IGCSE Biology Trip to the Botanical Gardens
IGCSE biologists learn from Leicester University students about where biology can take them....
A wet and windy Wednesday morning was brightened up for the iGCSE Biology class with a visit to the Botanical Gardens. They were invited to spend the morning with staff and students from the University of Leicester to understand how the breadth and depth of Biology can lead to more than just a career in medicine or dentistry, and open doors to a whole world of career options.It began with a fascinating talk from a Falconer who, whilst explaining how owls and birds of prey were adapted to their environment, actually flew them over their heads. Some of the girls were lucky enough to be able to have a go. All agreed the cutest one was the Tiny Owl, whilst the most majestic was Zeus the Eagle.The girls also got to grips with genetics and learned about the evolution of the stickleback, as well as seeing carnivorous plants in action by looking at how they worked under a microscope.The session that split the camp was probably the ants: should they or should they not have a go at eating one? This session was delivered by two undergraduate biologists, one studying Zoology and one specialising in plant genetics, and was particularly interesting for the girls because, as well as learning about the many different types of ants and their social behaviours, and having the option to eat an ant, (they taste like sherbet lemons by the way!), the girls could quiz the undergrads on what it was like to study biology at university and the types of careers they hoped to go into.
Overall it was a successful visit that left the girls enthusiastic about biology and much more aware of the types of careers that are available with a biology degree.