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Key Stage 4 Overview



Science is one of the core subjects of the National Curriculum and therefore it is compulsory in Year 10 and 11. There are 6 x 50 minute lessons per week. Students will have 3 different teachers for Science lessons - one for Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  

The exam board that is used at Thornleigh is AQA. 

Most students will study Combined Science GCSE. Within Combined Science students are awarded 2 GCSE grades but these are known as a split grade and come in the format of 9-9, 9-8, 8-8 etc. This is a 17 grade scale.

With the reformed qualification all controlled assessment has been removed and practical work is assessed through the terminal exam of which there are 6 papers, two for each of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Each paper is worth 16.6% of the GCSE. Some students will be entered for Higher Tier papers and some students will be entered for Foundation Tier papers.


Year 10


Classification of organisms

Organisation of the circulatory system


Organisation of the digestive system



Energy changes

Rate of reaction

Organic chemistry

Chemical analysis

Chemistry of the atmosphere



Forces and motion



Year 11


Cell division and microscopy



Variation and evolution




Quantitative chemistry

Using resources




Magnetism and Electromagnetism