Teaching biology: inspiring students with plant science NE206

Online course with subject knowledge and practical work using plants across the secondary biology curriculum. Co-developed with specialists at SAPS.


Students need to be able to apply their understanding of key biological processes to new contexts, and many students find this difficult. By using plants in your scheme of work, you can give your students additional opportunities to practice this skill.

This course will help you in improving student learning through practical work. Through examples from selected topics you’ll explore approaches to teaching the biology based upon sound pedagogy and share your experience in the classroom with others.

Who is it for?

The course is designed as professional development for teachers of science or biology for 11-16 year olds. Teachers of biology, early career teachers, returning teachers and non-specialist teachers will gain from this course.

What topics are covered?

This course covers:
  • using plant science to tackle misconceptions about respiration
  • making connections across the biology and broader curriculum to support student learning
  • cell division, stem cell biology, cell differentiation and the persistence of totipotency in plant stem cells
  • practicals which can support students understanding of osmosis 

How will you learn?

This course is not facilitated. You can learn independently or with colleagues to directly address your individual needs.

How long is this course?

This course takes around 9 hours to complete and you do not need to be online at any specific time. You can take the course at your own pace.


By the end of this course, you will be able to:
  • modify your scheme of work to incorporate a greater variety of contexts;
  • identify opportunities to challenge students’ preconceptions;
  • explore the use of plants for teaching key biological principles;
  • improve your subject knowledge in plant science.



Scheduled courses

Interested in this course?

Sign up to receive our emails to hear about the latest CPD available


Share this