Biology is the study of living things. It is the study, therefore, of plants and animals. The courses on offer look at what living things are, their structure and how they work.
The department offers the following courses:-
S1 - S3 Science
National 3, 4, 5 Biology
Higher, Advanced Higher Biology
Pupils can use Scholar to help with their revision with courses, remember the link to Scholar is on the Home page of the website.
Pupils wishing a copy of any of the PowerPoint presetnations used in class should provide their teacher with a USB drive to enable this.
SQA Past Paper Finder http://www.sqa.org.uk/pastpapers/findpastpaper.htm
SQA Past Papers can be downloaded directly from the SQA website. The link for this is below.
National 3 Biology
National 3 Biology is made up of the following units.
Cell Biology (National 3)
The key areas of this unit are; the structure and variety of cells and their functions; the function of DNA; the risks and benefits of DNA profiling, photosynthesis; different types of microorganisms and how growth of microorganisms can be controlled.
Multicellular Organisms (National 3)
The key areas of this unit are; the structure and function of organs and organ systems and their role in sustaining life; the role of technology in monitoring health and improving quality of life; body defences against disease and role of vaccines; fertilisation and embryonic development and risks to embryo.
Life on Earth (National 3)
The key areas of this unit are; sampling and identifying living things from different habitats to compare their biodiversity and suggest reasons for their distribution; Different types of chemicals in agriculture, the alternatives and their impact on global food production.
To achieve the National 3 Biology Course, learners must pass all of the required Units. National 3 Courses are not graded.
National 4 Biology
National 4 Biology is made up of the following 4 Units;
Cell Biology (National 4)
The key areas covered in this unit are: cell division and its role in growth and repair, DNA, genes and chromosomes, therapeutic use of cells, properties of enzymes and use in industries, properties of microorganisms and use in industries, photosynthesis — limiting factors, factors affecting respiration, and controversial biological procedures.
Multicellular Organisms (National 4)
The key areas covered in this unit are: sexual and asexual reproduction and their importance for survival of species, propagating and growing plants, commercial use of plants, genetic information, growth and development of different organisms, and biological actions in response to internal and external changes to maintain stable body conditions.
Life on Earth (National 4)
The key areas covered in this unit are: how animal and plants species depend on each other, impact of population growth and natural hazards on biodiversity, nitrogen cycle, fertiliser design and environmental impact of fertilisers, adaptations for survival, and learned behaviour in response to stimuli linked to species survival.
Added Value Unit: Biology Assignment (National 4)
In this Unit, learners will draw on and extend the skills they have learned from across the other Units, and demonstrate the breadth of knowledge and skills acquired, in unfamiliar contexts.
National 4 Biology is assessed internally through the learners passing all of the unit assessments and the added value unit which is assessed through an assignment.
The National 4 course is not graded.
National 5 Biology
National 5 Biology is made up of the following units.
Cell Biology (National 5)
The key areas covered are: cell structure; transport across cell membranes; producing new cells; DNA and the production of proteins; proteins and enzymes; genetic engineering; photosynthesis and respiration.
Biology: Multicellular Organisms (National 5)
The key areas covered are: cells, tissues and organs; stem cells and meristems; control and communication; reproduction, variation and inheritance; the need for transport and effects of life-style choices on animal transport and exchange systems.
Biology: Life on Earth (National 5)
The key areas covered are: biodiversity and the distribution of life; energy in ecosystems; sampling techniques and measurement of abiotic and biotic factors; adaptation, natural selection and the evolution of species and human impact on the environment.
To gain the award of the Course, the learner must pass all of the Units as well as the Course assessment. National 5 Biology is graded.
National 5 Biology - BBC Education http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/subjects/zync87h
CfE Higher Biology
CfE Higher Biology is made up of the following units.
DNA and the Genome (Higher)
The key areas covered are: Structure of DNA; replication of DNA; control of gene expression; cellular differentiation; the structure of the genome; mutations; evolution; genomic sequencing.
This Unit explores the molecular basis of evolution and biodiversity, while the unity of life is emphasised in the study of gene expression. This approach enables the development of both analytical thinking and problem solving skills in context. An understanding of gene expression, at the cellular level, leads to the study of differentiation in organisms. In addition, the Unit covers the evolution and structure of the genome and genomics, including personal genomics.
Metabolism and Survival (Higher)
The key areas covered are: metabolic pathways and their control; cellular respiration; metabolic rate; metabolism in conformers and regulators; metabolism and adverse conditions; environmental control of metabolism; genetic control of metabolism; ethical considerations in use of microorganisms, hazards and control of risks. Analytical thinking and problem solving skills will be developed in context, through investigation of how cellular respiration is fundamental to metabolism and by examining the stages of respiration. In whole organisms, it considers adaptations for the maintenance of metabolism for survival. In addition, it examines the importance of the manipulation of metabolism in microorganisms, both in the laboratory and in industry, including ethical considerations.
Sustainability and Interdependence (Higher)
The key areas covered are: food supply, plant growth and productivity; plant and animal breeding; crop protection; animal welfare; symbiosis; social behaviour; mass extinction and biodiversity.
Analytical thinking and problem solving skills will be developed contextually within these topics. The importance of plant productivity and the manipulation of genetic diversity to maintain food security are emphasised. The Unit also covers interrelationships and dependence, through symbiosis and social behaviour. By studying biodiversity, the Unit attempts to measure, catalogue, understand and address the human impact, including mass extinction.
To gain the award of the Course, the learner must pass all of the Units as well as the Course assessment. Course assessment will provide the basis for grading attainment in the Course award.
The learners must pass an added value unit.
This added value consists of:
A question paper out of 100 marks, which requires learners to demonstrate aspects of breadth, challenge and application. Learners will apply breadth and depth of skills, knowledge and understanding from across the Course to answer questions in biology
An assignment out of 20 marks, which requires learners to demonstrate aspects of challenge and application. Learners will apply skills of scientific inquiry, using related knowledge, to carry out a meaningful and appropriately challenging task in biology and communicate findings
Revised Advanced Higher Biology
Revised Advanced Higher Biology is made up of the following units.
Cells and Proteins
This Unit focuses on the key role that proteins play in the structure and functioning of cells and organisms. In considering the proteome it builds on the understanding of the genome developed in the revised Higher Biology and Higher Human Biology Courses
Organisms and Evolution
This Unit explores the importance of parasites in evolution. It builds on the understanding of genomics, inheritance, parasitism and disease developed in the revised Higher Biology and revised Higher Human Biology Courses.
This Unit will give learners a solid grounding in both the principles and practice of investigative biology. Science is introduced as the gathering and organisation of knowledge, and particular focus is placed on the testability and refinement of knowledge through experimentation. This introduction will allow learners to relate their own experiences of scientific method within the world of science. Essential ethics for biologists, as well as an introduction to the purposes and forms of different types of scientific communication, are also covered.
To gain the award of the Course, the learner must pass all of the Units as well as the Course assessment and investigative report which is out of 25 marks.
Careers in Biology
A future in biology would allow you be part of making the world a better place for your generation and those that follow. Whether you want to save the planet, find cures for diseases, work with animals, work with plants, work with food (yum), research genetics or use biotechnology, pursuing a course in biology is for you. Biology is used everyday by many people, from the Prime Minister to a Wedding Cake maker.
Even if you don’t think your future career will require biology, you’ll use it everyday in life. A little biology knowledge will help you understand advances in food production, medicine and allow you to stay up to date with the world around you.
For more information check the website below.