Key Stage 3

Science is a diverse, exciting field of study and is a core subject for Key Stage 3. It helps pupils to explore the world around them and understand so many things that have such relevance to daily life. Pupils must, therefore, have the best possible support for learning science at school and strengthening standards in the early years of their secondary education.

In Key Stage 3 the department follows the syllabus published by AQA. This has been designed by the exam board to offer the grounding necessary for a seamless transition to KS4.

The teaching and learning of Key Stage 3 science involves such topics as:

  • Organisms
  • Genes
  • Ecosystems
  • Matter
  • Reactions
  • Earth
  • Waves
  • Forces
  • Electromagnets
  • Energy

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 Students study on one of three paths:

  • BTEC Science
  • AQA Science A Dual award, gaining a GCSE in Core Science and a GCSE Additional Science qualification
  • AQA Separate Sciences, gaining 3 GCSE qualifications in Physics, Chemistry and Biology

BTEC Science

BTEC Science is a coursework based qualification, where students study an array of science topics in an applied context which involve physics, chemistry and biology. We currently offer BTEC first certificate and the BTEC first diploma.

Students who pursue dual award science study separate units in Biology, Chemistry and Physics and then gain one GCSE in core science, and a second GCSE in Additional Science.

Triple award students begin their study in Year 9 and complete three exams in each subject over three years to qualify them for GCSE qualifications in Physics, Chemistry and Biology.

On both GCSE routes students will study exciting and diverse topics such as Enzymes, Cells and Genetics in Biology, and Rates of reaction, atomic theory and nanotechnology in Chemistry. 

GCSE Physics

In GCSE Physics students study such diverse topics as Energy, Electricity, Particle Model of matter, Atomic Structure, Forces, Waves, Electromagnetism and Space. By successfully completing this course you will be awarded a GCSE at grades 9 to 1.

GCSE Biology

GCSE Biology starts for Trinity Students in Year 9.  All students follow a similar course early on regardless of whether they are entered for the Combined Science award or the separate Biology qualification.  This covers units in cell biology and organisation, health and disease and bioenergetics.  In Year 10 the pathways start to split and more subject knowledge is entered for the Biology course than in the Combined Science route.  Year 10 students will still study the same units of Ecology, Inheritance and Variation & Evolution.  In Year 11 students study Co-ordination and control while preparing for their examinations. All students will take 2 examinations regardless of the course they enter.

GCSE Chemistry

GCSE Chemistry forms part of the separate science suite. The course follows the AQA GCSE Chemistry specification (8461) as part of a three-year course.

In the first year of the course (Year 9), students learn about the fundamentals of chemistry including atomic structure, the periodic table, types of bonding and basics of quantitative chemistry. Students then use these areas to contextualise their learning looking at the chemistry of the Earth’s resources. During this year students sit one set of annual examinations as well as mid-topic and end of topic class assessments.

Topics covered (Year 9): Atomic Structure & the Periodic Table (Topic 1), Bonding, Structure & the Properties of Matter (Topic 2), Quantitative Chemistry – Part 1 (Topic 3), Using Resources (Unit 10)

The second year of the course (Year 10) looks at chemical reactions in depth and the role of energy in these reactions. Students also engage in greater amounts of practical work, particularly looking at factors affecting the rates of reactions. Students finish the year looking at the role of carbon in chemistry and how this affects life. During this year students sit one set of annual examinations as well as mid-topic and end of topic class assessments.

Topics covered (Year 10): Chemical Changes (Unit 4), Energy Changes (Unit 5), The Rate and Extent of Chemical Change (Topic 6), Organic Chemistry (Unit 7)

The final year of the course (Year 11) starts with students learning about techniques to analyse chemicals before exploring the chemistry of the Earth’s atmosphere. Student then revisit quantitative chemistry at a more advanced level. During this year students sit two sets of rehearsal examinations as well as mid-topic and end of topic class assessments.

Topics covered (Year 11): Chemical Analysis (Topic 8), Chemistry of the Atmosphere (Topic 9), Quantitative Chemistry – Part 2 (Topic 3)

Assessment for this course comes from purely 100% examinations, taken in the examination period (May/June) of Year 11. Two examinations (1hr 45mins) are taken, each being worth 50% of the student final grade. Students are graded on 9-1 scale, with students nearly exclusively sitting higher tiered examination papers.

Specification Link:

Key Stage 5

At Key Stage 5 students can study the following A Level courses:

  • AQA Biology: At KS5 the Academy follows the AQA specification in order to follow on from where pupils left off in GCSE.  Year 12 covers topics such as cell biology, exchange and transport systems and biological molecules.  In Year 13 this progresses to Bioenergetics, inheritance and genetics and ecology. Students will complete three exams, one of which has a synoptic essay component. As part of the A Level course students are also expected to participate in a number of required practical activities in order to achieve their CPAC qualification, which forms part of their final A Level assessment.
  • OCR A, Chemistry: Studying atoms, bonding, reactions, polymers and chemical analysis techniques.
  • AQA Physics: Students in year 1 study Particles and Radiation, Electromagnetic Radiation and Quantum Phenomena, Waves, Mechanics, Materials and Electricity. In year 2 you will study Further Mechanics, Thermal Physics, Gravitational and Electric Fields, Capacitors, Magnetic Fields, Nuclear Physics and an option, which is usually Engineering Physics or Astrophysics. Throughout the course you will also complete a number of required practicals.