This 4 day IB Biology fieldwork course offers an unrivalled opportunity for students.

We will develop their skills in the study of biology and deepen their understanding of ecological content in a variety of inspiring habitats before successfully undertaking a scientific investigation as part of the internal assessment process.

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 selection and use of appropriate statistical tests.

IB Biology has been updated for the 2023 specification for first assessment in 2025.
IB ESS can also be incorporated into our IB programmes

Example Timetable

Example Timetable

The following is an example of how a 4-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, particularly if you are bringing ESS students as well as Biology. There will be some variation between what is offered at specific centres due to habitat availability.

Day 1

Arrive Midday
Welcome by staff, centre tour and introduction, pre-course meeting of FSC staff and teachers, allocation of wellies and waterproofs as appropriate.
Afternoon and evening

Students will use random sampling to compare two habitats, calculate species diversity and investigate variation within a species using Student’s t-test. This could be done in various habitats, including rocky shore, woodland, heathland or moorland depending on the centre visited.

Day 2

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.

Day 3

Scientific Investigation – Research Design and Data Collection
Students will plan, justify and carry out their own ecological investigation for internal assessment. They will identify a research question, develop a methodology, including a trial where appropriate, carry out a risk assessment, and collect data.

Day 4

Analysis, Conclusions & Evaluations
This session allows students time to process and analyse their own data, and research and reference their findings with the support field centre staff and resources.

Depart Midday 

How this course fulfills the specification

How this course fulfills the syllabus

IB Biology:

Detailed coverage of biological content from:

  • Unity & Diversity – Conservation of biodiversity A4.2
  • Form & Function – Adaptation to environment B4.1, Ecological niches B4.2.
  • Interaction & Independence – Population & Communities C4.1, Transfers of Energy & Matter C4.2
  • Continuity & Change – Stability & Change D4.2


There will also be opportunities to make synoptic links to other units.


Detailed coverage of ecological content from:

  • Topic 2 - Ecosystems and ecology
  • Topic 5 - Biodiversity and conservation
  • Topic 4 - Water and aquatic food production systems and societies

There will also be opportunities to make synoptic links to other units.

Internal Assessment

Our courses will provide students with the opportunity to develop their practical skills and knowledge and apply these successfully to independently undertake a scientific investigation for internal assessment. Through first-hand experience in a variety of inspiring habitats, students will be encouraged to demonstrate personal engagement with the exploration of their investigation for internal assessment, working through research design, data collection, analysis, conclusion and evaluation.

For ESS students the sites and ESS issues encountered during the course will provide a context for their research question and encourage them to apply their results to a broader environmental and/or societal context.


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, Mann-Whitney U, 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 skills

  • Communication | Resilience | Independent thinking | Leadership
  • Numeracy | Literacy | Investigative skills | Observation

Enhance Knowledge

  • Ask questions.
  • Apply knowledge in the real world and make links.
  • Make sense of new places and understand our place and role within this.
  • Develop skills in the study of biology


  • Have fun | Make friendships | Connect with nature

Why Choose Field Studies Council?

  • 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