Biology Competition

6th Biology Olympiad

18th June 2020

(Gatsby Benchmark 7)

This competition is aimed at AS Level Biology students who plan to progress to A Level. The Olympiad will test Biological knowledge and skills whilst giving a taste of studying at undergraduate level. Planned activities are synced with the Biology A/AS Level syllabus, to build on Year 12 through to Year 13 and each will include a short introductory piece. Last year’s event included:

  • Genetics and Molecular Biology: In this activity, teams will use a standardised protocol to extract DNA from cells. Marks will be awarded for quality of work and quantity of extracted DNA.
  • Tropical Plant Physiology: In this activity, teams will measure the leaf surface area of tropical plants and estimate their total water loss over 24h. Marks will be awarded for the fasted and most accurate team.
  • Tissue Identification: In this activity, teams will receive already stained tissue samples and will need to identify them under the microscope. Marks will be awarded based on accuracy of identification.
  • Species identification: In this activity, the teams will test their identification skills, which is the initial step in understanding biodiversity. This practical will test and develop these skills in biological identification in a fun way.

Schedule (subject to change):

09:45-10:15        Arrival and Welcome

10:15-11:40        Competition Activities

11:45-14:00         Lunch

12:35-14:00         Competition Activities

14:10-14:30        Results and Prize Giving

We invite you to select students to attend in teams of 3-5 students. Please note that we will have a maximum of 100 students at the event, with a maximum of 2 teams per school. The day will also include a demonstration of the scanning electron microscope (booked separately) and students will leave with their own thermal imaging camera photo.

To book onto events please email the Education Liaison Officer responsible for your region, or email

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