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OCR A A-Level Biology Exemplar Course Programme · PDF filewill form the basis of exam answers...

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  • FIELD STUDIES COUNCIL

    Slapton Ley Field Centre OCR A A-Level Biology Course Programme

    FSC Slapton Ley, Slapton, Kingsbridge, Devon, TQ7 2QP

    Tel: 01548 580466 E-mail: [email protected] Website: www.field-studies-council.org/centres/slapton/slaptonley.aspx

    Field Studies Council is a limited Company, registered in England and Wales No. 412621 and a Charity No. 313364. Registered Office; Preston Montford, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY4 1HW

    OCR A A-Level Biology Exemplar Course Programme

    For teaching from September 2015

    Slapton Ley Field Centre is located on the Start Bay coast in South Devon and is surrounded by Slapton Ley National

    Nature Reserve. The Ley is the largest natural freshwater lake in the South West and is separated from the sea by Slapton

    Sands, a barrier beach. The 214 hectare reserve has been managed by FSC Slapton Ley for over 50 years as an "outdoor

    laboratory" for education and conservation, and boasts a rich mosaic of habitats including ancient and coppiced

    woodland, freshwater lake and stream, shingle ridge and rocky shore. The centre offers visitors of all ages the opportunity

    to experience a unique outdoor learning environment in combination with specialist teaching and facilities.

    Our new courses have been designed to fit the criteria of the specifications for first teaching in 2015 and offer:

    Subject content contextualized through a range of special habitats. In particular the course will cover aspects of modules 1, 4 and 6 of the new OCR A specification.

    Practical skills and use of apparatus and techniques embedded into ecological investigations using a range of laboratory and field equipment. The course will deliver a rich practical experience for students that covers a wide range of practical activity groups (PAGs) as recommended by OCR.

    Integration of mathematical skills into investigative fieldwork and practicals.

    mailto::%[email protected]

  • FIELD STUDIES COUNCIL

    Slapton Ley Field Centre OCR A A-Level Biology Course Programme

    FSC Slapton Ley, Slapton, Kingsbridge, Devon, TQ7 2QP

    Tel: 01548 580466 E-mail: [email protected] Website: www.field-studies-council.org/centres/slapton/slaptonley.aspx

    Field Studies Council is a limited Company, registered in England and Wales No. 412621 and a Charity No. 313364. Registered Office; Preston Montford, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY4 1HW

    OCR A Biodiversity, Ecosystems and Practical Activities 5 Days Day AM PM EVE

    1 Arrive 1200, settle in to rooms

    Welcome to Slapton Ley, hire waterproofs etc. Biodiversity and Ecosystems: Past, Present and Future During this introductory session, students will begin to explore the habitats of Slapton Ley National Nature Reserve. Students will be encouraged to observe and appreciate ecosystems at differing scales, considering what has shaped these in the past, what ecological processes are happening now and how these ecosystems might change in the future.

    Introduction to Ecology Leading on from the afternoons activities, students will have an introduction to the study of ecology including: -What is ecology? (definition of key terminology) - After immersion in environment do we think ecology matters? - How do we know what good science is? How do we achieve it? - Setting personal objectives

    2 Rocky Shore Ecology: Biodiversity Assessment and Sampling

    PAG 3: Sampling techniques. Students will investigate a rocky shore ecosystem using random and non-random sampling techniques: quadrat sampling in different areas and a transect up or down the shore. They will practise identifying and classifying rocky shore species and will consider variations within and between species. They will consider how those species are adapted anatomically, physiologically and behaviourally. Data analysis can include calculations of Simpsons Index of Diversity and Students t-test. Factors affecting rocky shore biodiversity will be considered and the importance of baseline monitoring discussed.

    PAG 10: Data Logging. Data loggers will be used in rock pools to monitor environmental variables such as temperature and salinity. Whilst the conditions are being monitored changes in the responses of organisms like beadlet anemones or periwinkles will be recorded.

    A woodland based day covering the same topics is available as an alternative to the rocky shore should the tides or transport costs prove prohibitive.

    PAG 6: Separation of biological compounds using paper chromatography Students will use paper chromatography to show the different photosynthetic pigments found in different types of seaweed (rocky shore) or in sun and shade tolerant leaves (woodland).

