Question spotting for IGCSE Biology paper 2

Trying to guess what might come up in paper 2 of public exams is a dangerous business……  But I think it is sensible for Y11 students sitting IGCSE Biology to now focus their remaining revision on topics that have yet to be tested.  You are now two thirds of the way through your exams and a final push to paper 2 might just get you across the A-A* boundary.  Every mark is vital in any exam so keep working hard!

Here are some PMG tips for topic areas that seem a better than average bet for coming up in paper 2:

  • Variety of Living Organisms (5 Kingdom Classification, Viruses)
  • Biological Molecules, especially Enzymes – (graph interpretation question?, effect of temperature and pH on rates of reaction?)
  • Photosynthesis and Respiration (perhaps a question testing bullet points 2.40 and 2.43 on gas exchange in plants over 24 hour period?)
  • Role of White Blood cells in Immunity (perhaps linked in with viruses above, vaccination, memory cells etc.?)
  • Coordination in Humans (nerves, reflex arcs, the eye, homeostasis in the skin, hormones)
  • Reproduction in Flowering Plants (asexual mechanisms plus insect/wind pollination)
  • DNA structure (including mutations), Chromosomes and Cell Division
  • Carbon, Nitrogen and Water Cycles
  • Pollution (atmospheric, water pollution and climate change)
  • Fish Farming (surely they can’t leave this out?…..)

I will post some blog entries on some or all of these topics in the week or two after half term so keep your eyes posted on Twitter or follow this blog.

I am not suggesting that these are the only topics you revise in preparation for paper 2.  That would be very foolish as the examiners can ask questions on anything at all.  I am merely suggesting that you focus your remaining revision time on the topics most likely to come up and the list above might help you to decide what best to do.

Good luck and keep working hard!  Not long to go now……




  1. Adam Lock

    Dear Sir
    Do you think that there will be anything on the transport and gas exchange systems in humans?

    • Paul Gillam

      I’m not sure Adam – it’s a while since I looked at your paper 1. How much was there on this topic in that first exam? I am sure they will try to test this somewhere in the two papers.

      • Adam Lock

        There was a bit on arteries and capillaries and Coronary Heart Disease also there was a question on smoking effecting the alveoli but that was basically it.

      • Paul Gillam

        In that case, I would imagine it is most likely they leave it at that. But I’m not promising (and I’m not an examiner!) If you think you could do with a bit more work on either human transport and gas exchange, I would do it this week. Good luck.

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