Nature of the Subject
Science should stimulate pupil’s curiosity about events in the world around them. They should be given opportunities to use their scientific knowledge and understanding to turn their ideas into a form that can be investigated. Through science they should learn to question and discuss science-based issues that may affect their own lives, the direction of society and the future of the world.
The four key areas of the science programme of study for Key Stage 2 and 3 are:
- Scientific enquiry (SC1)
- Life processes and living things (SC2)
- Materials and their properties (SC3)
- Physical processes (SC4)
Teaching ensures that different types of enquiry is taught through contexts taken from SC2-SC4. Practical activities play a major part throughout each key area.
Key Stage 4
OCR’s Entry Level Certificate in Science is a course designed to provide learners with realistic targets, encouraging them to develop scientific skills. This enables more able learners to progress to GCSE (91) science. It provides flexibility to link between the GCSE (9-1) at either combined science and separate science qualifications.
The summer term 2018 was the first year pupils in year 11 sat the new GCSE (9 –1) in Biology A (Gateway Science). This is a linear qualification with 100% external qualification. This meant that for the first time, there was no coursework. However, teaching of practical skills is integrated with the theoretical topics and they are assessed through the written papers. There are two examinations both worth 90 marks each; each of these exams are one hour and forty five minutes long.
Pupils need to have been taught, and to have acquired competency in, the appropriate areas of mathematics relevant to the subject, and this content is assessed within the lifetime of the specification. Questions and tasks used to target mathematical skills are at a level of demand that is appropriate to the GCSE 9-1 Biology.