Exam Board - AQA


What is Biology A level and why study it?

Biologists are scientists who study the natural world and all the living things in it. They are intrigued by everything from the largest mammals down to our very own microscopic DNA. They try to understand how organisms work, including us humans, how we evolved and the things that can make us sick and improve our health.


Biologists use this knowledge to do things like try to stop the spread of disease, track down natural resources, improve public health, enhance animal care and conservation and work out the true impact of current challenges like pollution. As with the other sciences, Biology helps you to develop research, problem solving, organisation and analytical skills. When studying will work in groups in practical learning, which will enable you to build your teamwork and communication skills too.


Biology is a key subject for lots of STEM careers, particularly in healthcare, medicine and jobs involving plants or animals. The list is extensive and includes: nursing, dentistry, forensic science, psychology, physiotherapy, botany, environmental science, zoology, geology, oceanography, pharmaceuticals, energy, teaching, science writing, genetics and research.


As part of the AQA course, A-level students will study topics including:

  • Biological molecules
  • Cells & exchange mechanisms
  • Genetic inheritance & variation
  • Homeostasis
  • Bioenergetics
  • Populations, ecosystems and evolution.


Where next?

You’ll specifically need Biology for courses in Biology, Biomedical Sciences, Dentistry, Dietetics (studies in food and nutrition), Medicine, Physiotherapy, Optometry (examining the health of eyes), and Veterinary Science.


Biology is usually required or recommended for degrees in: Biochemistry, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Geology, Environmental Science, Materials Science, Nursing & Midwifery, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Sports Science, Psychology, and Speech Therapy.


It is also useful for: Anthropology, Civil Engineering, Geography, and Teaching.


You may need A-level in Biology to take on a higher apprenticeship in healthcare or biological sciences, e.g. researching diseases or biochemistry.


What are the entrance requirements?

Grade 6 in GCSE Biology. Combined Science Grade 7-6.


Grade 6 in GCSE English language, Grade 5 in GCSE Maths.


Who do I need to see for more information?

Dr R Mounsey, Head of Science