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Larkhall Academy

Higher Human Biology

Human Cells

In this Unit, learners will develop knowledge and understanding through studying stem cells, differentiation in somatic and germline cells, and the research and therapeutic value of stem cells and cancer cells. The Unit covers the key areas of division and differentiation in human cells; structure and replication of DNA; gene expression; genes and proteins in health and disease; human genomics; metabolic pathways; cellular respiration; energy systems in muscle cells. Analytical thinking and problem solving skills will be developed in context, through investigation of DNA, the expression of the genotype, and protein production, which allows study of mutations and genetic disorders. DNA technology is covered, including sequencing and medical and forensic applications. In addition, the Unit covers metabolic pathways and their control, through enzymes, with emphasis on cellular respiration and the role of ATP.

Physiology and Health

In this Unit, learners will develop knowledge and understanding by focusing on the key areas of the structure and function of reproductive organs and gametes and their role in fertilisation; hormonal control of reproduction; the biology of controlling fertility; anteand postnatal screening; the structure and function of arteries, capillaries and veins; the structure and function of the heart; pathology of cardio vascular disease (CVD); blood glucose levels and obesity linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes. By studying these systems, learners will be able to develop their problem solving and analytical thinking skills. Reproduction covers hormonal control and the biology of controlling fertility, including fertile periods, treatments for infertility, contraception, antenatal care and post-natal screening. The Unit also covers relevant tissues and circulation and the pathology of cardiovascular disease, including the impact on society and personal lifestyle.

Neurobiology and Communication

In this Unit, learners will develop knowledge and understanding through the key areas of divisions of the nervous system and parts of the brain; perception and memory as storage, retention and retrieval of information; the cells of the nervous system and neurotransmitters at synapses; communication and social behaviour. The approach is more on function than structure, and covers neural communication and the links between neurotransmitters and behaviour, while considering personal and social citizenship. This approach enables the development of both analytical thinking and problem solving skills in context.

Immunology and Public Health

In this Unit, learners will develop knowledge and understanding through the key areas of non-specific defences; specific cellular defences; the transmission and control of infectious diseases; active immunisation and vaccination and the evasion of specific immune responses by pathogens.

Skills, knowledge and understanding

♦ demonstrating knowledge and understanding of human biology by making statements, describing information, providing explanations and integrating knowledge

♦ applying human biology knowledge to new situations, analysing information and solving problems

♦ planning and designing experiments/practical investigations to test given hypotheses or to illustrate particular effects

♦ carrying out experiments/practical investigations safely and recording detailed observations and collecting data

♦ selecting information from a variety of sources

♦ presenting information appropriately in a variety of forms

♦ processing information (using calculations and units, where appropriate)

♦ making predictions and generalisations from evidence/information

♦ drawing valid conclusions and giving explanations supported by evidence/justification

♦ evaluating experiments/practical investigations and suggesting improvements

♦ communicating findings/information effectively


SQA Higher Human Biology -

Scholar Website (please see teacher for login details) -