This is an examination syllabus drawn up from the curricula of the member countries of the West African Examinations Council. It should be used alongside the appropriate teaching syllabus(es) of the country where the candidates are domiciled.

This examination syllabus is divided into three sections: Sections A, B and C. Section A is for all candidates, Section B is for candidates in Ghana only and Section C is for candidates in Nigeria, Sierra Leone The Gambia and Liberia.


This syllabus is designed to assess candidates’
1 . understanding of the structure and functions of living organisms as well as appreciation of nature;
2. acquisition of adequate laboratory and field skills in order to carry out and evaluate experiments and projects in Biology;
3. acquisition of necessary scientific skills for example observing, classifying and interpreting biological data;
4. acquisition of the basic relevant knowledge in Biology needed for future advanced studies in biological sciences;
5. acquisition of scientific attitudes for problem solving;
6. ability to apply biological principles in everyday life in matters that affect personal, social, environmental, community health and economic problems;
7. awareness of the existence of interrelationships between biology and other scientific disciplines.


There will be three papers: Papers 1, 2 and 3, all of which must be taken. Papers 1 and 2 will be a composite paper to be taken at one sitting.


Will consist of fifty multiple-choice objective questions drawn from Section A of the syllabus (the section of the syllabus which is common to all countries). It will carry 50 marks and last for 50 minutes.


Will consist of six essay questions drawn from the entire syllabus. The paper will be put into three sections, Sections A, B and C.

Section A:

Will consist of four questions drawn from Section A of the syllabus.

Section B:

Will be for candidates in Ghana only and will be drawn from Section B of the syllabus (ie the section of the syllabus perculiar to Ghana). It will consist of short-structured questions.

Section C:

Will be for candidates in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and Liberia and will be drawn from Section C of the syllabus (ie the section of the syllabus containing material for those countries only). It will also consist of short-structured questions.

Candidates will be expected to answer two questions from Section A and all the short-structured questions from either Section B or Section C.

Each question in Section A will carry 20 marks while the compulsory short-structured questions in Sections B and C will carry 30 marks. The total score will be 70 marks. The paper shall take 1 hour 40 minutes.


Will be a practical test (for school candidates) or a test of practical work (for private candidates) lasting 2 hours and consisting of three sections: Sections A, B and C.

Section A:

This will consist of two compulsory questions drawn from Section A of the syllabus, each carrying 25 marks.

Section B:

This will be for candidates in Ghana only. It will consist of one question drawn from Section B of the syllabus and will carry 30 marks.

Section C:

This will be for candidates in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and Liberia. It will consist of one question drawn from Section C of the syllabus and will carry 30 marks.

Candidates will be expected to answer all the questions in Section A and one question in either Section B or C. The paper will carry a total score of 80 marks.



(For all candidates)

A. Concept of Living

1. Classification

(a) Living and non-living things
Classification of objects into living and nonliving, giving examples of each group.

Viruses should be mentioned as a link between living and non living things.
(b) Classification of livingthings into Kingdoms:
Monera, Protoctista (Protista), Fungi, Plantae, Animalia.
Kingdom Monera (Prokaryotes), singlecelled, motile or non-motile organisms without definite nucleus e.g. bacteria and blue-green algae.

Major characteristics of the major phyla of Kingdoms Protoctista and Fungi.

Kingdom Protista (Eukaryotes), single-celled, motile or non-motile organisms.

Cell structure complex with definite nucleus e.g. Chlamydomonas, Amoeba.

Major phyla of Kingdom Protoctista include: Rhizopoda, Zoomastigina, Apicomplexa, Ciliophora, Euglenophyta, Oomycota, Chlorophyta, Rhodophyta and Phaeophyta.

Kingdom Fungi (Eukaryotes), mainly nonmotile organisms composed of hyphae containing nuclei e.g. moulds, mushrooms and Rhizopus.

Major phyla of Kingdom Fungi include: Zygomycota, Ascomycota and Basidiomycota.

Kingdom Plantae (Eukaryotes), mainly multicellular non-motile organisms which contain chlorophyll that enable them to photosynthesize e.g. mosses, ferns, pines, oil palms and yam plants.

Characteristics of the major divisions and classes: Bryophyta (Hepaticae, Musci), Lycopodophyta, Filicinophyta, Coniferophyta, Cycadophyta and Angiospermophyta (Monocotyledoneae and Dicotyledoneae).

Kingdom Animalia (Eukaryotes), multicellular motile organisms that feed on other organisms e.g. corals, worms, insects, snails, fishes, frogs, snakes, monkeys cows. Characteristics of the major phyla and classes of Kingdom Animalia.

The external features of the following organisms should be mentioned: cockroach, butterfly, Tilapia, toad/frog, lizard, domestic fowl/pigeon.
(c) Differences between plants and animals.The examples should be used to illustrate differentiation and specialization in organisms.
2. Organization of life
(a) Levels of organization
(i) cell (single-celled organisms):
Amoeba, Euglena, Paramecium
(ii) Tissue: Hydra
(iii) Organ (storage organ) bulb, rhizome and heart.
(iv) System/Organ System: In mammals, flowering plants - reproductive system, excretory system etc.
The examples should be used to illustrate differentiation and specialization in organisms.
(b) Complexity of organization in higher organisms:
advantages and disadvantages.
The significance of different levels of organization including volume/surface area ratio should be mentioned.
3. Forms in which living cells exist:
(a) Single and free-living:
Amoeba, Paramecium, Euglena, and Chlamydomonas

(b) Colony: Volvox

(c) Filament: Spirogyra

(d) Part of a living organism:
Cheek cells, onion root tip cells and epidermis of fleshy leaves.
The structure of these organisms in relation to the forms of existence should be studied to illustrate dependence and interdependence.

