Courses: GCSE Combined Science (Double Award)
Level: GCSE (Double-award)
We offer the AQA GCSE Combined Science qualification. Students will study biology, chemistry and physics across Year 10 and Year 11. Science at GCSE aims to develop a student’s knowledge and understanding of scientific theories, their ability to apply that knowledge, analyse and evaluate information in practical and everyday scenarios. It gives students good life skills, regardless of the path they follow.
Biology: Biology is the science of living organisms (including animals, plants, fungi and microorganisms), their interactions with each other and the environment.
Chemistry: Chemistry is the science of the composition, structure, properties and reactions of matter, understood in terms of atoms, atomic particles and the way they are arranged and linked together.
Physics: Physics is the science of the fundamental concepts of field, force, radiation and particle structures, which are inter-linked to form unified models of the behaviour of the material universe.
This is a two-GCSE (double-award) qualification covering the three science disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Students are awarded a grade based on their overall performance across these three disciplines. Combined science students will sit six exams at the end of the course (Two papers for each of the three disciplines and each paper will last 1 hour 15 minutes).
There will be Foundation tier and Higher tier papers, and students must sit all six exams at the same tier. Foundation tier is for students who are aiming for up to a grade 5, and Higher tier is for students who are aiming for grades 4–9.
Practical skills are developed through a series of classroom activities, including the completion of 21 required practicals. These practical skills will be assessed as part of the written examinations at the end of the course.
A level Sciences – A level Biology, A level Chemistry and A level Physics
BTEC Applied Science
At the end of Year 11, many students will finish their studies in science. These students will have gained valuable GCSEs in science, which are well respected by employers, who view good grades for GCSEs in science as an indication that a person has mastered a difficult discipline. For some careers, having GCSEs in science subjects is either very useful or, in some cases, compulsory. One such career is being a primary school teacher, where a minimum of a GCSE standard pass (Grade 4) in a science subject is a requirement.
A good proportion of students enjoy their sciences at GCSE so much that they go on to study science at A Level. This may lead them into a career straight from school, where their science qualifications are again very impressive; or it may lead them into a variety of university courses, either science or non-science based.
Examples of future careers include: agriculture, aerospace, biomedical, chemical, energy, pharmaceuticals, research and development.