Biology National 5

What is special about this course?

National 5 Biology is recognised as a supporting qualification for many institutions offering Teacher Training, Health and Social Care and Sport courses. This online course is ideal for anyone wishing to develop their interest and enthusiasm for biology in a range of contexts.

Providing you with a good foundation for progression to Higher Biology or Higher Human Biology, this course will:

  • help you understand how the world around you functions
  • cover major areas of biology ranging from cellular to whole organism and includes the study of ecosystems
  • develop scientific inquiry and investigation skills by investigating the applications of biology 
  • cover the key areas of biodiversity and interdependence along with the processes leading to evolution as well as food security and ethical issues.

The skills developed throughout the course will enable you to become scientifically literate citizens and be able to review the science-based claims you meet.

Special features:

  • You can study part time alongside your employment or another full-time course.
  • Covers all the content of the National 5 course, in preparation for the exam which takes place in May
  • Recognised as a supporting qualification for many institutions.

Entry requirements

No formal entry requirements however a National 4 in a science subject may be beneficial.

Course content includes:

Cell biology
The key areas covered are: cell structure; transport across cell membranes; DNA and the production of proteins; proteins; genetic engineering; respiration.

Biology: multicellular organisms
The key areas covered are: producing new cells; control and communication; reproduction; variation and inheritance; transport systems — plants; transport systems — animals; absorption of materials.

Biology: life on Earth
The key areas covered are: ecosystems; distribution of organisms; photosynthesis; energy in ecosystems; food production; evolution of species.


You will be required to purchase a National 5 Biology textbook (approx £24) and a scientific calculator (approx. £10). If you are eligible for a bursary these costs will be covered.

How will I study my course?

  • Part Time
  • Online

You will study online through our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) with support from your lecturers, however you will be required to attend a prelim, an exam and a practical assignment which is spread over 3 to 4 days in the evenings.

How long will my course last?

1 Year

Course cost: £352

Online Part time or Face to face (Wednesdays)

Where can I study my course?

    • UHI Moray

Start date



If you are studying part time and are on low income or in receipt of certain benefits your course fees may be covered by a fee waiver.

If you are not Ordinarily Resident in Scotland, you may need to pay course fees.

Please refer to our Fees and Funding section for more information.


Our Student Finance Advisers can advise you on all aspects of student funding. The support available depends upon your personal circumstances.
Please refer to our Fees and Funding section for more information.

Additional costs

If you are studying part time and are on low income or in receipt of certain benefits your course fees may be covered by a fee waiver.

What can I do on completion of my course?

Successful completion of this course provides an exit pathway to employment in a laboratory.

Alternatively, you can progress onto the following programmes: 

  • Any Science subject at Higher Level
  • Laboratory Science at SCQF Level 6 
  • A Foundation Apprenticeship such as Food Manufacturing or Scientific Technologies 

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Biology National 5

I want to start in 2024/25

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI Moray. UHI Moray operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.