Distinguish groups of cells that form tissues from those that form colonies or filaments.
4. Cell components.
(a) Cell structure and functions of cell components.

(b) Similarities and differences between plant and animal cells.
Cell structure should include: Cell wall, cell membrane, nucleus, cytoplasm, cytoplasmic organelles: mitochondria, lysosomes, chloroplasts, endoplasmic reticulum, ribosomes, centrosomes, Golgi bodies, chromosomes. The function performed by organelles should be known.
5. The Cell and its environment: Physical and Biophysical processes.
(a) diffusion

(b) osmosis

(c) active transport
The significance of these processes should bementioned as factors that affect cell activitiesin its environment.

Haemolysis, plasmolysis, turgidity andcrenation should be mentioned.

These should be mentioned as processesoccurring within living cells.
6. Properties and functions of the living cell.
(a) Nutrition

(i) Autotrophic

(ii) Heterotrophic (holozoic)
Nutrition in Euglena, Chlamydomonas andSpirogyra should be mentioned.

Nutrition in Amoeba and Paramecium shouldbe mentioned.
(b) Cellular respiration
Definition and processes of:
(i) aerobic respiration
(ii) anaerobic respiration
(iii) energy release
A simplified outline of the chemicalprocesses involved in glycolysis and Kreb'scycle; Reference should be made to the roleof ATP.

The importance of anaerobic respiration infood processing should be mentioned.
(c) Excretion
(i) Excretion in single-celled aquaticorganisms. Diffusion by body surfaceand by contractile vacuole.

(ii) Waste products of metabolism.
Reference should be made to carbon dioxide,water and ammonia as examples of waste products.
(d) Growth
(i) Basis of growth - cell division(mitosis), enlargement anddifferentiation.

(ii) Aspects of growth:Increase in dry weight, irreversibleincrease in size and length and increasein number of cells.

(iii) Regions of fastest growth inplants.

(iv) Influence of growth hormones andauxins.

(v) Growth curvatures (Tropisms)
Observation of root tip and shoot tip are required.

Regulation of growth by hormones should bementioned.

Types of tropisms should be demonstrated.

Microscopic examination of the different regions of growth and development: region ofcell division, elongation, differentiation and maturation.

Processes that result in primary and secondary growth.
(e) Development: Enlargement and differentiation.
(f) Movement
(i) Organelles for movement: cilia andflagella,

(ii) Cyclosis.
(g) Reproduction:
Types of reproduction.
(i) Asexual: fission, budding and vegetative propagation.

(ii) Sexual: Conjugation, formation ofmale and female gametes(gametogenesis), fusion of gametesfertilization)
Prepared slides of:
(a) fission in Paramecium

(b) budding in yeast and Chlamydomonas;should be observed and drawn.

Prepared slides of conjugation inParamecium and Spirogyra should bestudied. The process of meiosis should bementioned.
7. (a) Tissues and supporting systems: Skeleton and supporting systems in animals:
(i) Biological significance.

(ii) Skeletal materials, e.g. bone,cartilage and chitin.

(iii) Types of skeleton:exoskeleton, endoskeleton andhydrostatic skeleton.

(iv) Bones of the vertebralcolumn, girdles and long bones ofthe appendicular skeleton.

(v) Mechanism of support in animals.

(vi) Functions of skeleton in animals:
Protection, support, locomotion andrespiratory movement.
The location and arrangement of skeletal andsupporting tissues in animals should bementioned. Candidates should be familiar withthe general plan of mammalian skeleton and thedifferent types of joints. They should be able toidentify, draw, label and state the functions ofthe individual bones listed in the contentcolumn. Detailed structure of the skull will notbe required. Histological structure of bones andcartilages will also not be required.

Candidates should be able to explain how thesefunctions are performed. The relationship ofskeleton and muscles during movement shouldbe used to illustrate the different functions ofthe skeleton.
(b) Different types of supporting tissues in plants.
(i) Main features of supporting tissuesin plants.

(ii) Functions of supporting tissues inplants: strength, rigidity (resistanceagainst the forces of the wind andwater), flexibility and resilience.
The different types of supporting tissues:
turgidparenchyma, collenchyma, xylem (wood)sclerenchyma should be studied.

Candidates should be able to cut and draw thelow power of the T.S. of stem and root of aherbaceous plant and label the different tissues;
epidermis, cortex and stele.

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8. Transport System:
(a) Need for transport:
(i) surface area/volume ratio.

(ii) substances have to move greaterdistances.
Source of materials and forms in which they are transported and where they are transported to should be studied.

Media of transport: cytoplasm in cells, cell sapor latex in most plants and body fluid ininvertebrates.
(b) Transport in animals.
(i) Structure of the heart, arteries,veins and capillaries.

(ii) Composition and function ofblood and lymph.

(iii) Materials for transport:excretory products, gases,digested food, and othernutrients.
Candidates should be familiar with the general circulatory system. Open circulatory systems in invertebrates. The names of the blood vessels responsible for transporting excretory products, gases, digested food and other nutrients should be mentioned.
(c) Transport in plants
(i) Uptake and movement of waterand mineral salts in plants.

(ii) Translocation

(iii) Transpiration

(iv) Movement of water to the apex of trees and herbs.
Description of uptake of water and mineral salts from the soil into a plant. Movement of water and mineral salts through the plant.

Experiments using eosin solution to showwater and mineral salts uptake.

Movement of organic materials from leavesto roots.

Basic theories (Pressure flowhypothesis and cytoplasmic streaming)underlying translocation.

