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Science

Curiosity is part of human nature and it is this passion for discovery which leads the thinking in the science department. The department aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills which will enable them to question the world around them and make informed decisions. The world is changing at such a rate that it means we are unable to predict the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and every day brings new knowledge and understanding. The science curriculum is designed to reflect the need for both critical scientific thinking and adaptability of understanding.

Supported by key subject knowledge students use their developing skills and interest in science to become better students, logical thinkers, resilient problem solvers, and creative and thoughtful citizens.


Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science.

- Edwin Powell Hubble

 

The aim is to ensure that all students:

  • have a solid grounding in key principles and a firm knowledge base on which to proceed.
  • develop their scientific thinking so they leave us equipped with a logical, scientific approach to new ideas and concepts.
  • are guided through a five year curriculum during which their understanding and ability to explain the world around them matures as they do.
  • are challenged and supported at every stage of their learning, no matter their starting point.
  • can apply their knowledge to new situations, not simply recall facts and figures.
  • enjoy practical science and the associated challenges it poses.
  • understand scientific theories, why we believe them to be true and how we test these, regardless of personal beliefs.

The Science Curriculum Area includes a range of practical work and experiments. The combined experience of the staff offering specialisms in physics, chemistry, biology, biochemistry, natural science and environmental science ensures an exciting and challenging experience for all students, whether they are gifted or talented in science or find it challenging and need extra support.
 

Key Stage 3

Students follow a science route designed as a five year development towards their examinations at the end of year 11. Students are taught the following topics which cover both the national curriculum and content from the new GCSE courses.  The curriculum is challenging and students are taught content from GCSE specifications from year 7 upwards.

YEAR 7:

  • Hazards – an introduction to lab safety and the basics of acids and alkalis
  • New Life – life processes, cells, organs and fertilisation
  • Current affairs – electricity and magnetism
  • Particles – the particle model of solids, liquids and gases
  • Interdependence – plant structures, feeding relationships and how living organisms interact with one another.
  • May the force be with you – Forces and their effects

YEAR 8:

  • Reactions- the periodic table, chemical reactions
  • Bodyworks – some common organ systems in the human body
  • See Hear – Light and sound
  • Rock on – the rock cycle and materials in the natural world
  • Species at war – microbes, disease and how ecosystems function
  • Energy – Energy types and energy resources
Key Stage 4

YEAR 9:

  • Chemical reactions – chemical and physical reactions, the reactivity series, the reactions of acids
  • Variation – genes, inheritance and evolution
  • Speed – force diagrams, distance-time graphs, velocity-time graphs, forces and pressure
  • Caught in the act – Fuels and energy transfers, hydrocarbons and the greenhouse effect.

YEAR 10

Students will follow one of two routes:

Route A: (For students who did not pick Triple science or achieved less than a level 6 at the end of year 9 2016) Edexcel Combined Science course.  Students will study for two GCSEs in the Edexcel Science courses. Grades will be in the new format of 1-9.

Or

Route B: Students who have picked this option will study for three separate GCSEs in biology, chemistry and physics in the Edexcel Science courses. They will cover the content listed below in greater depth that those students studying combined science. Grades will be in the new format of 1-9.

All students will be examined at the end of year 11. There will be external exams at the end of year 10 but these will not count towards the final GCSE grade.

There is no longer a coursework component of the GCSE which contributes towards the final grade.

Depending on their route students will study all/some of the following topics during the course. Some of this will have been covered in earlier years and students are expected to draw upon knowledge from their full five years in school.

Biology Topics
  • Topic 1 - Key Biological Concepts
  • Topic 2 - Cell and control
  • Topic 3 - Genetics
  • Topic 4-  Selection Pressures
  • Topic 5 - Health and diseases     
  • Topic 6 - Plant structures and their functions
  • Topic 7 - Animal coordination, control and homeostasis
  • Topic 8 - Exchange and transport in animals
  • Topic 9 - Ecosystems and material cycles
Chemistry Topics
  1. Atomic structure and the periodic table
  2. Bonding
  3. Mass calculations
  4. States of matter and separation techniques
  5. Acids     
  6. Electrolysis 
  7. Metals 
  8. Equilibria 
  9. Quantitative analysis
  10. Groups I, VII and 0
  11. Reaction rates
  12. Enthalpy changes
  13. Earth and atmosphere
  14. Fuels and hydrocarbons
  15. Alcohols, acids and polymers
  16. Nanoparticles
  17. Qualitative analysis
physics topics

PHYSICS TOPICS

  1. Force & Motion
  2. Energy
  3. Waves
  4. More Waves
  5. Radioactivity - Theory   
  6. Radioactivity - Uses
  7. Space
  8. More Energy
  9. More Forces
  10. Electricity
  11. Static Electricity
  12. Magnetism & motors
  13. EM Induction
  14. Particle Model
  15. Forces & matter
combined science (route a)

The course will cover the content listed below.

