

Advanced Higher Biology Course

The Advanced Higher Biology course consists of 3 units. The units studied are:-

  • Cells and Proteins
  • Organisms and Evolution
  • Investigative Biology

The course gives a balanced insight into various aspects of Biology and as well as developing subject knowledge, giving the pupils a chance to develop their skills in preparation for futher study at college/university.

As with all Biology courses, homework is given regularly and this may be a formal written exercise, essay practice or tutorial research. These exercises will help develop knowledge and skills and prepare students for the examination as well as further study.

Assessment will be conducted regularly, through checktests and end of unit assessments, but parents should be aware that in Advanced Higher there are larger assessments that need to be completed for students to pass the course. There is also a research/experimental project that students complete which counts for 25% of the pupils final grade. This is therefore, a very important assessment. Mentoring will be given throughout, but pupils are expected to take responsibility for completion of all tasks set throughout the year and meet deadlines issued.

Edmodo
Timelines
Resources
Snow Closure Homework