Ringing experiment to demonstrate thattransport of synthesized organic nutrients occurs through the phloem.

Advantages and disadvantages oftranspiration.

Types of transpiration.

Environmental factors affecting transpiration.

Determination of the rate of transpiration.

Physiological factors affecting the rise of water in the xylem:
Root pressure,transpiration, cohesion- tensionmechanism, adhesion, water potentialgradient.

Experiments to measure the rate of transpiration.
9. Respiratory System:
(a) Body surface: cutaneous, gills and lungs.
Characteristics of respiratory surfaces in these systems should be studied. Respiratory organs of insects should be mentioned.

Candidates should be able to observe, draw and label the respiratory organs of a bony fish (e.g. Tilapia) and a small mammal (e.g. rat)
(b) Mechanisms of gaseous exchange in fish, toad, mammals and plants.Respiratory movements in these animals should be mentioned. The mechanisms of opening and closing of stomata should be mentioned.
Excretory Systems and Mechanisms Types of excretory systems: Kidney, stomata and lenticels
Characteristics of excretory organs in these systems should be studied. Candidates should observe, draw and label the excretory organs of a small mammal (e.g. rat).

Explanation of the concept of excretion in plants. Excretory products of plants (water, carbon dioxide, oxygen, alkaloids, tannins, gums, resins and acids) should be mentioned.
11. Regulation of Internal Environment
(a) Kidney: Structure and functions
Osmoregulation, excretion and maintenance ofacid-base balance should be mentioned.
The conditions that affect functions of the kidney such as the water and salt content of the blood, environmental temperature should also be mentioned.

Excretory products such as urea, water, salts, uric acid should be mentioned.
(b) Liver:
Functions of the liver.
Candidates should be able to identify the liver; and its position relative to the gall bladder, bile duct, pancreas, duodenum and stomach.
(c) The skin:
Structure and function.
Candidates should observe, draw and label the mammalian skin. The regulation of internal environment by the skin should be emphasized.
12. Hormonal Coordination
(a) Animal hormones:
Site of secretion, functions and effects of over and undersecretion.
Endocrine glands: pituitary, thyroid, adrenal, pancreas, gonads and their secretions should be mentioned. The stages in the metamorphosis of toad and the role of thyroxine should be mentioned.
(b) Plant hormonesThe effects of auxins on lateral buddevelopment, leaf fall and initiation ofadventitious roots should be mentioned.
Reference to crop harvesting, growth and weedcontrol should be made.
13. Nervous Coordination
(a) The central nervous system
(i) Components of thecentral nervous system

(ii) Parts of the brain and theirfunctions; cerebrum, cerebellum,medulla oblongata, hypothalamusand their functions

(iii) Structure and function of the SpinalCord.
Candidates should be able to locate the position of the brain and spinal cord in a dissected vertebrate and identify the various regions of the brain.
(b) Peripheral Nervous System.
(i) Somatic Nervous System

(ii) Autonomic nervous system.

(iii) Structure and functions of theneurone.

(iv) Classification of neurones.
Functions of the sympathetic andparasympathetic systems only.

Candidates should observe, draw and label aneurone from a slide.
(c) Types of nervous actions
(i) The reflex arc

(ii) Reflex and voluntary actions

(iii) Differences between reflex andvoluntary actions.

(iv) Conditioned reflex and its role onbehaviour.
Afferent (sensory), efferent (motor) and intermediate neurones should be mentioned

Candidates should perform experiments toillustrate reflex actions such as blinking of the eyes, knee jerk and withdrawal of hand from hot objects.

Candidates should be able to enumerate conditioned reflexes such as salivation, driving a car, walking and swimming.
14. Sense Organs: Structure and function of the
(a) Eye.
Candidates should examine the mammalian eye noting the shape, colour and positions of the optic muscle and optic nerve.

Mention should be made of eye defects and their corrections.
(b) Ear.
15 (a) Reproductive system of mammals
(i) Structure and function of male andfemale reproductive systems.

(ii) Differences between male and femalereproductive organs.

(iii) Structure of the gametes(sperm and ovum)

(iv) Fertilization, development of theembryo and birth.

(v) Birth control
Candidates should examine and draw dissected male and female small mammals showing the reproductive organs. They should also draw sperm and ovum from prepared slides.
(b) Metamorphosis in insects, life histories of butterfly and cockroach.Explanation of the different methods of birth control.

These examples should be used to illustrate complete and incomplete metamorphosis. The period it takes to develop from egg to adult should be studied. The different stages in the life history of butterfly and cockroach should be drawn and labelled.
(c) Comparison of reproduction in fish, amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal.Reference should be made to the method of fertilization, number of eggs and parental care.
(d) Reproduction in flowering plants
(i) Arrangements of floral parts of anamed insect-pollinated flower and anamed wind-pollinated flower.

(ii) Structure and function of the male and female parts of a flower.
(e) Pollination in Plants
(i) Types of pollination

(ii) Features of cross-pollinated and selfpollinated flowers

(iii) Agents of Pollination

(iv) Kinds of placentation: axile, marginal and parietal.
Named examples should be used to illustrate the types of pollination.

The features of the flower should be related to the agents of pollination.
(f) Process of development of zygote in flowering plants:
Pollen grains germinated in sucrose solution should be observed, prepared slides or charts showing various stages of embryo development in flowering plants should be observed and drawn.
(g) (i) Types of fruits (classification).

(ii) Structure of fruits
Fruits should be classified into dry and fleshy fruits.

The internal structure of a leguminous fruit, orange, maize and tomato should be examined and drawn.
(h) Dispersal of fruits and seeds: Agents of dispersalThe following fruits should be studied as examples to show the features that aid their respective methods of dispersal. Sunflower (achene) Combretum, cotton, Crotalaria/bean, Desmodium, Bidens sp. Tridax sp. and Coconut.