Assessment for this route will consist of six exam papers.
 

BIOLOGY PAPER 1 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

Content overview

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in biology
  • Topic 2 – Cells and control
  • Topic 3 – Genetics
  • Topic 4 – Natural selection and genetic modification
  • Topic 5 – Health, disease and the development of medicines

BIOLOGY PAPER 2 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in biology
  • Topic 6 – Plant structures and their functions
  • Topic 7 – Animal coordination, control and homeostasis
  • Topic 8 – Exchange and transport in animals
  • Topic 9 – Ecosystems and material cycles

CHEMISTRY PAPER 1 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in chemistry
  • Topic 2 – States of matter and mixtures
  • Topic 3 – Chemical changes
  • Topic 4 – Extracting metals and equilibria

CHEMISTRY PAPER 2 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in chemistry
  • Topic 6 – Groups in the periodic table
  • Topic 7 – Rates of reaction and energy changes
  • Topic 8 – Fuels and Earth science

PHYSICS PAPER 1 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts of physics
  • Topic 2 – Motion and forces
  • Topic 3 – Conservation of energy
  • Topic 4 – Waves
  • Topic 5 – Light and the electromagnetic spectrum
  • Topic 6 – Radioactivity

PHYSICS PAPER 2 WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 10 MINUTES 16.67% OF THE QUALIFICATION, 60 MARKS

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts of physics
  • Topic 8 – Energy - Forces doing work
  • Topic 9 – Forces and their effects
  • Topic 10 – Electricity and circuits
  • Topic 12 – Magnetism and the motor effect
  • Topic 13 – Electromagnetic induction
  • Topic 14 – Particle model
  • Topic 15 – Forces and matter
individual science route b

Assessment for this route will consist of two exam papers per GCSE subject.

BIOLOGY PAPER 1 - WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 45 MINUTES 50% OF THE QUALIFICATION 100 MARKS

Content overview:

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in biology
  • Topic 2 – Cells and control
  • Topic 3 – Genetics
  • Topic 4 – Natural selection and genetic modification
  • Topic 5 – Health, disease and the development of medicines

BIOLOGY PAPER 2 - WRITTEN EXAMINATION: 1 HOUR AND 45 MINUTES 50% OF THE QUALIFICATION 100 MARKS

Content overview

  • Topic 1 – Key concepts in biology
  • Topic 6 – Plant structures and their functions
  • Topic 7 – Animal coordination, control and homeostasis
  • Topic 8 – Exchange and transport in animals
  • Topic 9 – Ecosystems and material cycles

Chemistry topics

  1. Atomic structure and the periodic table
  2. Bonding
  3. Mass calculations
  4. States of matter and separation techniques
  5. Acids    
  6. Electrolysis
  7. Metals
  8. Equilibria
  9. Quantitative analysis
  10. Groups I, VII and 0
  11. Reaction rates
  12. Enthalpy changes
  13. Earth and atmosphere
  14. Fuels and hydrocarbons
  15. Alcohols, acids and polymers
  16. Nanoparticles
  17. Qualitative analysis

Physics topics

  1. Force & Motion
  2. Energy
  3. Waves
  4. More Waves
  5. Radioactivity - Theory   
  6. Radioactivity - Uses
  7. Space
  8. More Energy
  9. More Forces
  10. Electricity
  11. Static Electricity
  12. Magnetism & motors
  13. EM Induction
  14. Particle Model
  15. Forces & matter
Year 11 Additional science students

 

Students will follow a very similar route to that in year 10 for their Core Science qualification. Students will be sitting the last ever legacy GCSE examinations of The Edexcel Science course.

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL SPECIFICATION | PDF

One way in which you can help your child is to test them regularly on the notes below.

