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SQA News 19 January 2023

Planned changes to freestanding Biology units at SCQF level 7 from session 2023-24

The units at SCQF level 7 that were previously part of the Advanced Higher Biology course are available as freestanding units. The units are not part of the course hierarchy, and the units and unit assessment support packs were not affected by the changes we made to the to the content of the revised Advanced Higher course in 2019.

However, to support delivering centres, we will update the unit specifications to reflect the content in the current Advanced Higher Biology course. We will also produce new unit assessment support packs. We will generate new codes for the freestanding units at SCQF level 7. These revised unit specifications and unit assessment support packs will be available by the end of June 2023, for delivery from session 2023–24.

Session 2022-23

As the previous course content is currently assessed in the unit assessments, if a centre is delivering a freestanding SCQF level 7 unit(s) in session 2022–23, it is the centre’s responsibility to ensure that all the content of the key areas pertaining to that unit are covered. It would not be feasible to try to adapt the unit assessments to fit the revised content.

If centres are presenting candidates for a freestanding unit(s) at SCQF level 7 in session 2022–23, the requirement to complete outcome 1 for the unit assessment is removed. Teachers and lecturers should still endeavour to develop the practical skills that are a feature of these units.