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 most recent examiner feedback.  Teachers will gain knowledge on teaching strategies to embed learning for high achievement and examination success.

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.  The course will also five practical advice, ideas and suggestions for stretching able biologists in your group as well as providing effective teaching methods for those with more modest abilities.


  • 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
  • Heads of Biology
  • All teachers of OCR A level Biology
  • Teachers of A Level Biology looking to change exam boards
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

10.00- 11.00 am Overview and review from recent examinations

  • Review and feedback – the summer 2020 examination and issues arising
  • Lessons learnt from recent exams and how to build these successfully into your teaching
  • How to engage students in the content of the course and how to maximise their focus on what brings the most reward in examinations
  • Modifying your teaching strategies: tackling the most challenging question types and addressing the assessment objectives in every lesson

11.00 – 11.15 am Discussion and coffee break

11.15- 12.15 pm Biological Processes & Diversity: Preparing your students effectively for the extended answer questions

  • Strategies to prepare your students effectively for extended questions in the three exam papers – what students do well and poorly in the exams
  • How help students in writing high-achieving responses in these questions
  • Key essentials that students must know in biological processes & diversity
  • Setting exam targets and giving high impact feedback for class tests

12.15-1.00 pm 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
  • How to use feedback to improve your students exam question responses
  • Strategies to help students in writing high-achieving responses to these questions

1.00- 2.00 pm Lunch and informal discussion

2.00 -2.45pm 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

2.45 – 3.30 pm 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

3.30-3.45pm Plenary

  • 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 >