Key Stage 4
Combined Science – two GCSEs
Or Triple Science – three separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics
Examination and Coursework Details
Each GCSE will have a terminal examination worth 100% of the overall mark.
All students will study for a minimum of two science GCSEs (Combined Science covers all three Science subjects -Biology, Chemistry and Physics and is worth two GCSEs). In all three subjects the specifications place an emphasis on ‘working scientifically’, teaching science through contemporary issues and communication of scientific ideas. ‘Working scientifically’ involves students looking at how scientific developments progress, the need to use data to support or disprove ideas and why data may not be reliable. The aim is to give the students the ability to analyse complex problems and to decide for themselves what solutions are appropriate using the available data.
The Biology course offers pupils the opportunity to examine how the body responds to the environment, keeping healthy, drugs and their implications, the body’s responses to infectious disease, factors affecting a species distribution and genetic inheritance, endangered species and how humans affect the environment, the effect of enzymes, micro-organisms and internal body systems and control.
The Chemistry course allows pupils to understand atomic structure, structure and bonding, calculations, chemical reactions, electrolysis, energy in reactions, rates of reaction, carbon compounds, the atmosphere and the use of resources.
The Physics course allows pupils to investigate thermal changes, efficiency of energy transfer and loss, electrical devices and circuits, generation of electricity using alternative sources, radiation and its uses and dangers, origins of the universe, how objects speed up or slow down, static electricity, current electricity, turning effects, mirrors and lenses as well as transformers.
Students will develop their mathematical skills in practical situations. They will have the opportunity to discuss scientific ideas and controversies and present information using a range of technologies.
Sixth Form and Career Opportunities
The course provides a firm foundation for students who intend to study an A-level science. It develops critical thinking as well as problem solving skills allowing pupils to make informed evaluations of current scientific developments. Providing for jobs in health care, pharmaceuticals and bio-chemistry sectors as well as bio-medical research, engineering and construction.