Distinguishing differences between a fruit and a seed should be mentioned.

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B. Plant and Animal Nutrition

1. Plant Nutrition

(a) Photosynthesis:
(i) Process of photosynthesis and itschemical equation

(ii) Light and dark reactions

(iii) Materials and conditionsnecessary for photosynthesis

(iv) Evidence of photosynthesis
Biochemical nature of photosynthesis, photoactivation of chlorophyll resulting in the conversion of light energy to ATP and the reduction of NADP (Biochemical detail is not required)

The translocating and storage of excess food as a result of photosynthesis should be mentioned. Test for starch in green leaves should be carried out.

Fate of the products of photosynthesis should be mentioned.
(b) Mineral requirement of plants
(i) Mineral nutrition:
Macro andmicro-nutrients

(ii) Soil and atmosphere as sources ofmineral elements.
Macro elements should include:
carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, sulphur, calcium and iron.

The micro elements should include:
copper, manganese, zinc and boron.

Candidates should distinguish between food produced and mineral elements.
2. Animal Nutrition
(a) Food substances; classes and sources
Local examples as sources of food substance should be given.
Reference should be made to food relationship between plants and animals.
(b) Balanced diet and its importanceImportance of each class of food in a balanced diet should be stressed. Candidates should relate the idea of balanced diet to their own diet.

Malnutrition and its effects on humans should be mentioned.
(c) Food testsTests for starch, reducing sugar, protein, fats and oil should be carried out.
(d) Digestive enzymes:
Classes, characteristics and functions
Candidates should perform experiments toshow that ptyalin in saliva changes cookedstarch to reducing sugar.

Candidates should know source, site of action, substrate and effect of each digestive enzyme.

Experiments to show the characteristics ofenzymes, including effects of pH, temperatureand concentration should be carried out.
(e) Modes of Nutrition
(i) Autotrophic: Photosynthesis,

(ii) Heterotrophic: holozoic, parasitic, symbiotic and saprophytic.
Named examples should be used to illustrate different modes of nutrition.
(f) Alimentary System:
Alimentary tract of different animals.
Comparison should be made using dissected named bird and mammal.

Description and functions of parts of thealimentary canal and modification of parts toreflect their digestive functions should bementioned.
(g) Dental FormulaMeaning of dental formula. Determination of the dental formulae of mammals.

Arrangements of teeth in the jaw bones of herbivores, carnivores and of humans.

Importance of dental care in humans.

C. Basic Ecological Concepts

1. Ecosystem:
Components of the ecosystem and sizes

(a) Ecological components:
environment, biosphere, habitat, population, biotic community and ecosystem.

(b) Components of the ecosystem:
Biotic and abiotic
Examples and explanation are required.
2. Ecological factors:
Ecological factors in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems
Importance of ecological factors common toall habitat should be mentioned. Theimportance of ecological factors topopulation of animals and plants should bestressed.
3. Simple Measurement of Ecological Factors.
(a) Physical factors:
Climatic, topographic and gaseous.

(b) Edaphic factors: Chemical and physical composition, moisture content and soil texture.
Candidates should measure some of the ecological factors including humidity, temperature, wind speed, rainfall and light intensity.
4. Food webs and trophic levels
(a) Autotrophs and Heterotrophs

(i) Producers: autotrophs

(ii) Consumers: heterotrophs

(iii) Decomposers
Candidates should be able to classify organisms as producers, consumers and decomposers.

Aquatic and terrestrial producers, consumers and decomposers should be known.
(b) Trophic levels energy relationships
(i) Food chain

(ii) Food web
Candidates should illustrate food relationships in a food chain and food web using specific examples.
(c) Energy flow
(i) Food/Energy relationship in aquatic andterrestrial environment.

(ii) Pyramid of energy and Pyramid ofnumbers.
Non-cyclic nature of energy transfer should be mentioned.

Candidates should be able to construct andexplain pyramid of energy, pyramid ofnumbers and point out the major differencesbetween them.
(d) Decomposition in nature
(i) Decomposers:

(micro and macro-decomposers)(ii) Gaseous products

(iii) Role of decomposers
Candidates should observe demonstrations to show that carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, heat energy are released during decomposition.
5. Ecological Management:
(a) Biological Associations
Type of associations:
Parasitism,symbiosis, commensalism andsaprophytism.
Features of biological importance associated with each type should be mentioned.
Named examples should be used to illustrate these associations.
(b) Adaptation of organisms to habitats.Adaptations of plants and animals to environmental conditions with particular reference to differences in habitats should be mentioned.
(c) Pollution of the atmosphere
(i) Nature, names, sources and effects of air pollutants.

(ii) Effect of noise
Examples of air pollutants should includecarbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide, oxides ofnitrogen, smoke, smog, dust and particlesreleased into the air from factories.Health hazards and damage to the environmentshould be emphasized.

Harmful effect of noise from generators, aeroplane and electronic sound gadgets, e.t.c. should be mentioned.
(d) Water and Soil Pollution Type and effects of pollutants.Water and soil pollutants to be studied include:
synthetic substances (detergent), insecticides, artificial fertilizers, herbicides, sewage, domestic and industrial wastes, crude oil and decaying organic matter.

The health hazards and harmful effects of water and soil pollutants on organisms should also be mentioned. Mention should be made of oil spillage and its effects.
6. Ecology of populationt:
(a) Ecological succession(i) Structural changes in species composition, variety or diversity and increase in numbers.

(ii) General characteristics and outcomes of succession

(b) Primary succession.

