Bringing Biology to Life

Tiri and Emma are sitting at a table in the classroom, with Biology Teacher Annie Cook standing just behind them, they are all smiling for the camera. On the table in front of them there are various pieces of scientific equipment including petri dishes, goggles and a microscope. In the background there are shelves of books and multi-coloured folders.

Earlier this month our A Level Biology students attended an AIM conference in central London to listen to leading Professors from top UK Universities talk about their specific areas of biology. Students from RNC (Royal National College for the Blind) made the three hour train journey for three very different seminars which really helped bring biology to life.


The conference was headlined by BBC Science Presenter Lord Robert Winston who spoke about fertility and genetics. RNC Biology Teacher Annie Cook explained “It was really useful for our students studying A Level, but also looking forward towards their study in Higher Education. There were videos about reproduction and the magical moment that an egg split into two. Although it was very visual, there were clear explanations from the beginning.”


British Heart Foundation Professor Steve Humphries talked about the risk factors associated with heart disease. RNC student Tiri, who plans to study science at university, said “There are so many factors which are used to determine people with higher and lower risk of heart disease and Steve went on to talk about the nature versus nurture debate, it was fascinating.”


The final speaker was Plant Sciences Professor Beverley Glover who explained ‘why plants are not boring’. RNC student Emma excitedly recalled “Plants definitely aren’t boring! We learned all about the tactics that plants use to get what they need, how they attract different insects using pretty colours etc. I just find the processes of different living things really interesting.”


At RNC we understand that what happens outside the classroom can put things into context and inspire even more engagement in lessons and, as Biology Teacher Annie Cook explains, “We’re just starting to learn about cell division and we will be focussing on heart disease after Christmas so the content of the seminars was spot on, the speakers were excellent and had the girls asking lots of insightful questions!”


If you are interested in studying Biology or any of our other courses on offer at RNC, please call our student enquiries line on 01432 376 621 or email


Article written by Bik Lee, Digital Media Officer at RNC


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