This course is for all teachers of A level Biology looking to develop new approaches for extending their very able student to achieve an A*.

We will explore proven strategies to challenge the most able students in A level Biology, whilst still effectively supporting the rest of the student’s learning. The course is practically focused and delegates will take away a range of approaches, ideas, and new thinking to impact their pupil’s learning.


  • Learn how to set and sustain high expectations across the whole group
  • Take away new teaching approaches to develop higher order thinking skills in a biological context
  • Take away a range of new ideas, resources and ideas
  • Find out more about preparing able students for Oxbridge and Medical interviews


COURSE DATES London Monday 19 March 2018
London Friday 22 June 2018
London Friday 30 November 2018
WHO FOR?  Teachers of AS/A Biology
Heads of Science looking for refreshed approaches across the faculty
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
Detailed notes On-line materials
Powerpoint presentations CPD Certificate
 High quality training facilities Sit-down buffet lunch



10.00 – 11.15am: Setting High Expectations Across the Whole Group

  • Setting high expectations across the whole group to ensure the highest achievers flourish
  • Stimulating and teaching a growth mindset
  • Differentiation which allows stretch and challenge
  • Strategies which specifically work with gifted students

11.15 – 11.30am: Discussion: coffee break


11.30 – 11.45am: Discussion: sharing of best A* strategies, great practice, resources and ideas


11.45 – 1.00pm: Top strategies for challenging the most able students in the new specifications

  • Strategies & resources to cover A01 and the lower order skills quickly
  • Teaching for metacognition
  • Feedback for fast progress and target setting for very able students
  • Formative strategies and approaches on how to construct outstanding exam responses
  • Developing research and referencing skills

1.00 – 2.00pm: Lunch and informal discussion


2.00 – 2.45pm: The development of practical, mathematical and higher order thinking skills in a biological context

  • How to develop critical thinking skills
  • Encouraging the young biologist through argument
  • Enhancing problem solving and tackling difficult mathematical questions
  • Nurturing and stretching able students to achieve the highest levels in practical and synoptic questions

2.45 – 3.00pm: Discussion: afternoon tea


3.00 – 3.30pm: Preparing able students for Oxbridge and Medical interviews

  • Advising potential undergraduates on their application: preparation and the personal statement
  • What to comment on in your reference
  • Mock interviews/assisting in interview preparation

3.30 – 3.45pm: Final discussion, top tips and depart

John Medlicott

John has taught for 15 years and has trained teachers for over 10 years where he is regularly graded as “outstanding” by delegates on their evaluation forms. This year he has chaired National Conferences in School Leadership & Teaching and Learning and has led a debate on “the future of A levels” and “Implications of the new OFSTED Framework” at the 6th annual Sixth Form Leadership conference in London.  He has held a number of Senior Management positions as well as leading departments both in the UK and internationally.