Succession in terrestrial and aquatic habitats.

(c) Secondary succession, climax of the succession:
characteristic of a stable ecosystem.

(d) Factors that affect population size: natality, mortality, emigration, immigration, food shortage, predation,competition and diseases.
Candidates should study succession in anabandoned farmland, lawn, and in a pond over a period of time to discover a definite sequence of colonization by plants.

Reference should be made to population.
(e) Preservation and storage of foodsDescription of various methods of preserving and storing food. The use of ionizing radiations (x-ray, etc) should be mentioned. Explanation of the biological basis of preserving and storing food. Local methods of preserving food such as drying, salting and smoking should be mentioned.
(f) The life of selected insects; (i) Weevils and cotton strainers.

(ii) Control of pests
External features of weevils and cotton stainers, their mode of life, adaptation to their habitats and their economic importance.

Various methods of pest control: physical, chemical biological, etc; and their advantages and disadvantages should be mentioned.
7. Microorganisms: Man and health:
(a) Carriers of microorganisms

(b) Microorganisms in action

(i) Beneficial effects in nature, medicineand industries.

(ii) Harmful effects of microorganisms,diseases caused by microorganisms:

cholera, measles, malaria and ring worm.
Effects of micro-organisms on our bodiesshould be mentioned.

Examples of carriers: housefly; mosquitoes;tsetsefly should be mentioned.

Candidates should perform experiments onfermentation, curdling of milk etc. to illustrate the beneficial uses of microorganisms.
(c) Towards better Health
(i) Methods of controlling harmfulmicroorganisms: high temperature,antibiotics, antiseptics, high salinity anddehydration.

(ii) Ways of controlling the vectors.
The diseases should be studied with respect to the causative organisms, mode of transmission and symptoms.

Effects of these methods on the microorganisms should be mentioned.

Methods of controlling housefly and mosquito should be studied.
(d) Public Health:
The importance of the following towards themaintenance of good health practices:
(i) Refuse and sewage disposal.

(ii) Immunization, vaccination and inoculation (control of diseases).
Candidates should be familiar with the proper methods of carrying out these public health practices in their community.

Various forms of immunization should be mentioned.

Explanation of the terms immunization, vaccination and inoculation.

Candidates should be able to show how these terms are related.

D. Conservation of Natural Resources:

1. Resources to be conserved: soil, water, wildlife, forest and minerals.

The meaning and need for conservation ofnatural resources should be mentioned.

Problems of conservation should be mentioned in relation to economic and social development, overgrazing and poaching.
2. Ways of ensuring conservation
The following should be studied:
(a) agencies responsible for conservation

(b) conservation education

(c) conservation laws

(d) benefits of conservation.

E. Variation in Population:

1. Morphological variations in the physical appearance of individuals

(a) size, height and weight
Variation can be classified into morphological and physiological or continuous and discontinuous.

Candidates are required to measure heights and weights of pupils of the same age group and plot graphs of frequency distribution of the height and weight.
(b) colour (skin, eye, hair coat of animals)Observe and record various skin colour, colour pattern of some animals (cow, goat, rabbits), colour pattern of plants (maize cob and leaves).
(c) finger printsMake finger prints and classify them into arches, loops, whorls and compounds.
2. Physiological Variations

(a) Ability to roll tongue

(b) Ability to taste
phenylthiocarbamide (PTC)

(c) Blood groups (ABO) classification)

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F. Biology of Heredity (Genetics):

1. Genetic terminologies

Definition of the following basic geneticterms such as gene, genotype, phenotype,dominant, recessive, allele, locus, test cross, and back cross.
2. Transmission and expression of characteristics in organisms.

(a) Hereditary variation

(b) Mendel's work in genetics

(i) Mendel’s experiments

(ii) Mendelian traits

(iii) Mendelian laws
Reference should be made to characters that can be transmitted from generation togeneration such as colour of skin, eye, hair,blood group, sickle cell, shape of face andnose.

Mendel's experiment with red and whiteflowered peas should be mentioned.

Mendel’s experiment on monohybrid anddihybrid inheritance should be mentioned.

Reference should be made to dominant and recessive characters in plants and animals.
3. Chromosomes: The basis of heredity

(a) Structure

(b) Process of transmission of hereditary characters from parents to offspring.

Candidates should observe chromosomes inpermanently prepared slides of cells and roottips of onion or lily. Candidates should study the structure of DNA and gene replication using models and charts.
4. Probability in genetics (Hybrid formation).

Segregation of genes at meiosis andrecombination at fertilization should be used to explain the process of transmission of hereditary characters from parents to offspring.

Computation of probability is not required.
5. Linkage, sex determination and sex linked characters.

Explanation of the terms linkage, sexdetermination and sex linked characters such as haemophilia, colour blindness, baldness and hairy ear lobes.
6. Application of the principles of heredity in:

(a) Agriculture
Data on cross-breeding experiments should be studied.

Examples of new varieties of crops andlivestock obtained through cross-breedingshould be mentioned. The advantages anddisadvantages of cross-fertilization, out andinbreeding should be explained.
(b) MedicineThe application of knowledge of heredity in marriage counseling with particular reference to sickle cell anaemia and rhesus factor should be mentioned.

G. Adaptation for survival and Evolution:

1. Behavioural Adaptations in Social Animals.

(a) Termites

(b) Bees
Candidates should be able to identify thevarious castes of social insects.

The division of labour in social insects and the roles of different castes should be stressed.

Examples of communication among animals such as contact notes and warning cries should be mentioned.

Reference should be made to basking by lizard, territorial behaviour in birds and lizards and behaviour of other animals under unfavourable conditions-hibernation and aestivation.

