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Cambridge O Level Biology helps learners to understand the biological world in which they live and take an informed interest in science and scientific developments. The syllabus includes the basic principles and concepts that are fundamental to the subject, some current applications of biology, and a strong emphasis on practical skills.
Learners also develop an understanding of the scientific skills essential for progression to Cambridge International AS & A Level, further education or a career related to science.
The syllabus year refers to the year in which the examination will be taken.
We revise our qualifications regularly to make sure that they continue to meet the needs of learners, schools and higher education institutions around the world and reflect current thinking. We have updated this syllabus and all assessment materials so they are clearer and more consistent across the three sciences. This is helpful for teachers who are teaching more than one science syllabus, and students who will enjoy a more coherent experience across each science. Please see the 2023-2025 syllabus document for full details on the changes.
The updated syllabus is for examination from June 2023 onwards. Please see the 2023-2025 syllabus for full details.
We are developing a comprehensive range of materials to help you teach the updated syllabus. These resources will be available from September 2020 onwards (before first teaching) through our School Support Hub and include:
Face-to-face and online training will be available. For up-to-date information, visit our Events and training calendar.
View the latest resource that is being developed by our Endorsement Partner for the Cambridge O Level Biology syllabus (5090).
Cambridge O Level Biology (Hodder Education)
Written by renowned expert authors, our updated resources enable the learner to effectively navigate through the content of the revised Cambridge O Level Biology syllabus (5090).
Read more on the Hodder Education website
Find out more about our competition for Cambridge IGCSE students aged 14-16.
For some subjects, the syllabus states that Grade Descriptions will be made available after first assessment in 2020 or 2021.
Publication of grade descriptions for these syllabuses has been delayed. This is to make sure that grade descriptions reflect examination outcomes appropriately and are based on the full range of candidate performance after the 2020 and 2021 series.
From 2020, we have made some changes to the wording and layout of the front covers of our question papers to reflect the new Cambridge International branding and to make instructions clearer for candidates - learn more.
We provide a wide range of support so that teachers can give their learners the best possible preparation for Cambridge programmes and qualifications. For teachers at registered Cambridge schools, support materials for specific syllabuses are available from the School Support Hub (username and password required).
Sign up for updates about changes to the syllabuses you teach