National 5 CPD webinar programme 2017

We are running a programme of subject-specific Understanding Standards webinars to help prepare teachers/lecturers for the revised National 5 course assessments.

The National 5 Biology webinar will take place on Thursday 15th June 2017.

Please note that places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

To book a place, please click on the following link – …

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Skills for Work Health Sector National 4 and 5

The National 4 and 5 Skills for Work Health Sector units have recently been re-coded to align with the corresponding course codes. There has been no change to the unit content.

The unit information has been extracted from the Course Specification and published in new Unit Specification documents. These can be accessed through the NQ unit search page on our website.

The …

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Biology Verification Key Messages – Round 1 (March 2017)

Round 1 Verification Key Messages for Biology have now been published on SQA’s website.

To access the Verification Key Messages, please click on the link below:

Round 1 Biology Verification Key Messages – 2017

For further information, please contact Paula –

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Changes to National 5 Biology course assessment

We have recently published further information with regard to the changes to National 5 Biology course assessment for session 2017-18 onwards.

Changes to coursework:

Experimental/fieldwork will become a mandatory feature of the assignment, which will result in some changes to the activities that make up the assignment. The assignment will be worth 20 marks and will contribute to 20% of the course assessment.

There will no longer be a requirement for the aim to be linked to an application of biology and its effect on the environment/society. This will allow for a wider range of experiments / fieldwork to be carried out that could be appropriate for gathering data for use in the assignment. We will produce a list of appropriate experiments/fieldwork at National 5 level which can be used, however this list will not be exhaustive.

We are currently working in partnership with SSERC and the Wellcome Trust to produce resource materials for the assignment that will help support you. We will also produce two exemplar assignments with an accompanying commentary.

Changes to the exam:

The question paper will be extended to include more questions and the number of available marks will increase from 80 marks to 100 marks, as follows:

Section 1 – 25 marks
Section 2 – 75 marks

The duration of the exam will increase from 2 hours to 2 hours 30 minutes.

Reasons for these changes:

The question paper is being extended to ensure it samples a greater amount of course content, following the removal of units.

Experimental/fieldwork will become a mandatory feature of the assignment, following the removal of the units which currently assess this within outcome 1.

Additional information:

The assignment will be scaled to maintain the current 20%:80% course assessment weighting.

We are removing some content from the course following feedback from teachers who indicated that there is more course content than necessary. The mandatory content is currently being reviewed based on survey results and feedback from the Royal Society of Biology and National Qualifications Support Team (NQST) members. This will include a list of apparatus and techniques with which candidates should be familiar.

For further information, please visit the changes to …

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2017 marker opportunities

We are still accepting marker applications from teaching professionals to contribute to the 2017 examination diet.

SQA markers are at the heart of our examination operations, gaining valuable insight into assessment and quality assurance processes. Becoming a marker helps to increase your awareness of the demands of course assessment and provides excellent professional and personal development.

If you are interested in …

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Biology/Human Biology – Available Support (updated March 2017)

To support teachers and lecturers, we have produced a detailed list of all of the SQA Biology/Human Biology resources that are available. The PDF document provides hyperlinks that will take you directly to the various resources. The PDF document has been updated to included resources that were published in March 2017.

To access the PDF document, please click on the …

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