The behaviour of an organism as a member of a group and the effect of grouping on the behaviour of an organism should be mentioned.
2. Evolution:

(a) Evidence of evolution.
Candidates are expected to know theevolutionary trends in plants and animals such as from simple to complex structuraladaptations and from aquatic to terrestrialorganisms.

The role of mutation in evolution should bementioned.
(b) Theories of evolutionThe following evidence of evolution should be mentioned: Paleontology (fossil records), comparative biochemistry, geographical distribution, comparative anatomy and physiology, adaptive radiation, comparative embryology and systematics.

The contributions of Lamarck and Darwin to the development of the theory of evolution should be mentioned.


(For candidates in Ghana only)

A. Introducing Biology:

1. Biology as a science of life

The meaning of biology.

Candidates must be able to differentiate between a living thing and an organism.

The two major branches of biology:
Botany and zoology; specialized areas:
bacteriology, molecular biology, histology, cell biology, ecology etc.
2. Procedure for biological work

Description of skills required by biologists in their work.

The scientific method:
Identifyingthe problem, defining the problem,hypothesizing, experimenting, recording,analyzing and concluding. Description offollowing steps for writing report onbiological experiment or investigation: Aim,hypothesis/ scientific framework, materials/drawing of set-up, method, results/observation, discussion and conclusion.
3. Importance of Biology

Application of biology to everyday life. Careers associated with the study of biology.
4. Body symmetry, sectioning and orientation

Description of the following terms:(i) Body symmetry (bilateral and radial)

(ii) Sectioning:
longitudinal andtransverse and vertical

(iii) Body orientation of specimen:
anterior, posterior, lateral, dorsal andventral views).

Distinction between
(i) posterior and anterior views

(ii) dorsal and ventral views

(iii) transverse and longitudinal section

5. The microscope

Examination of simple light, compound lightand stereoscopic light microscopes andidentification of the various parts.

Handling and caring for microscopes.

Use of the light microscope to observeprepared slides.

Techniques involved in the preparation of temporary slides of animal andplant cells.

Mounting varieties of specializedeukaryotic cells.

Drawing of cells as seenunder the microscope.

Resolution and magnification ofmicroscope.

Determination of magnificationof drawings.

Measuring lengths usingcompound light microscope.

Electronmicroscope should be mentioned
6. Biological drawings

Appropriate headings for biological drawings.

Magnification/ size of biological drawings.

Quality of biological drawings e.g. clarity of lines, neatness of labels, labels of biological drawings.

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B. Cell Biology:

1. Movement of substances into and out of cells: Endocytosis and Exocytosis

Explanation of the process of endocytosis (phagocytosis and pinocytosis) and exocytosis.
2. Nucleic acids

Explanation of the term nucleic acid. Types of nucleic acids: Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). Basic chemical differences between DNA and RNA.
3. DNA structure and replication, RNA transcription.

Description of double helix model ofDNA structure by Watson and Crick.Processes of DNA replication and RNAtranscription.
4. Protein synthesis

Description of the process of proteinsynthesis.

The roles of m-RNA, t-RNA,and r-RNA and ribosomes in proteinsynthesis must be emphasized.

Importanceof protein synthesis.

Examples of proteinssynthesized by humans.
5. Cell cycle

Explanation of the of the term cell cycle.

Phases of the cell cycle [Interphase: G + S + G2 phases, Mitosis: M phase (karyokinesis and cytokinesis)].

The processes of mitosis and meiosis and their importance.

Preparation of a squash of onion root tip and observing stages of meiosis under the microscope.

Observing stages of meiosis in plant and animal cells (Permanent slides may be used).

C. Life Processes in Living Things:

1. Amoeba, Paramecium, and Euglena

External structure and life processes ofAmoeba, Paramecium, and Euglena.

Mounting of Paramecium and Euglena underthe compound light microscope.
2. Spirogyra and Rhizopus

Structure of Spirogyra and Rhizopus.Nutrition and reproduction of Spirogyra andRhizopus.

Identification of stages of conjugation of Spirogyra.
3. Mosses and ferns

Structure of mosses (Brachymenium andFunaria) and ferns (Nephrolepis, ( Platycerium, Phymatodes).

Description of external features of mosses and ferns.

Nutrition and reproduction in mosses.

Reproduction in ferns.

D. Diversity of Living Things:

1. Characteristics of some of the orders of Class Insecta

Orders of Class Insecta (OdonataOrthoptera, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera,Hemiptera, Diptera, Isoptera, Lepidoptera,Dictyoptera, and Neuroptera).
2. Identification of organisms using biological keys

Orders of Class Insecta (OdonataOrthoptera, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera,Hemiptera, Diptera, Isoptera, Lepidoptera,Dictyoptera, and Neuroptera).

E. Interactions in Nature:


Identification of mineral salts (Ca2+, Fe2+, Fe3+, Mg2+, K+, SO4-, NO3-, PO4-) in a soil sample. Soil reclamation.

F. Mammalian Anatomy and Physiology:

1. Dissection of a small mammal

The arrangement of internal organs of mammals.

Functions of the internal organs.

Candidates should be able to cut open achloroformed mammal (guinea pig, rat,mouse and rabbit) and draw the internalorgans.
2. Transport:
Structure of the mammalian heart.

Mechanism of the heartbeat: excitation and contractions (SAN, AVN, Purkinge tissue)
3. Cellular respiration:

Determination of respiratory quotient (RQ) of different substrates.

Explanation of the significance of RQ.

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4. Movement:

(a) Muscles
Types of muscle (Smooth, striated and cardiac muscles).

Description of how muscles bring about movement.

