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Where can I find resources to help deliver the practical skills necessary to teach AS & A Level Biology? And how much time should I spend teaching practical skills?

As a guide students should spend at least 20% of their time doing practical work individually or in small groups. Not only is practical work enjoyable but it will reinforce theory and develop 4 practical skills of planning, collection, analysis and evaluating assessed in Paper 3 and 5.

The AS & A level 9700 Biology syllabus details how the skills will be assessed on each paper.  Further guidance for developing these skills can be found in the ‘Teaching Practical Skills for Science’ booklet. There are also 12 ‘Practical Booklets’ which will help form the basis of practical work conducted in your lessons. The Scheme of Work incorporates these 12 experiments along with other opportunities for practical work. All of these resources can be found on the Biology 9700 ‘Teaching and learning’ section of the School Support Hub here. In addition, ‘Resource Plus’ provides a variety of materials to support the teaching of practical skills including experiment videos with interactive content.

Please be aware that in both Paper 3 and 5 the questions may be based on biology not included in the syllabus. Candidates are mainly assessed on their practical skills rather than their knowledge of theory. However, where appropriate candidates will be provided with additional information regarding unfamiliar equipment, materials, and techniques.

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