Department in Focus: Science


The Science department aims to develop abilities and skills which are relevant to the study, practice and application of science and are equally relevant in everyday life.

Key Stage 3

In years 7 and 8 the students follow a broad curriculum centred around the latest National Curriculum to prepare them for GSCE studies.

In year 7 students study

  • Laboratory Safety
  • Cells
  • Animal reproduction
  • Electricity and magnetism
  • Plant reproduction
  • Energy
  • Acids and alkalis
  • Particles
  • Forces
  • Pure and impure substances
  • The Skeleton
  • Space physics

In year 8 students study

  • Digestion
  • Heating and cooling
  • Periodic table
  • Respiration
  • Light
  • Chemical reactions
  • Living world
  • Sound
  • Earth and atmosphere
  • Health
  • Materials and properties
  • Forces in motion

Key Stage 4

There are several possible pathways for GCSE Science

  1. Triple science GCSE Biology, GCSE Chemistry and GCSE Physics
  2. Science A, followed by Additional Science A in year 11
  3. Science A, followed by Additional Science A and Further Additional Science in year 11

The aims of the GCSE specification are to encourage candidates to:

  • Acquire a systematic body of scientific knowledge, and the skills needed to apply this in new and changing situations;
  • Acquire an understanding of scientific ideas, of how they develop, of the factors which may affect their power, and of their limitations;
  • Consider and evaluate critically their own data and conclusions, and those obtained from other sources, using ICT where appropriate.

Assessment for all GCSEs (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Science A and Additional Science)

  • Four units of assessment, comprising three externally assessed units and one internally assessed unit.
  • All four units have equal weightings of 25%.
  • Externally assessed units are tiered Foundation and Higher Tier.
  • Internally assessed unit is controlled assessment.
  • Content is divided into modules.
  • The courses can only be assessed as linear, with all examinations in June of year 11

To complete Science A the modules studied are:

  • Module B1: You and your genes, Module B2: Keeping healthy, Module B3: Life on Earth
  • Module C1: Air quality, Module C2: Material choices, Module C3: Chemicals in our lives - risks and benefits
  • Module P1: The Earth in the Universe, Module P2: Radiation and life, Module P3: Sustainable energy
  • Controlled assessment- Case Study and Practical Data Analysis

To complete Additional Science A the modules studied are:

  • Module B4: The processes of life Module B5: Growth and development Module B6: Brain and mind
  • Module C4: Chemical patterns Module C5: Chemicals of the natural environment Module C6: Chemical synthesis
  • Module P4: Explaining motion Module P5: Electric circuits Module P6: Radioactive materials
  • Controlled assessment - Investigation

To complete Triple Science or Further Additional Science, 3 Additional modules are studied:

  • Module B7: Further Biology
  • Module C7: Further Chemistry
  • Module P7: Further Physics
  • Controlled assessment - Investigation for each subject

These three pathways enable students to progress to study A levels in Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Key Stage 5

At KS5 students can study A level Biology, Chemistry, Physics or BTEC level 3 Applied Science


This new specification from AQA is designed to build on GCSE Additional Science or GCSE Biology. It is an exciting new course that is relevant to the classroom and the real world. AS and A Level can be taught alongside each other and there should be seamless progression between the two qualifications. The course provides numerous opportunities to use practical experiences to link theory to reality and equip students with the essential practical skills they need. The course will nurture a passion for Biology and lay the groundwork for further study in courses such as Biological Science and Medicine.

What can I expect to study?

1 Biological molecules

2 Cells

3 Organisms exchange substances with their environment

4 Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms

5 Energy transfers in and between organisms (A Level only)

6 Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments (A Level only)

7 Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems (A Level only)

8 The control of gene expression (A Level only)


A Level Chemistry goes into much more detail than GCSE. It attempts to answer the big question "what is the world made of" and it is the search for this answer that makes this subject so fascinating. From investigating how one substance can be changed drastically into another, to researching a new wonder drug to save millions of lives, the opportunities that Chemistry provides are endless.

AS Chemistry is a linear course and has two final year examinations. The areas of study are listed below. As well as these areas, Chemistry, like all sciences, is a practical subject. Throughout the course you will carry out practical activities.

Unit 1: Physical Chemistry, topics covered.

Atomic structure, Amount of substance, Bonding, Energetics, Kinetics, Chemical equilibria and Le Chatelier's principle, Oxidation, reduction and redox equations

Unit 2: Inorganic Chemistry, topics covered.

Periodicity, Group 2, the alkaline earth metals, Group 7(17), the halogens

Unit 3: Organic Chemistry, topics covered.

Introduction to Organic Chemistry, Alkanes, Halogen alkanes, Alkenes, Alcohols, Organic analysis


The Physics course is designed to encourage students to progress smoothly from previous studies in Physics to develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of the principles of Physics. Students gain hands-on practical skills and data analysis skills and appreciate how Science works and its relevance beyond the laboratory.

What can I expect to study?

1 Measurements and their errors

2 Particles and radiation

3 Waves

4 Mechanics and materials

5 Electricity

6 Further mechanics and thermal physics

7 Fields and their consequences

8 Nuclear physics


9 Astrophysics

10 Medical physics

11 Engineering physics

12 Turning points in physics

13 Electronics

BTEC level 3 Applied Science

The BTEC Level 3 Certificate offers a specialist qualification that focuses on particular aspects of employment within the appropriate vocational sector. The BTEC Level 3 Certificate is broadly equivalent to one GCE AS Level.

The Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Applied Science is a 60-credit and 360-guided-learning-hour (GLH) qualification that consists of 3 mandatory units plus 3 optional units from a choice of 13 that provide for a
combined total of 60 credits (where at least 45 credits must be at Level 3 or above).

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma extends the specialist work-related focus from the BTEC Level 3 Certificate and covers the key knowledge and practical skills required in the appropriate vocational sector.

It is broadly equivalent to one GCE A Level.

The Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Certificate in Applied Science is a 30-credit and 180-guided-learning-hour (GLH)
qualification that consists of 3 mandatory units that provide for a combined total of 30 credits.

1 Fundamentals of Science

2 Working in the Science Industry

3 Scientific Practical Techniques