GCSE Science

As a core subject all students take Science at GCSE. Students can choose to take either the double award, combing all three disciplines into a course which awards 2 GCSE grades in Core and Additional Science or separate Biology, Chemistry and Physics GCSEs.

Double Award
Most students will follow the AQA Science A course leading to two GCSE’s in Science. The first GCSE (Core Science) is taught and assessed in Year 10 and the second, (Additional Science) is taught and assessed in Year 11. The course is taught over 10 periods per fortnight.

Separate Sciences
Students will study science over fifteen periods a fortnight with five lessons in each of the subject areas, Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The course is taught and assessed through modules in each discrete subject and leads to 3 GCSE’s in Science.

The GCSE syllabus requires students to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the chemical properties of elements and compounds in terms of structure and bonding, including metallic, ionic and covalent bonds and forces between molecules
  • the chemical properties of elements related to their atomic structure and their position in the periodic table
  • chemical analysis using detection and separation techniques
  • the relationship between work and energy, and changes in gravitational potential energy and kinetic energy
  • electrical circuits, including the relationships between power, current and voltage and resistance, current and voltage
  • Newton’s laws of motion and their theoretical and practical uses
  • calculating changes in the velocity and acceleration of organisations acted on by forces, including momentum
  • radioactivity, sources of background radiation and the effects of ionising radiations
  • radioactive decay, half-life, fission and fusion
  • the structure of cells, including plant, animal and microbial cells
  • fieldwork techniques to explore the relationships between communities of organisms and their environments
  • the structure and function of DNA and its role in protein synthesis
  • photosynthesis and respiration
  • how organisms have changed through time.