A 3-day FSC A Level Biology course offers a fantastic opportunity for students to undertake ecological investigations in a variety of inspiring habitats and complete relevant Required Practicals. Students will develop their practical skills, use of apparatus and techniques, and deepen their understanding of ecological syllabus content and synoptic links through first-hand experience. 

A wide range of mathematical skills are embedded into every course, including a variety of graphical forms, calculations such as Simpson’s index of diversity, standard deviation, uncertainties and percentage error, and the appropriate use of statistical tests. 

Example Timetable

Example Timetable

The following is an example of how a 3-day course might look. Our courses are as flexible as possible to meet your requirements, with other topics and skills able to be substituted into this timetable. There will be some variation between what is offered at specific centres due to habitat availability.

Day 1

Arrive Midday 
Welcome by FSC staff, centre tour and introduction, pre-course meeting of FSC staff and teachers, allocation of wellies and waterproofs as appropriate.
Afternoon and evening - Introduction to Ecology  
In this session the basics of the ecology toolkit will be covered, including sampling skills and key terminology. Students will consider the scientific route to enquiry in an ecological context.

Day 2

Succession (including RP 12) 
A full day session investigating succession using systematic sampling. Students will measure abundance and distribution of species and analyse the data using Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient. Will cover Required Practical 12.

Day 3

Choice chambers and mark-release-recapture (including RP 10) 
A half-day session looking at population dynamics and animal behaviour. Students can set up mark, release, recapture studies and use choice chambers to study innate behaviours in organisms. Will cover Required Practical 10.

Depart Midday 

How this course fulfills the specification

How this course fulfills the specification

Detailed coverage of ecological content from units 3.4, 3.5 and 3.7 with opportunities to make synoptic links to other units.

Practical Endorsement

Our courses will include Required Practical 12 and can also incorporate Required Practicals 7 and 10.

There will be multiple opportunities to assess all five CPAC through the completion of any Required Practicals and during other practical activities, including those that require demonstration of independence and some degree of choice (e.g., CPAC 2).

Students will be encouraged to use IT for data collection and analysis, and to carry out referenced research (CPAC 5). Students will undertake risk assessment for all environments visited and techniques used (CPAC 3).

Practical Skills, Apparatus and Techniques

The ‘hands on’ nature of our courses provide multiple opportunities for students to apply the practical skills on which they will be assessed and develop and demonstrate their use of apparatus and techniques including ATa, ATe, ATh, ATk, and ATl.

These skills will be integrated and contextualised within the topics and ecological investigations undertaken.

Maths and Statistical Skills

Our courses include a wide range of applied maths and graphical skills and, depending on the topics covered, can cover the following statistical tests: Student’s t-test, Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient and the chi-squared test. Students can also calculate Simpson’s index of diversity using their own data.

Added value of this course

  • Develop personal skills
  • Have fun
  • Be inspired by a passion for the subject
  • Build friendships

Why Choose FSC?

  • Expert tuition by fully trained staff

  • Stunning locations across the UK

  • Outstanding curriculum knowledge

  • Rigorous health and safety procedures

  • Support before and after your visit

  • Free places for visiting staff