What is it and why should I do it?
Biology is the study of living things from familiar, complex multi-cellular organisms that live in the many different habitats of our biosphere to single-celled micro-organisms that live in seemingly inhospitable conditions. It is a study of the dynamic relationships between living things, their interdependence, their interactions with the non-living environment, and the processes that maintain life and ensure its continuity. Biology enables students to understand that despite the diverse ways of meeting the challenges of survival, all living things have many structural and functional characteristics in common. Modern biology draws on increasingly specialised fields of bioscience such as biochemistry, neuroscience, genetics, evolutionary biology, behavioural science, and cell and molecular biology, including studies of genomics and proteomics.
Students of Biology acquire knowledge and skills of inquiry that help them to examine critically issues that arise in their own lives and in the public domain, to contribute to debate and to take part in making decisions about their own health and wellbeing and that of society. They build an understanding of the interconnectedness of all living things and their environment. The values and attributes that students develop will help them to recognise the strengths and limitations of science, respect evidence and be sensitive to differences in views and beliefs held by others. They will be able to work collaboratively and yet state their own views from an informed position.
The study of Biology prepares students for continuing studies in bioscience and entry into the workforce in a wide range of careers, including those not normally thought of as depending on bioscience. Much of our economic activity is generated through advances in bioscience research, in environmental, medical and associated biotechnologies, and in parallel sciences such as bioinformatics. Students develop knowledge of bioscience and skills of science inquiry and the values and attributes that will help them to consider issues and implications associated with the application of biological techniques and technologies
What will I do in class?
Students in Biology will engage in hands on practical work, some of which runs across terms, some of which will be completed within a session. Within this, students will be given the opportunity to create hypotheses, and challenge them by designing fair tests which gather usable data. They will then analyse and evaluate their tests.
They will also be involved in class discussions, engaging with current scientific principles and issues. Students will also be asked to involved themselves in research, whether that is gathering first hand data, or reviewing secondary sources.
There will also be times during which interactive lectures are run, where students will need to ask questions and take notes.
How much homework will I have?
Homework requirements will mainly be student directed. There is an expectation that students create and summarise notes on the content, review their biozone workbooks and complete revision tasks prior to assessments. Most of the learning will happen in a classroom environment through social construction of ideas.
How do I satisfactorily complete the unit?
Assessment for Unit 1 and 2 is varied, and consists of at least 5 SAC, test or exam based assessments throughout each semester.
Unit 1 contains 5 Assessments:
- SAC 1: Plasmolysis practical report
- SAC 2: Photosynthesis investigation
- Test 1: Cellular systems and structures
- SAC 3: Rat dissection report
- Unit 1 Exam
Unit 2 contains
- SAC 1: Mitosis practical task
- SAC 2: Genetic engineering research task
- Test 1: Genetic engineering
- Test 2: Evolution
- Unit 2 Exam
Satisfactory completion of Unit 1 and 2 will require meeting the learning outcomes via successfully completing all SACs, Tests, and Exams. Students can also demonstrate their understanding by interacting in class activities, appropriate laboratory conduct and skills, engagement with discussions, and completion of provided worksheets or questions.