SSERC are delivering a 2-day course to explore innovative practical activities and investigations that supports the delivery of Advanced Higher Biology. This course is particularly suited to practitioners who are new to delivering the AH Biology course in school. 

The topics to be covered: 

  • Using RasMol to explore protein structure 

  • Counting cells using a haemocytometer 

  • Protein electrophoresis 

  • Microbiology 

  • Chromatography techniques 

  • Colorimetry 

We are now able to offer this as a 2-day course at SSERC (7th and 8th December 2021). This will replace the previously advertised online event (26th October 2021). It should be noted that this is not a residential course; however, for delegates who live more than 50 miles (or 90 minutes on public transport) from SSERC headquarters, overnight accommodation will be provided. 

Places are limited so early applications are advised.  Lunch and refreshments are included in the course fee. 


Applications are welcome from teachers from all schools and FE colleges. Applicants from Local Authority-funded schools and FE colleges will be entitled to receive an ENTHUSE Bursary (administered through the National STEM Learning Centre) upon completion of the course.


 7th – 8th December, 2021

Closing date for applications: 5th November 2021


Course Leader

Annie McRobbie
01383 626070



ENTHUSE Bursary: Local Authority schools and colleges will be able to apply for an ENTHUSE bursary of £320 to help towards covering the course costs.

Course Aims 

This course aims to support the delivery of Advanced Higher Biology with practical, hands-on experiments. 

Course Outcomes 

By the end of this course, you should be able to: 

  • Design biological investigations and experiments for Laboratory Techniques for Biologists. 
  • Carry out complex experiments using a haemocytometer, colorimeter, chromatogram and gel electrophoresis apparatus, encouraging students to record systematic detailed observations and collect data. 
  • Investigate the use of a haemocytometer to determine cell counts. 
  • Explore enzyme activity (including inhibition) using a colorimetric assay of Dopa Oxidase. 
  • Deepen student understanding of protein molecules by exploring protein structure using RasMol, gel electrophoresis of proteins, simple immuno-assays and chromatogram of amino acids. 
  • Consider wider investigations that students could engage in, including determination of the vitamin C concentration of citrus fruits. 
  • Carry out complex microbiological techniques that are applicable to the AH Biology course with appropriate risk awareness and safety precautions. 
  • Explore current research in Scotland in the field of parasitology through guest speakers from research institutes.  

Overnight accommodation will be offered to those delegates who have a sizeable distance to travel on the day before the course.  This will be offered on a B&B rate.

The course will be held at SSERC in Dunfermline. Our SSERC buildings are at 2 Pitreavie Court, Dunfermline, KY11 8UU. SSERC is a short (5-10 minutes) walk from Rosyth railway station and close to the end of the A823(M) spur off Junction 2 of the M90 motorway. Car journey times (approximately): Edinburgh – 30 min; Glasgow – 60 min; Aberdeen – 2.5 hours; Inverness – 3 hours.