Science

About the FacultyPupils studying science at Christ College will have access to high-quality facilities to help enhance their studies and gain the skills needed for future careers within the scientific field.

Our science faculty is fully equipped with the latest scientific apparatus and teaching resources to ensure our pupils are receiving up-to-the-minute education, while our wildlife area help give our pupils a practical experience into the world of science.

On top of the first-class facilities, we have strong links with both the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Institute of Physics, where our students can attend fascinating talks and our Form Six pupils can gain an enhanced educational experience with a five-day residential ecology field trip at Dale Fort in Pembrokeshire. Our Year eight and Year 10 pupils also enjoy hands-on workshops with the Medical Mavericks to learn about careers in the NHS.

We are delighted to see our pupils excel in science and have seen many of them successfully compete in national competitions, such as the annual online Biology Challenge and the Junior and Senior Olympiad competitions, and have been proud to see our pupils choose careers within the science field and gain successful entry into Oxford and Cambridge.

 

Subjects

Biology

The courses offered provide the opportunity to gain a sound understanding of Biology through the study of fundamental biological principles whilst exploring modern applications of Biology. The courses provide an appropriate foundation for further study of Biology or related subjects in higher education.

Chemistry

Chemistry is taught in the Queen's building, which includes three custom built teaching laboratories, which contains all necessary resources. 

Junior students at Christ College annually enter the chemistry Olympiad quiz, and visits have been arranged to go around chemical industrial sites within South Wales.

A Level students spend a day in Swansea University undertaking organic synthesis and seeing spectroscopy at first hand. They also attend the annual RSC lecture at Christ College where they often get the chance to listen to a prominent leader in the cutting edge of current research. In 2013 we were delighted to invite Professor Paul McMillan, UCL to discuss his work in High Pressure Science.

Students wishing to study at a higher level of chemistry for Oxbridge entrance and the RSC Olympiad are invited to attend extra tutorials taught by the Head of Department.

Chemistry at Christ College is a voyage of discovery and understanding of this fascinating subject. Taught wherever possible from an experimental viewpoint, we aim to secure the best possible results for all of our pupils.

All of us possess the ability to appreciate nature and the world around us. However for many that appreciation alone is not enough, we require an understanding of our domain, and that understanding is the world of chemistry. Everything that we touch, everything that we see or taste is chemistry. From the air that we breathe, to the colour of the flowers, to the strength of a diamond - all is revealed in an understanding of chemistry.

The study of chemistry – or biochemistry - is essential to our understanding of the human body. Some 80% of the body is water. Dehydrate that water and you are left with approximately 12 kg of chemicals – some of the most breathtakingly complex and beautiful of molecules – but chemicals all the same. Every thought or emotion that passes across your mind involves the flow of neurotransmitters (chemicals) between synapses in the brain. The next wonder drug will be made by chemists of the future.

The majority of the universe is composed of just the two simplest elements - hydrogen and helium. All of the other 100 plus elements are formed when a dying star collapses in upon itself, and under immense temperatures and pressures produced fuses these simple elements into heavier ones. As the dying star explodes it scatters it soul and with it these elements to the solar winds.

These eventually coalesce into new worlds, and these are the elements that combine to make up your body – born in the stars – you are literally stardust!

Physical Education

Physical Education is compulsory at KS3, with all pupils having at least 1 x 35 minute lesson per week. At KS3 pupils follow a variety of activities which make use of the school facilities but which do not replicate the Games programme too much. Pupils will experience: gymnastics, basketball, badminton, Health Related Fitness, athletics, short tennis, tennis, squash and minor games. In addition, pupils have two timetabled games lessons of 70 minutes where they are introduced to, Rugby, Soccer, Cricket, Netball and Hockey.

 

At KS5 A-Level the OCR specification is followed. Pupils are allocated 8x35 minute lessons most of which are taught in 70 minute blocks. Pupils will sit written exams and be assessed in one practical sport. The written exams will cover Anatomy and Physiology, Sport Psychology and Sociological Issues. In addition, pupils are also required to complete an Evaluation and Analysis of performance for improvement. This can be in a sport different to the one that they have chosen to be practically assessed in.

Trips to local Universities provide A-Level students with the opportunity to see some of the more physiological topics in practice. Such as, VO2 max testing.

Physics

All students studying Physics at Christ College will experience the variety and the excitement of a developing and contemporary science. With two full time experienced Physics teachers we aim to stimulate curiosity, interest and enjoyment in a fascinating and challenging subject. Physics is both a theoretical and a practical subject and our teaching at all ages reflects this.

Regular extra sessions are arranged to prepare pupils for the British Physics Olympiad and Oxbridge entrance exams.

During their time at Christ College our students will gain knowledge and understanding from the traditional physics of mechanics and forces, electrical circuits and the Solar System through to challenging modern ideas such as particle and quantum physics.

The Department is housed in the Hubert Jones Science Centre. Pupils have access to a wide range of facilities both within the department and across the school which support their learning. These include the new laboratories, and excellent IT facilities. Both teachers aim to make themselves available for additional help and advice throughout the school day.

Each year a significant number of 6th Formers go on from Christ College to pursue science and physics-related courses at top UK Universities including Physics, engineering, architecture, medicine and computer science.

Psychology

Psychology is the science of human behaviour. Studying the subject involves investigating the mind, something intangible that exists within our brain: an unseen process of enzymes, chemicals and electric currents. You will look at questions like why people suffer from stress or mental illness, or why some people are considered abnormal for deviating from social norms.

Psychology is a fascinating science with cutting edge research that has real world applications. The course will also help you develop a wide skill base as it will involve analytical thinking, problem solving, data analysis and interpretation as well as critical reasoning skills, so should complement a wide range of other subject choices.

At a Glance

Subjects Offered

  • Junior Science
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • P.E.
  • Psychology

Head of Faculty

Ms Sally Jones

Department Members

  • Physics - Mr Tony Reeves
  • Chemistry - Mr Lewis Morgan
  • Biology - Ms Sally Jones
  • P.E - Miss Sorrel Hunter
  • Psychology- Mrs Rhiannon Goodrich

See Also