News Centre

Over 100 Biology Enthusiasts Gather at Sancta Maria College


On March 30, more than 100 NCEA biology students from all over Auckland, gathered in Sancta Maria College’s auditorium to attend a NCEA Level 3 Biology curriculum and scholarship talk.

Dr Alison Campbell, the Associate Dean of Teaching and Learning, as well as a senior lecturer for Biological Science at Waikato University was invited to speak to the students. She had travelled up to Auckland in order to give an insight into NCEA level 3 and scholarship Biology. During her presentation, the students learnt about what they could expect from the scholarship biology papers including the structure of the papers and what skills the students would need to develop. Dr Campbell gave particular emphasis to students being able to think critically and to be able to analyse and evaluate the information provided so they could come to well-reasoned conclusions and solutions.

Dr Campbell also advised students to become widely read in order to gain more knowledge that could be useful for the changing contexts of the scholarship questions. She introduced a wide variety of possible resources that are available to us. A particular resource was her own blog where she frequently posts incredible discoveries within the science spectrum, in order to encourage biology students to think critically about the world. During the talk, Dr Campbell discussed a variety of topics she had previously posted on her blog. One of these is the evolution of humans and how, over time, our ancestors had developed to become bipedal.

Along with Dr Campbell there were also members of the Auckland Museum and Auckland Zoo who brought with them different animal bones for the students to examine. One of these was the body of a taxidermy kiwi. There were also replica skeleton limbs of different animals such as an orangutan, spider monkey and moa for the students to compare with themselves and see the similarities and differences.

Overall, the event was very successful and enabled the students to be able to learn about the key skills they need to do well in scholarship biology. Thank you to Auckland Museum, Auckland Zoo, Dr Allison Campbell from Waikato University and the Auckland Science Teacher Association, as well as the sponsors, Jason from Scipad, Richard from Biozone and Bevan from Education Perfect, for supporting this event. We would also like to thank Mr Williamson for organising this day at the College to allow so many biology students from across Auckland, to gather and further prepare themselves for scholarship biology.

Yuvani Gampalage and Zoe Chou