THE COURSE CONTAINS THE FOLLOWING TOPICS:

Biology B2

  • Topic 1  The building blocks of cells
  • Topic 2  Organisms and energy
  • Topic 3  Common systems

Chemistry C2

  •  Topic 1Atomic structure and the periodic table
  • Topic 2Ionic compounds and analysis
  • Topic 3Covalent compounds and separation techniques
  • Topic 4Groups in the periodic table
  • Topic 5Chemical reactions
  • Topic 6Quantitative chemistry

Physics P2

  • Topic 1 Static and current electricity
  • Topic 2 Controlling and using electric current
  • Topic 3 Motion and forces
  • Topic 4 Momentum, energy, work and power
  • Topic 5 Nuclear fission and nuclear fusion
  • Topic 6 Advantages and disadvantages of using radioactive materials

EXTERNAL ASSESSMENT:

They are assessed both internally and externally as follows:

Internally: 25%

Controlled Assessments (1 hour) set by Edexcel, based on relevant practical activities, marked by teachers in school and externally moderated by an examiner appointed by the exam board. The best marks from three activities, one per subject, must be submitted for each student. 

Externally: 75%

Based on 3 one hour, tiered (Foundation or Higher) structured question exams sat by students in June and externally marked by the exam board.  There will be one  exam in each of; Biology (25%), Chemistry (25%) and Physics (25%).

Students will be certificated in the summer of 2017 for Additional Science.

Triple science students

Students on this route will be working towards two GCSE qualifications this year. The grade they received from the summer 2016 exams is their Biology result and has no effect on these two further qualifications.

Students will follow a very similar route to that in year 10 for their Biology qualification. Students will be sitting the last ever legacy Edexcel GCSE examinations for Chemistry and Physics.

One way in which you can help your child is to test them regularly on the notes below.

CORE CHEMISTRY MEMORISE ME NOTES | PDF

CHEMISTRY MEMORISE ME NOTES

TRIPLE CHEMISTRY MEMORISE ME NOTES

CORE PHYSICS MEMORISE ME NOTES

PHYSICS MEMORISE ME NOTES

Students will study units Chemistry 1, Chemistry 2 and Chemistry 3 in year 11 and sit three chemistry exams in the summer term 2017

Students will continue to study the Physics course (Physics 1, Physics 2 and Physics 3) which they started in year 10. They will complete the course and sit three physics exams in the summer term 2017.

 

THE CHEMISTRY COURSE CONTAINS THE FOLLOWING TOPICS:

Chemistry 1

  • Topic 1 The Earth’s sea and atmosphere
  • Topic 2 Materials from the Earth
  • Topic 3 Acids
  • Topic 4  Obtaining and using metals
  • Topic 5 Fuels

Chemistry C2

  •  Topic 1 Atomic structure and the periodic table
  • Topic 2 Ionic compounds and analysis
  • Topic 3 Covalent compounds and separation techniques
  • Topic 4 Groups in the periodic table
  • Topic 5 Chemical reactions
  • Topic 6 Quantitative chemistry

Chemistry C3

  • Topic 1 Qualitative analysis
  • Topic 2  Quantitative analysis
  • Topic 3 Electrolytic processes
  • Topic 4 Gases, equilibria and ammonia
  • Topic 5 Organic chemistry

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL CHEMISTRY SPECIFICATION HERE | PDF


THE PHYSICS COURSE CONTAINS THE FOLLOWING TOPICS:

PHYSICS 1

  • Topic 1 Visible light and the Solar System
  • Topic 2 The electromagnetic spectrum
  • Topic 3 Waves and the Universe
  • Topic 4 Waves and the Earth
  • Topic 5  Generation and transmission of electricity
  • Topic 6 Energy and the future

PHYSICS P2

  • Topic 1 Static and current electricity
  • Topic 2 Controlling and using electric current
  • Topic 3 Motion and forces
  • Topic 4 Momentum, energy, work and power
  • Topic 5 Nuclear fission and nuclear fusion
  • Topic 6 Advantages and disadvantages of using radioactive materials

PHYSICS P3

  • Topic 1 Radiation in treatment and medicine
  • Topic 2 X-rays and ECGs
  • Topic 3 Production, uses and risks of ionising radiation from radioactive sources
  • Topic 4 Motion of particles
  • Topic 5 Kinetic theory and gases

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL PHYSICS SPECIFICATION HERE | PDF

 

EXTERNAL ASSESSMENT:

They are assessed both internally and externally as follows:

Internally: 25%

Controlled Assessments set by Edexcel, based on relevant practical activities, marked by teachers in school and externally moderated by an examiner appointed by the exam board. The best marks from two activities are submitted for each student. 

