In this updated course, we will look at the skills and assessment across the 3 OCR A Level papers: Biological Processes, Biological Diversity and Unified Biology and share ideas on how to address any issues and concerns raised after the latest Summer A level examinations in 2019.  Teachers will gain knowledge on teaching strategies to embed learning for high achievement and will use feedback from the 2019 exams to develop ideas for teaching high quality examination technique.

The sessions will give you the opportunity to take away concrete strategies, so you can return to your classrooms with the ideas, skills and confidence to prepare for teaching the next year of this specification.


  • Gain vital understanding of how to prepare your students for the more challenging aspects of the OCR specification and assessments
  • An in depth analysis of the types of questions and mark schemes for these 3 papers and feedback on performance in 2018
  • Strategies for teaching successful exam performance in OCR A-level Biology
  • Learn engaging teaching strategies to cover the higher-level assessment objectives and make sure students succeed in the exams
  • Obtain teaching and learning ideas to ensure high level learning is embedded throughout the course, to produce successful Biology students
  • All teachers of OCR A level Biology
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of 50+ pages full of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance
  • Two course restaurant lunch
  • Refreshments throughout the day
  • Guaranteed high quality venues


10.00- 11.00am
Overview and Review from Summer 2019 examination

  • Review and feedback – the summer 2019 examination and issues arising
  • Lessons learnt from 2018/19 and how to build these successfully into your teaching
  • Modifying your teaching strategies: tackling the most challenging question types and addressing the assessment objectives in every lesson

11.00 – 11.15am
Discussion and coffee break

11.15- 12.15pm
Biological Processes & Diversity: Preparing your students effectively for extended answer questions including Level of Response questions

  • Successfully embedding and applying highly effective exam technique
  • Exploring the skills necessary for success with the extended questions in the 3 papers at A level – what students do well and poorly in the exams
  • Strategies to aid students in writing high-achieving responses in these questions
  • Setting exam targets and giving high impact feedback for class tests
  • Creating a culture of self-reflection and improvement at A level

Practical and Mathematical Skills and Questions

  • Embedding practical and mathematical skills across the course
  • Examiners’ advice for tackling the more challenging maths and hitting the top grades
  • Understanding the style/nature of the questions and the mark schemes, using feedback from 2019
  • Strategies to aid students in writing high-achieving responses to these questions

1.00- 2.00pm
Lunch and informal discussion

2.00 -2.30pm
Unifying Concepts across the A level

  • Pulling it all together: adapting your teaching to successfully delivering the breadth within the A level course
  • Sourcing synoptic questions and the mark schemes and using them to achieve high performance
  • Developing synoptic skills early and embedding them throughout the course
  • Using metacognitive strategies to help students gain a deeper understanding of challenging topics.
  • Gaining strategies to aid students in writing high-achieving responses to synoptic questions

2.30 – 3.30pm
Active learning strategies in A level Biology: raise attainment and value-added by modifying your practice in simple yet effective ways

  • Strategies for successful teaching: moving away from ‘lectures’ but still covering all the content
  • Flipped learning
  • Independent learning & self-regulation how to encourage, motivate and use to ensure high performance
  • Peer tuition and collaboration


  • Collaborative planning plenary activity – strategies for success in the exams

John Medlicott

John has taught for 25 years and has trained teachers for over 15 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.

View all courses led by John Medlicott >