KS4 Triple Science

Triple Science

Students who choose the THREE SEPARATE SCIENCES will have more science lessons per fortnight for all three years of the course.  It is NOT possible to switch to this route at a later stage – the courses need to begin at the start of Year 9.

Students who choose three separate sciences would have an advantage when starting Advanced level science courses in the sixth-form.  However, this particular door does not close and it is possible for pupils to start A-level sciences from the core Double Science route, providing that they score highly enough on the relevant papers, and they are prepared to complete a “bridging task” after their GCSEs at the end of Year 11.

Common Aims (All Science Courses)

  • To provide scientific knowledge and understanding which will enable students to engage with science based issues as informed citizens.
  • To help students make sensible, informed decisions about their lifestyle and environment.
  • To provide students with an enjoyable and exciting course of study, which will build on their work from Key Stage 3, and stimulate a genuine interest in how and why things happen in their world.
  • To enable students with good GCSE grades to embark on a range of scientific A-Levels and post-16 courses, leading to a huge range of career options.

Content: Year 9-11 “Triple Science” option

  • Pupils choosing this option will work towards three entirely separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics, starting in Year 9.
  • The course includes practical skills and scientific thinking, as well as everyday scientific issues and scientific knowledge.  There is a considerable amount of practical work, which includes, but is not limited to, 8 defined practical tasks for each subject (a total of 24) that pupils must complete so that they have the experience to answer questions about them in the end-of-course examinations.
  • The content of the course is a more than adequate base for moving on to the corresponding Science A-Level or post-16 course if the examinations are passed well enough at the end of the course in Year 11.

Examination: Year 9-11 “Triple Science” option

The assessment is administered by AQA and the course codes are:

Pupils will take six written examinations of 1h45min each at the end of year 11, all worth an equal amount.  There are two papers each for biology, chemistry and physics.  They are longer than the papers taken by pupils on other courses and each one counts for 50% of the corresponding qualification.  Questions on the defined practical tasks will be included, so good attendance throughout the course is important.

A decision will be made in Year 11 as to whether the papers will be taken at foundation or higher Tier.  Both papers for any given subject have to be at the same tier, but they can be of different tiers for different qualifications.  For example a pupil might take higher tier Biology papers but foundation tier Chemistry papers.  Several permutations are possible based on performance by the time of examination entry in Year 11.

Foundation papers can lead to awards from grade 1 (lowest) to 5.  Higher papers can lead to awards from grade 4 to 9 (highest) with a safety net award of grade 3 for a borderline performance.  Anyone entered for higher tier papers but performing below this level would get an Unclassified (U) grade.  The grades have one number to reflect that they are worth one GCSE each.  The highest grade is 9, and the grades then go 8, 7 and so on down to the lowest pass, grade 1.  In effect it is a nine-point scale, applied separately and independently to each of the three subjects.

More Information

Follow us at: https://twitter.com/LongdeanScience for information, revision tips and science news.

[Back to Science]

Updated 10/03/2022