About GCSE Science

Our Edexcel GCSEs in science can be assessed in different ways. Find out more about the routes available for GCSE science. 

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Edexcel GCSEs in science can be delivered through two main routes:

Mixed science route: Core Science, Additional Science, Further Additional Science

Students can take one, two or three science GCSEs by studying Science plus Additional Science plus Further Additional Science. These GCSEs all contain Biology, Chemistry and Physics assessments. They can delay choosing how many GCSEs they will take, perhaps even until after taking their first GCSE in Science at the end of Year 10.

Individual science route: Biology, Chemistry, Physics

Students can take separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The grades they achieve will reflect their performance in individual subjects rather than across the sciences.

The diagram below shows the structure of each science GCSE:  

Diagram showing the structure of each science GCSE

Both routes follow the same curriculum content and are assessed in the same way. To complete any of these GCSEs, candidates must sit three examined units and one controlled assessment unit.

We would expect to see four common sitting patterns:

1. Candidates taking GCSE Science only – these candidates would sit B1, C1, P1 and the controlled assessment for GCSE in Science.

2. Candidates taking GCSE in Science and GCSE in Additional Science – these candidates would sit B1, C1, P1 and the controlled assessment for GCSE in Science, then B2, C2, P2 and the controlled assessment for GCSE in Additional Science.

3. Candidates taking GCSE in Science, GCSE in Additional Science and GCSE in Further Additional Science – these candidates would sit B1, C1, P1 and the controlled assessment for GCSE in Science; B2, C2, P2 and the controlled assessment for GCSE in Additional Science; and B3, C3, P3 and the controlled assessment for the GCSE in Further Additional Science.

4. Candidates taking separate sciences – using Biology as an example, these candidates would sit the B1, B2, and B3 exams, and the Biology controlled assessment unit, using a controlled assessment task from either B2 or B3.