    3 Populations in Ecosystems: Succession on Slapton Sands Shingle Ridge Students will introduced to the theory of succession and see first-hand how succession progresses in a vegetated shingle ecosystem. Concepts of primary succession, deflected succession and recycling within ecosystems will be discussed. Students will investigate the change in plant communities in relation to changes in environmental factors such as wind speed, soil depth, soil moisture and identify adaptations that are common to each community and allow that community to thrive. Students will use Spearmans Rank correlation coefficient to test their data for correlations between biotic and abiotic factors on the shingle ridge.

    Ecosystem Management and Conservation The ecological, economic, social, ethical and aesthetic reasons for conserving of biological resources and for maintaining biodiversity will be considered. Building on examples from Slapton Ley NNR, students will explore the conflicts between conservation and human needs.

    or PAG 11: Investigation into the measurement of plant or animal responses. Students will investigate the behavioural responses of an animal to different abiotic factors by designing simple choice experiments. The results will be linked to the adaptations these species have to their environments. Students will consider the safe and ethical use of organisms, ensuring optimal survival conditions are maintained before, during and after the experiments.

    mailto::%[email protected]

  • FIELD STUDIES COUNCIL

    Slapton Ley Field Centre OCR A A-Level Biology Course Programme

    FSC Slapton Ley, Slapton, Kingsbridge, Devon, TQ7 2QP

    Tel: 01548 580466 E-mail: [email protected] Website: www.field-studies-council.org/centres/slapton/slaptonley.aspx

    Field Studies Council is a limited Company, registered in England and Wales No. 412621 and a Charity No. 313364. Registered Office; Preston Montford, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY4 1HW

    4 Freshwater Ecology in Slapton Wood Stream PAGS 3 (Sampling techniques) & 12 (Research Skills): Planning Students will research and plan an individual ecological investigation to carry out the following day, using the knowledge of sampling (PAG 3) they have acquired during the course. A range of habitats can be used for this investigation.

    Biodiversity, Biomass and Trophic Levels

    Students will use primary data to construct pyramids of number, biomass and energy for the stream ecosystem. They will use these to consider the efficiency of energy transfer. Light and dark algal bottles could be used to estimate the total amount of energy being fixed through photosynthesis within an ecosystem.

    Populations: Distribution, Abundance and Chi-squared Students will sample two microhabitats in Slapton Wood Stream, measuring the abundance of different organisms in each. Students will use this data to test if there is association between trophic level and micro-habitat using the chi-squared statistical test. They will also identify specific adaptations and consider how these enable different species to survive in a particular microhabitats.

    5 PAGS 3 & 12: Data collection Students will carry out their planned individual investigation. They will use the most appropriate equipment and methods and control key variables. They will work safely, assessing the risks of working in the selected habitat and making adjustments if necessary.

    Course finishes at 1230

    Please note that to ensure safe and quality learning experiences for students, the

    timetable may alter depending on weather

    conditions and tide times.

    Specification links, Core Practicals, Assessment Skills & Mathematics

    Maths Skills: Mathematical skills now make up at least 10% of the marks at A level and this is reflected by their prominence throughout the course. Embedded into each session will be numerous opportunities for students to practice and develop their arithmetic and numerical computation, data handling, algebra, and graphical skills. Students will also have the opportunity to carry out up to three statistical tests (Spearmans rank, Students t-test and chi-squared) on their own primary data.

    Specification Links: Module 1 (1.1 and 1.2): Development of Practical Skills in Biology Module 4 (4.2.1 and 4.2.2): Biodiversity, evolution and disease Module 5 (5.1.5): Communication, homeostasis and energy Module 6 (6.1.2, 6.3.1 and 6.3.2): Genetics, evolution and ecosystems

    Apparatus & Technique Skills: 1.2.2(a): Use appropriate apparatus to record quantitative measurements 1.2.2(e): Produce scientific drawing from observation with annotations 1.2.2 (g): Separation of biological compounds using thin layer/paper chromatography 1.2.2(h): Safely and ethically use organisms to measure plant or animal responses 1.2.2(k): Use sampling techniques in fieldwork

    1.2.2(l)

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