Alongside developing scientific knowledge, the range of transferable skills developed by studying Biology includes analysis, teamwork, manual dexterity, mathematics and independent and logical thinking skills.

Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9 | core subject

From Year 7, Biology, along with the other sciences is taught as a separate subject to all pupils.

In Year 9 preparation for IGCSE begins and pupils will begin learning elements of that IGCSE course.

Year 10 and 11, IGCSE | option subject

For IGCSE although Biology is an option subject, all pupils are strongly encouraged to continue their study of at least two of the three sciences.

Biology IGCSE develops an appreciation for the significance of biological facts, concepts and principles alongside the skills needed for their application in an ever-changing world. Pupils develop excellent dexterity skills through accurate experimental readings. Analysing data allows pupils to draw apposite conclusions which they can compare to the theories studied. A strong understanding of the benefits and drawbacks of the latest scientific and technological developments is also nurtured with a critical eye to how these will influence social, environmental and economic issues.

– There are no specific academic requirements to study IGCSE Biology. The IGCSE material covered during Year 9 is the basis for the rest of the course and it is essential that pupils spend time consolidating this work before commencing Biology IGCSE in Year 10.

– Edexcel IGCSE 4BI1 Biology

Sixth Form, A-Level | option subject

A-Level Biology is both challenging and stimulating, appealing to the logical thinker to help students understand the biological advances and discoveries being made around us. Students of Biology will gain a range of practical skills and techniques that will give them a firm foundation in any Biology-related field they wish to pursue to degree level. There is assessed practical work, but no assessed coursework involved.

– Grade 7 at (I)GCSE Biology.


– AQA A-Level 7402 Biology

John Lyon Success

– 60% of A-Level students gained A*-B grades.
– 54% of IGCSE pupils achieved a 9 or 8 grade.
– Suleiman Shurafa (OL2019) left John Lyon to read Medicine at Queen Mary, University of London.

Outside the Classroom

John Lyon’s programme of extra-curricular activities includes a number of options directly related to or complementary to Biology, such as Biochemistry Journal Club, Biomedical Club, Dexterity Club and Wildlife Club.

Beyond School

The Biology A-Level course is held in high regard by universities and employers as it equips its students with a logical mind and many transferable skills, such as reasoning, problem-solving and research skills alongside communicating ideas clearly. The skills gained provide a firm grounding in any Biology related degree. Biology is required for studies in Natural Sciences, Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacology, Veterinary Science, Botany, Zoology, Physiotherapy, Psychology, Genetics and other similar courses. This can open up possibilities to work towards any biological or medical career such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and research.