Course Entry Requirements

Grade 6 in GCSE Biology or 66 in Combined Science plus grade 5 in GCSE Maths and grade 4 in English Language.


Learn about a wide variety of fundamental biological principles & concepts. You can progress to study a wealth of biological sciences related courses and clinical professions such as medicine, dentistry and veterinary sciences. You will take part in a wide range of learning experiences including practical work e.g. dissection, fieldwork and class activities.

What you will study

The fundamental biological principles and how this knowledge is used in the 21st century.

First year units include:
• Biological molecules
• Cells including structures, function and processes
• Mammalian transport, exchange and digestion
• Natural selection and impact

Second year units include:
• Nervous communication and muscles
• Homeostatic control of blood glucose and water potential
• Energy systems including photosynthesis and respiration
• Inheritance of genetics
• Modern DNA technologies – their applications in modern scientific research are emphasised


• Three examinations at the end of year two based on eight topics
• Practical tasks over the two years

Course Support

Opportunities for practical work to develop lab skills
• Regular exam based homework to test understanding
• Individual targets and feedback
• Revision tutorials
• High Achiever+ activities e.g. prep for BMAT and UCAT exams
• Regular external speakers from former students and professionals

Enrichment Activities

  • National competitions including the Biology Olympiad
  • Enrichment activities such as MedSoc, Healthcare Professionals Programme and SciSoc
  • Links with local universities
  • Nuffield Research Placements and work experience placements
  • Trips and visits e.g. Chester Zoo


4 fully equipped laboratories including for example;

  • Equipment for class practical work
  • Equipment for individual research investigations
  • Interactive whiteboards
  • Data logging equipment for real-time data capture
  • Quality light microscopes for experimental work
  • Centrifuges for organelle separation
  • Electrophoresis equipment for nucleic acid analysis
  • Computer workstations, all students also have access to a computer suite
  • Biological models


  • National competitions including the Biology Olympiad
  • Enrichment options such as MedSoc, Healthcare Professionals Programme and SciSoc
  • Links with local universities

Career Opportunities

There are many careers for which A Level Biology is either essential or very useful. These include – zoology, medicine, nursing, dentistry, physiotherapy, forensics, criminology, and veterinary science. Other careers include pharmacy, pharmacology, biochemistry, sports therapy, psychology, speech therapy, forestry, biotechnology, food science, microbiology, radiography, teaching, business, science writing or art.

Further Information

BIOLOGY course leaflet

Exam Board Course Specification

Enrichment Videos

SciSoc is a society for those students looking to study a Science related degree at Oxbridge or another prestigious university.
View the SciSoc video

If you are aspiring to have a career in Medicine, Dentistry or Veterinary Science, then take a look at our MDV Programme
View the Med, Dent, Vet Programme video






What Our Students Say

Studying at Carmel has really helped me to become a well-rounded person. My teachers are very supportive and always happy to offer help and advice when I need it. What I enjoy about Biology is the combination of practical and scientific knowledge that can be applied to theories and everyday life. I like that the Biology department provides concise booklets for each topic we study in class which provide valuable knowledge tailored to the specification.

The department also provides opportunities for students to achieve to the best of their ability by setting ‘stretch and challenge’ questions and involvement in competitions such as the Biology Olympiad. Not only does this stand out on university applications, but I’ve also found this really useful because it tests my knowledge of the course and allows me to go beyond the specification, aiding my lateral thinking skills.

When I leave college, I hope to study Medicine. Carmel has provided me with the support and confidence to aim to study such a competitive degree. Carmel’s MedDentVet Club, MedSoc, has helped me improve my personal statement and interview technique, as well as increased my knowledge of current affairs in the medical profession.

Jasmine Lee, Medicine & Surgery, Lancaster University

Biology Jasmine Lee Wade Deaconsmall