IB Biology


Nature of the Subject

This Course enables the students to study Biology at differing levels of complexity.  For biologists who wish to take the subject forward in future studies, knowledge at a Higher Level is expected.  Students at Standard Level will benefit from the emphasis on a broad, general understanding of the subject and its wide application to everyday life.

Students choosing this course need a broad science background at IGCSE level or equivalent and also a good standard of mathematical skills.

The Biology course links particularly well with Chemistry, Mathematics and Geography.  It provides a useful foundation for a wide range of scientific, technical and medical careers.

Biology is offered at both HL and SL at GIS.

The Syllabus

Basic biological principles running through the course are:

The syllabus comprises core studies and options as follows:

Core for SL and HL:           1. Statistical Analysis

                                      2.  Cells

                                      3.  The Chemistry of life

                                      4.  Genetics

                                      5.  Ecology and evolution

                                      6.  Human health and physiology

Higher Level only:            7.  Nucleic acids and proteins

                                      8.  Cell respiration and photosynthesis

                                      9.  Plant science

                                     10. Genetics

                                     11. Human Health and Physiology

Investigations and practical work account for 25% total teaching time.  This includes a 10-15 hours Group 4 Project. A further two option topics are studied.


76% based on External exams at the end of Year 13, a combination of multiple choice, short answer and extended response questions.  A total of  3 hours SL and 4 ½ hours HL.

24% internal assessment from the PSOW (Practical Scheme of Work) directed by the teacher.  A wide variety of investigative exercises are carried out including short-term practical work, projects, computer simulations, laboratory manipulative skills and fieldwork.