Our Subject


An introduction to Biology
A Level Biology FAQs

Studying Biology gives you the chance to learn about what keeps us alive – and the importance of other living beings and the environment around us. At Bilborough College, in practical and theoretical lessons taking place in our four specially equipped biology laboratories, our experienced Biology teachers will help develop your scientific awareness and understanding. The course is designed to build on the concepts you met at GCSE in an exciting and interesting way. You’ll study many aspects of living organisms, including biological molecules, cells, physiology, genetics and the environment. You will look at how some of the current biological concepts were developed, and the contribution biologists have made to society.

To study Biology at Bilborough College you will need to have a 66 in Double Science or a 6 in Biology if you have studied Triple Science. In addition, you will need a 6 in either English Language or Maths and at least a 5 in the other subject.

Our links with HE

Bilborough Sixth Form College’s Biology department has strong links with the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University via their student outreach programmes. At the end of Year 12 you have the opportunity to apply for a Nuffield Research Bursary, which could enable you to gain research experience in a field that interests you. For past students this has included investigating reptile genes, exploring foetal MRI scanning and studying local ecosystems as part of a nationwide project.

Biology is interesting in its own right, stimulating concern and respect for all life. Studying it can help you develop a wide range of key skills, as well as increasing your understanding of scientific methods and principles. A Biology qualification can lead to a variety of degree paths, such as Sports Science, Medicine, Environmental Science, Physiotherapy and Biomedical Sciences. And even if you decide not to continue with Biology at a higher level, you will learn valuable skills that you can apply to almost any degree or career choice.

Course Structure

We follow the AQA Biology specification. Over the two years you will study 8 topics, 4 per year,  and also complete a practical component.

In Year 12 you will study a wide variety of topics designed to build on and extend your understanding from GCSE. You will learn to apply your knowledge through the study of biological molecules, cells, immunity, physiology, DNA, protein synthesis and diversity.

In Year 13 you practice a wide variety of skills that will be useful at university or in work while studying ecology, further physiology including the nervous system, muscles and homeostasis, aspects of genetics and selection and in the final unit you get to look at some of the latest advances in genetic engineering, epigenetics and gene technology for use in medicine.

Throughout the 2 years you will carry out activities to give you the skills and confidence to go onto further study as a competent practical biologist. These include using microscopes, dissection, microbiology, ecological techniques and investigating plant and animal behaviour. At the end of the 2 years you will sit 3 exams, 15% of which will be based on what you learned in your practicals.


As a Bilborough Biology student, a variety of opportunities are available to you during the course. These include the Nuffield Research Programme for Year 12 students as detailed above and the Biology Olympiad Competition for Year 13 students, in which our past students have excelled – some achieving the prestigious Gold award. We are delighted to welcome in guest speakers from local universities, and we also arrange trips during your time at the college to further pique your interest in what is already a fascinating subject.

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