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City of Peterborough Academy

Key Stage 4- Separate Sciences

GCSE Biology, Chemistry and Physics - Key Stage 4

What will students do in this subject?

Students in year 10 – 11 follow AQA GCSE Combined Science Trilogy [8464] course and are taught all three Science disciplines [Biology, Chemistry and Physics]. At the start of year 11 students who achieved grade 77 and above in the year 10 PPE are transferred onto the Triple award course and study separate GCSE Biology 8461, GCSE Chemistry 8462 and GCSE Physics 8463 which provides a gateway into advanced science study and wide range of career opportunities for the most able. 

Students will be encouraged to work scientifically and are expected to complete a number of required practical tasks during the course. Students will achieve an equivalent of three GCSEs in GCSE Biology 8461, GCSE Chemistry 8462 and GCSE Physics 8463.

Course content

A course encompassing Biology, Chemistry and Physics, designed to enable students to develop their own scientific knowledge and skills in each scientific area. Each subject provides breadth and depth into topics studied at A level sciences

Biology units 
Students will take part in laboratory and field investigations and will use these to develop an understanding of biological molecules, cells, genetic information, relationships between organisms and many other topics. 

1. Cell biology 
2. Organisation 
3. Infection and response 
4. Bioenergetics 
5. Homeostasis and response 
6. Inheritance, variation and evolution 
7. Ecology

Chemistry units 
Chemistry is integral to everything we do as it helps us find out about the world around us, developing practical skills, maths skills and knowledge that will be transferable across all sciences. 

1. Atomic structure and the periodic table 
2. Bonding, structure, and the properties of matter 
3. Quantitative chemistry 
4. Chemical changes 
5. Energy changes 
6. The rate and extent of chemical change 
7. Organic chemistry 
8. Chemical analysis

Physics units 
Studying Physics allows students find out about the world around them, develop practical skills, maths skills and knowledge that will be transferable across all sciences. 

1. Energy 
2. Electricity 
3. Particle model of matter 
4. Atomic structure 
5. Forces 
6. Waves 
7. Magnetism and Electromagnets 
8. Space (Physics only)

There are six papers: two biology, two chemistry and two physics. Each of the papers will assess knowledge and understanding from distinct topic areas.  

Multiple choice, structured, closed short answer, and open response.

Written exam
1 hour 45 minutes, Foundation and Higher Tier, 100 marks on each paper, Each paper is worth 50% of GCSE.

What might the subject lead into?

Science provides opportunities for students within STEM and there are many different fields and specialities which broadly fall into teaching, research, and practical application.  

Students study the separate sciences have opportunities to study A ­levels in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. 

Science provides opportunities into several careers such as: doctor, research scientist, pharmacist, veterinary doctor, teacher of science, engineer, forensic scientist, microbiologist, astronomer, biochemist, nurse, psychologist, nutritionist, etc.  In addition, Science has links with Physical Education this provides opportunities for careers in physiotherapy, sports science, sports coaching, and sports rehabilitation.