Explanation of sliding filament model of muscle contraction.
(b) Skeletal tissuesDescription of the structure of skeletal tissues( Bones and cartilage).
5. Reproduction:

(a) Secondary sexual characteristics
Physical changes that occur in males and females during puberty.

The role of hormones in the development of secondary sexual characteristics in humans.
(b) Prenatal/Antenatal careMeaning of antenatal care.

Antenatal visits requirements. Nutrition and diet.

Exercise during pregnancy.

Benefits of the use of natural products by mother and child.

G. Plant Structure and Physiology:

1. Morphology of monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants.

External features of monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants.

Functions of roots, stems and leaves of monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants.

Differences between monocotyledonous and dicotyledonous plants.

Modifications of roots, stems and leaves.
2. Transport: Guttation

Biological principles underlying guttation.
3. Reproduction: Floral formula

Determination and writing of the floralformulae of the following flowers:
Flamboyant (Delonix), Pride of Barbados(Caesalpinia) and Rattle box (Crotalaria).

Floral diagrams are NOT required.

H. Humans and their Environment:

1. Integrated water resources management.

(a) Drug abuse
Description of the integrated water resources management (IWRM). Explanation of how IWRM can reduce undesirable change in the environment.

Definition of terms: health, hygiene, and sanitation. Means of achieving personal cleanliness/ hygiene.

Explanation of the term drug abuse.

Consequences of drug abuse.
(b) Community healthImportance of town planning and its effects on health of the community.
(c) First AidExplanation of the term drug abuse.

Consequences of drug abuse.

Importance of town planning and its effectson health of the community.

Explanation of the term First Aid.

Different methods of administering First Aid.

I. Evolution:

Recombinant DNA Technology

Explanation of the term Recombinant DNA Technology and state its application.

J. Biology and Industry:

1. Biology and water industry

(a) Contamination of water
Candidates should carry out experiments to test water samples for bacterial contamination.
(b) Identification of polluted waterThe use of Biological Oxygen Demand(BOD) in the measurement of the level oforganic pollution in water.
(c) Waste water treatmentDescription of biological processes ofpurifying sewage.

Cesspit activated sludge process should be mentioned.
2. Biology and fishing industry

(a) Fish stock management
Explanation of why fish is an efficient converter of plankton into flesh.

Description of ways of conserving fish stocks in water bodies.
(b) Fish farmingImportance of fish farming.

Advantages and disadvantages of fish farming.
3. Biology and food industry:
Food additives
Explanation of the term food additives.

Identification of the categories of foodadditives (Naturally occurring and artificial food additives).

Health implications in the use of food additives.
4. Biology and agriculture:
Explanation of the biological principles by which fertilizer, pesticides, selective breeding, resistance to disease and irrigation can respectively lead to successful agriculture.
5. Biotechnology:
Explanation of the concept of biotechnology.

The use of micro-organisms in the manufacture of food such as cheese, yoghurt,kenkey, bread and butter.

The role of microorganisms in the production of alcoholic drinks and organic acids.

The role of microorganisms in pharmaceutical, tanning and mining industries.
6. Biological fuel generation:
Explanation of the need for new sources of energy.

The use of biogas, use of green crops to produce ethanol, the generation of hydrogen gas from chloroplasts should be mentioned

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(For candidates in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and Liberia)

A. Concept of Living:

1. Cell theory

2. Irritability as a basic characteristic of protoplasm
(a) Types of responses: taxis and nastism(b) Environmental factors that evoke responses; temperature, pH etc
The cell theory including the work of Hooke, Dujardin, Schleiden and Schwann should be outlined.
3. Excretory Systems

(a) Diseases of the kidney:
Nephritis, kidney stone and diuresis, Their effects and remedies.

(b) Diseases of the liver: infectivehepatitis, cancer of the liver and gallstones. Their effects and remedies.
Excretory organs of earthworm and insects should be mentioned.
4. Sense organs.

(a) Nose.

(b) Tongue.

(c) The skin.
The process of perception of smell including theroles of sensory cells in nose and olfactorylobes should be studied.

Experiments should be carried out to determinethe different areas of the tongue associated withdifferent tastes. The association between theorgans of taste and smell should be mentioned.Mention should be made of taste buds.

The function of the skin as a sensory organshould be emphasized.
5. Reproduction

(a) Courtship behaviour in animals:
(i) Pairing

(ii) Display e.g. peacocks

(iii) Territoriality

(iv) Seasonal migration associated with breeding in herrings, eels and birds.

(b) Metamorphosis and life history of housefly.
Courtship pattern in male and female animals and territorialism in lizards should be observed.
(c) Adaptive features in adeveloping animal:
(i) Yolk in egg of fish, toad and birdsfor nourishment

(ii) Placenta in animals
The content (yolk and albumen) of birds' egg should be examined
(d) Germination of seeds:
(i) Essential factors which affect developing embryo.

(ii) Types of germination
Candidates should observe the connection of the foetus to the mother and the adaptive features of the placenta, umbilical cord and amnion in adissected pregnant rat.

The meaning of oviparity and viviparity should be mentioned.

Experiments to show the importance ofoxygen, adequate moisture and suitabletemperature, should be carried out.

The stages in hypogeal and epigeal germination should be observed and drawn

B. Plant and Animal Nutrition:

1. Nitrogen cycle

2. Modes of nutrition:
autotrophic, chemosynthetic, carnivorous plants
3. Alimentary System
(a) Alimentary tracts of different animals

(b) Description and function of various parts.
4. Feeding habits
(a) Categories: Carnivorous, herbivorous and omnivorous

(b) Modifications and mechanismsassociated with the following habits; filterfeeding, fluid feeding, feeding adaptation ininsects, saprophytic feeding, parasitic feedingetc.
The names and roles of bacteria involved in nitrogen cycle should be mentioned.

