National 5 Biology

This exciting course in Biology covers three main subject areas:

Unit 1: Cell Biology - What happens inside the tiny cells which make up our bodies, and the all other living things, which help to keep us alive? This will include: study of cell structure and function, transport in cells, production of new cells, DNA and protein production, enzymes and their role in cells, genetic engineering, photosynthesis, and respiration.

Unit 2: Multi-cellular Organisms - How do plants and animals control their bodies and behaviour to survive? This will include: Specialisation of cells and tissues, the role of stem cells, controlling the body (role of the brain, nerves and hormones), reproduction and inheritance, transport systems in animals (heart and blood) and plants, and effect of lifestyle on health and wellbeing.

Unit 3: Life on Earth - How is all life on the Earth interconnected, and what are the current threats to life on earth? This will include: Factors affecting Biodiversity and distribution of life on Earth, how energy moves in the ecosystem, how nutrients (e.g. nitrogen) are recycled in the ecosystem, sampling and measuring of environmental factors, natural selection and evolution, and the human impact on the environment.

How will the course be assessed?

The National 5 course is assessed by a mixture of internal assessment and a final external exam in May.

At the end of each unit there is a NAR ( National Assessment Resource). These tests assess key area knowledge and problem solving skills . A pass in each unit is essential to be presented for the National 5 Exam. In Graeme High 'AB' tests are also given at the end of each unit. These tests reflect the standard of questions learners will be presented with in the final exam.

Learners have to complete the formal write up of an assessed practical (experiment/investigation) as part of the National 5 Biology course. Learners must also produce an assignment in which 20 marks are available and count towards their overall total mark.

The following websites are really useful and are a great way to study when you need a change from your notes and summary sheets.  


This is a great website with many learning activities

Use N5 BBC Bitesize to revise

Online text book to help with revision