GCSE Biology


  • Adults


What will I get from this course?

This GCSE course is a one year intensive course for Adults, who wish to pursue a teacher training course; tutors and trainers who may be working within a Further Education (FE) college, Adult and Community Learning Centre or Learning Provider, who require a GCSE for Further Education or for Career development.

Course content

The course is an intensive course, presented in five sections: How Science Works, the three sections of substantive content, Biology 1, Biology 2, Biology 3 and the Controlled Assessment (Unit 4).

Students will study what makes a balance diet, defence against disease, the nervous and endocrine systems, cardiovascular system, homeostasis, ecology, genetics, reproduction and evolution.

The content How Science Works is integrated and delivered, not only through the Controlled Assessment, but also through the context of the content of Biology 1, Biology 2 and Biology 3. The organisation of each sub-section of the substantive content is designed to facilitate this approach, as well as allow students the opportunity to carry out practical work.

What have students who have taken this course in the past progressed to?

GCSE Biology is a requirement for many careers, including Primary Teaching, Science degrees and the Health Professions. With a good GCSE grade there are a wide range of career options.

How will I learn?

Through classroom based activities, homework and regular assessment leading to final, external exams. In addition to one unaided and one aided observational task.

How will I be assessed?

Students will be assessed through an internal Controlled Assessment, which is worth 25% of the total marks and consists of a minimum of one practical investigation based on topics in the specification.

Students will also be entered for the June GCSE exams, where they will sit for three separate papers for each unit, B1, B2 and B3. Each paper is worth 25% of the total marks.

Equipment and other costs

You will need stationary, a calculator and AQA GCSE Biology text book.

For further information and to apply

If you need help before choosing your course, please contact our Information Centre or come along to one of our Open Days.

* Fee information

Fees shown are set against the current year (August 2015 to July 2016) and are subject to change when Government funding changes are announced.

All our full time further education courses (Entry to Level 3) are free if you are 16-18 years old and meet UK residency requirements. Depending on your circumstances, you may also be eligible for financial support to help with other costs associated with your course such as free school meals and travel.

If you are aged 19 or over you may be required to pay fees depending on your residency status and circumstances.

If you are enrolling onto a Level 3 or 4 course and are over 24 years of age, 24+ Advanced Learning Loans are available to help you.


What qualification do I get on completing this course?


Where have students gone to after completing this course?

BTEC Level 3 Diploma

Is there additional work required by the student?

Due to the volume of scientific principles covered, as well as their applications, students should be prepared to allow a minimum of 3 hours per week of individual study outside of lessons.

What are the expected employment areas with this course?


Entry Requirements

What qualifications or skills do I need to show I have before I can enrol?

·       If you have taken a GCSE Science before, we would expect you to have a grade D

·       Grade C in either GCSE English or GCSE Maths

·       If you have not taken GCSE Science before, or it is a long time since you have studied, you will be ask to take a literacy  and numeracy assessment

Expected prior knowledge

At least Grade D in GCSE Science or Biology and at least level 1 in both Maths and English


English level  

Level 1


Mathematics level

Level 1


Financial Support for 19+ Year-olds

Are you aged 19 or over? Are the costs associated with study (e.g. travel, buying additional books or equipment) preventing you from studying? The College has a limited Learner Support Fund (LSF) and 24+ Advanced Learning Loan Bursary Fund (24+ALL BF) to help with these costs.

The funds are small. You cannot presume you will get financial support even if you meet the eligibility criteria. Eligibility for help towards course associated costs are based on your personal circumstances. In addition to demonstrating that you are on a low income, you must also meet the College’s general eligibility.

General Eligibility Criteria

Learner Support Fund:

  • Aged 19 or over
  • Considered to be a home student
  • Fully enrolled on a course funded by the Skills Funding Agency

24+ Advance Learning Loan Bursary Fund:

  • Aged 24 or over
  • Fully enrolled on a programme of study and in receipt of a 24+ Adult Learning Loan

Financial eligibility

You need to have evidence that you fall into one of the following groups:

  • on a low income
  • a dependent of someone who is on a low income or in receipt of a means tested benefit e.g. Income Support / Jobseekers Allowance, Employment Support Allowance, housing benefit etc.

The evidence you will be required to produce:

  • a current JSA/UC/ Income Support/Pension Credit letter, a Tax Credit Award notice showing income for tax year 2014-15 or recent correspondence from the DWP/Housing Benefit office which specifies the benefit being received.
  • evidence of income may be a 2014-15 P60/Tax Return, recent pay-slips showing income evidence from previous two months from which the income can be calculated or a signed letter from the employer(s) stating the salary paid
  • proof of rent or mortgage in order for your disposable income to be assessed


Payments contribute to the costs associated with study including travel. They do not meet all the costs. If you live within walking distance of college or have a Freedom pass you cannot apply for help with travel. For students who have to travel significant distances, a payment may be made towards the transport costs, for the days you are in College. You may also use the money to buy books or other learning resources.

All payments are based on you having a minimum of 85% attendance each month.

Payments are paid into your bank accounts.

You MUST inform the DWP of any payments you receive.

Contact studentadvice@cwc.ac.uk for more information.