Candidates to observe root nodules in leguminous plants.

Examples of carnivorous plants should bestudied.

Comparison should be made using dissectedearthworm, grasshopper/cockroach to show theimportant features of the alimentary canal.

Use a bird and cockroach/grasshopper to showmodifications for functionsMosquito larva, housefly, butterfly, cockroach,adult mosquito, maize weevil, rhizopods,tapeworm should be used to illustrate thedifferent types of feeding mechanisms andvarious modifications.

C. Basic Ecological Concepts:

1. Ecological Components:
Lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, niche

2.Population Studies by Sampling
(a) Population size

(b) Dominance

(c) Density
3. Energy transformation in nature:
(a) Energy loss in the ecosystem

(b) Solar radiation: its intake and loss at the earth's surface.

(c ) Energy loss in the biosphere.
Candidates are expected to explain and give examples of the terms.

Candidates are required to carry out a project to determine population density by counting the individual types of plants and animals and record such count in a given plot.

Laws of thermodynamics and its application to ecological phenomena should be mentioned.

The laws of thermodynamics should be used to explain energy flow across tropic levels.

Candidates should discuss energy as a limitingfactor in primary production i.e production ofautotrophs.

Reference should be made to harvest as ameans of measuring primary production.

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4. Nutrient Cycling in Nature
(a) Carbon Cycle:
(i) Process of carbon cycle

(ii) Importance of carbon in nature.
Candidates should be able to draw the carbon cycle, list the sources of carbon (burning,espiration, decay) and discuss the relative importance of the cycle.

Reference should be made to carbon dioxideoxygen balance in nature.

Candidates should carry out experiments toshow absorption of carbon dioxide and release of oxygen during photosynthesis.
(b) Water Cycle:
(i) Importance of water cycle,(ii) Importance of water to livingorganisms

Candidates should carry out experiments to show the presence of water in expired air and that water is given off during respiration.
5. Ecological Management: Tolerance, Minimum and maximum range
Candidates should perform experiments toshow the limit of tolerance of Tilapia to various concentrations of salt solution or sensitivity of wood lice to temperature.

Measurement of physical factors:temperature, salinity, light intensity, turbidity, current, pH, should be carried out.
6. Habitats
(a) Aquatic habitat: marine, estuarine fresh water under the following headings:
(i) characteristics of habitat

(ii) distribution of plants andanimals in the habitat,

(iii) adaptive features of plants andanimals in the habitat.

(b) Terrestrial habitat: marsh, forest, grass land, arid land should be studied under the following headings:
(i) characteristics of habitat

(ii) distribution of plants and animals in habitat.
The pattern of distribution including dominant types and seasonal changes of population, size of organisms in the habitat should be noted.

The measurement of the physical factors,temperature, relative humidity, light, wind,and pH should be carried out.

Reference should be made to edaphic factors.

The effect of physical factors on distributionof plants and animals should be mentioned.

The process by which carnivores maintain aconstant population should be mentioned.

Effects of human activities on ecologicalsystems should be mentioned.
7. Relevance of Biology to Agriculture:
(a) Classification of plants based on life cycle

(b) Effects of agricultural practices on ecology

(i) Bush burning

(ii) Tillage

(iii) Fertilizer

(iv) Herbicide/pesticide

(v) Different farming methods

Candidates should perform experiments toshow the limit of tolerance of Tilapia to various concentrations of salt solution or sensitivity of wood lice to temperature.

Measurement of physical factors:temperature, salinity, light intensity, turbidity, current, pH, should be carried out.
8. Microorganisms: Man and His Health.
(a) Microorganisms around us

(i) Microorganisms in air and water

(ii) Groups of microorganisms: bacteria,

viruses, some algae, protozoa and some fungi.(b) Microorganisms in our bodies and food

(c) Public Health Food hygiene and health organization.
Microorganisms in air, water and expired air should be observed and identified by their colour, pattern of growth and appearance of their colony.

Microorganisms under the finger nails, mouth cavity, expired air, and decomposing food substance should be observed and identified by their colour, pattern of growth, and appearance of colony.

Reference should be made to the roles ofnational and international health organizationsin maintenance of good public health.

D. Application of Variations:

1. Crime detection

2. Blood transfusion

3. Determination of paternity
The uniqueness of each individual's finger print should be mentioned in relation to crime detection.

Reference should be made to importance ofknowledge of blood groups in bloodtransfusion and determination of paternity.

E. Evolution:

1. Adaptation for survival
(a) Factors that bring about competition

(b) Intra and Inter-species competition

(c) Relationship between competition and succession
Reference should be made to the factors such as food, space, water, light and mates which organisms share and form the basis ofcompetition.

The effects of intra-species competitionshould be observed by growing manyseedlings of maize in a small area, while the effects of interspecies competition can be observed by planting many seedlings ofmaize and pepper in a small area.

Candidates should observe competitionand succession on a moistened exposedslice of bread over a period of time.
2. Structural Adaptation for;
(a) obtaining food

(b) protection and defense

(c) securing mates for reproduction

(d) regulating body temperature

(e) conserving water
Candidates should observe examples of organisms that show structural adaptation for obtaining food, escaping from enemies, securing mates, regulating body temperature and conserving water.
3. Adaptive Colouration
(a) Plants and animals

(b) Colouration and their functions
Candidates are required to observe examples of adaptive colouration in plants and animals.

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Facts about Teachers

● ● ● Teachers Are Great No Controversy.

● ● ● Teachers are like candles, they burn themselves to light others.

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Teaching slogans

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