Externally: 75%

Based on 3 one hour, tiered (Foundation or Higher) structured question exams per GCSE subject, sat by students in June and externally marked by the exam board. 

Students will be certificated in the summer of 2017 for GCSEs in both Chemistry and Physics.

Key stage 5

BIOLOGY A LEVEL

Students study the Edexcel Biology A specification for two years before sitting their examinations at the end of the two year course. Students will also be entered for the AS qualification after one year of study, but this will not contribute to their final A level grade. Examinations are now linear over the complete 2 year course, leading to the A level qualification. Three examinations in June of the final year will test students’ knowledge of the entire syllabus. There is no longer any practical coursework assessment but ‘practical competency’, shown during core practical sessions, will be separately reported.

Biologists study the living world. You will have the chance to learn about and understand key contemporary issues and topics such as DNA, fingerprinting, genetic engineering and some of the latest advances in medicine and biotechnology. Biology is a popular but challenging subject. You will need to be dedicated and well organised. Wide reading around the subject area will give a solid base to build  upon. The course content covers the circulatory system and health risks, genetics and health, genome biology, biodiversity and ecology, photosynthesis, the immune system, physiological adaptation and the nervous system.

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL BIOLOGY SPECIFICATION HERE | PDF

 

CHEMISTRY A LEVEL

Students will study the Edexcel Chemistry specification for two years before sitting their examinations at the end of the two year course. Students will also be entered for the AS qualification after one year of study, but this will not contribute to their final A level grade. Examinations are now linear over the complete 2 year course, leading to the A level qualification. Three examinations in June of the final year will test students’ knowledge of the entire syllabus. There is no longer any practical coursework assessment but ‘practical competency’, shown during core practical sessions, will be separately reported.

As the study of materials, their properties and how they are made, chemistry represents a discipline that impacts on all of our lives in numerous ways. It is essential for a good understanding of other science subjects such as zoology, medicine and veterinary science. Chemistry is concerned with the physical and chemical properties of molecules and their composition, structure and synthesis in the context of contemporary life. Chemistry is a challenging subject yet increasingly popular. Wide reading around the subject area will give a solid base to build upon. A feature of the specification is the value of understanding the principles of chemistry and being able to apply these in unfamiliar settings.

The course content covers inorganic, organic and physical chemistry, encompassing:

atomic structure, bonding, redox, the chemistry of group 2/7, organic chemistry, analytical techniques, energetics, kinetics, equilibria, acids/bases Examinations are now linear over the complete 2 year course, leading to the A level qualification. Three examinations in June of the final year will test students’ knowledge of the entire syllabus. There is no longer any practical coursework assessment but ‘practical competency’, shown during core practical sessions, will be separately reported.

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL CHEMISTRY SPECIFICATION HERE | PDF


PHYSICS A LEVEL

Students will study the Edexcel Physics specification for two years before sitting their examinations at the end of the two year course. Students will also be entered for the AS qualification after one year of study, but this will not contribute to their final A level grade. Examinations are now linear over the complete 2 year course, leading to the A level qualification. Three examinations in June of the final year will test students’ knowledge of the entire syllabus. There is no longer any practical coursework assessment but ‘practical competency’, shown during core practical sessions, will be separately reported.

Any physicist will tell you that physics is the subject upon which all the other sciences rely for a true understanding of the universe. It is the basis upon which areas like engineering depend. If you have a good grasp of mathematics and an aptitude for using numbers to solve problems then you will find physics to your liking. In past years enrichment activities have included a particle physics workshop at Royal Holloway University of London and a residential trip to CERN and the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva. Physics is a challenging subject yet increasingly popular. Wide reading around the subject area will give a solid base to build upon. A feature of the specification is the value of understanding and being able to apply the principles of physics to unfamiliar settings.

There is a strong mathematical content to studying physics A level: students are strongly advised to take A level mathematics with this course. The course content covers a mixture of classical and modern physics: mechanics, electrical circuits and components, fields (electric, magnetic and gravitational), materials, nuclear and particle physics, the quantum theory of light, oscillations and astrophysics. Examinations are now linear over the complete 2 year course, leading to the A level qualification. Three examinations in June of the final year will test students’ knowledge of the entire syllabus. There is no longer any practical coursework assessment but ‘practical competency’, shown during core practical sessions, will be separately reported.

YOU CAN FIND THE FULL PHYSICS SPECIFICATION HERE | PDF