Biology is truly amazing as it is the science of life and therefore a subject that every single human being can relate to. Many are continually fascinated by our race, including how it all began for humans. Biology explores the wonders of life, such as childbirth, but also draws attention to the dangers of things like drugs.
As such Biology is a very good lesson about the human body, how it functions and how to protect it. Students of Biology will not only learn about the human body, they will also put into context our place in the environment, how organisms rely on one another to co-exist on our planet and will also discover the natural food chain, distinguishing predators from prey.
If, after reading the above, you are already inspired to get stuck into your Biology lessons, then keep reading to find out what more you can expect from the course!
With many tests and experiments waiting for them, Biology students can benefit from acquiring practical skills through hands on work. They will be encouraged to not only study how Biology works, but how elements of the science can be used to solve problems.
No matter how good you are at the subject, a course in Biology will enhance your knowledge of biological concepts, highlight some of the biggest scientific breakthroughs and is a great subject to have for a number of careers. You will pick up a range of useful scientific vocabulary along the way too.
In addition, it teaches pupils many basic lessons about life, like how to care for your personal hygiene, what happens to your body parts during the course of drug or alcohol abuse, and much, much more.
Biology, along with the other sciences, is the foundation for building a career in the health sector or as a scientist, but is also useful to many other jobs. Pharmacists, zookeepers, microbiologists and many more professionals will have benefited from the content learned through their Biology studies.
Dont forget, you don’t have to pursue a career in medicine though, you might decide to become a Science Teacher or even to be a writer in the field of Biology. Furthermore, Biology can be helpful if you work in a company linked to food or drink, as you learn about food enzymes and fermentation.
You don’t need to be a Biology student or expert scientist for Biology to have a place in your life – science, including Biology, is all around us! While many associate the Sciences with things that happen within a hi-tech lab, the truth is that biological processes and findings affect our day-to-day existence and, to some extent, help to keep us alive. Biology even shares links with the creative arts!
If you still don’t believe it, consider how you could live without groceries, clean clothes, heating and other creature comforts? Yes, that’s right, all of these normal parts of life are influenced in some way by the innovations of Science. Let’s take a look specifically at how Biology plays its part in shaping our daily lives.
Food is a necessity of life. Not just because we enjoy consuming it, but because it is the fuel that helps to keep our bodies functioning.
As you will no doubt know, there are some foods that are more beneficial than others, but even those basic items in our shopping basket wouldn’t be there for the picking if it weren’t for biological processes.
Take milk and bread, for example. When you sit down to eat your breakfast before school, do you every wonder how the milk you pour onto cereal comes to become bottled milk, or how the flour ultimately produces the loaf of bread you are spreading your butter and jam on?
In order to produce milk, dairy cows must feed on plants. Photo credit: StoiKNA via Visual Hunt / CC BY-ND
In order for cows to produce the milk that is so essential to our diets, they must in turn be healthy and feed on plants. For this, we have the process of photosynthesis to thank.
It also goes without saying that milk production is highly influenced Biology because, in order to produce the required amount of milk for a diary cow, the animal must birth at least one calf per year. Once a dairy cow has produced for around three years, they are then culled and their meat used for beef in our butchers and shops.
Furthermore, the biological process of fermentation is what makes a wheat-flour bread dough.
During bread making, bakers use yeast to produce the carbon dioxide needed for the bread to rise. Yeast is a single-celled, microscopic fungus that feeds on sugar and is essential in the process of making bread as well as brewing alcohol. As such, this biotechnology has a big impact on the way we eat and drink.
But bacterial enzymes aren’t just linked to the food chain. Our daily chores can also benefit from the power of these microbes, for instance with manufacturers putting them in detergents to break down dirt and stains in our laundry.
Imagine not having the luxury of clean clothes to wear every day. Until scientists discovered ways to produce biological detergents, many would have had to wash clothes with far less effective products and formulas, never knowing whether they had fought off all of the bacteria that had become embedded in their clothing and sheets.
Laundry detergents contain enzymes adapted to living in hot environments and these enzymes break down protein, fat and starches found in stains and dirt, including food stains, sweat, mud and grass, among others.
Special washing powders have also been developed to help tackle colour fading or to make whites look brighter which, although don’t have a direct impact on cleanliness, do aid in making your clothes last longer.
Biology helps us keep our clothes clean and lasting longer. Photo via Visualhunt.com
Would you ever have believed that putting the washing on could be so educational? Now there really is no excuse not to do your share of the chores, as doing so can be like getting on with revision!
So, next time you are watching television and there’s a break in your favourite TV programme with adverts about Vanish and other such products, you can think of all of the scientists behind the scenes working tirelessly to find new and advanced ways to improve your clothing hygiene!
Biotechnology also encompasses the production of products to improve our lives by preventing illness and disease, such as vaccines, allergy shots and tests to screen blood donors for infectious agents.
Also known as Biologics, biological products are made from a range of natural, most commonly human and animal cells or microorganisms. The main advantage of these medical products are to either diagnose or prevent diseases and illness.
If you are one of the many who receive a flu jab every year or if you have vaccinations coming up (like the 3-in-1 teenage booster which protects against tetanus, diphtheria and polio), then you can be thankful to the biological research that has been carried out in past decades to come up with such preventative measures in keeping your health up.
Biological research has enabled the health sector to provide vaccinations against illnesses, like the common flu jab. Photo credit: NHSE via Visualhunt.com / CC BY
Last but not least, you may not realise just how reliant we are on Biology in our homes. Although the use of renewable energy is on the rise, we are still using up fossil fuels to provide us with heat, such as oil and coal.
These fuels are the remnants of living organisms that graced our planets hundreds of millions of years ago, which are turned into energy sources like oil, natural gas and coal. Now that we are so much more aware of the dangers of carbon dioxide though, which is released as waste from these fossil fuels, humans are now investigating new Eco-friendly sources such as solar power with lots of homeowners opting for solar panels on their roofs.
During the course of your Biology studies, you will no doubt learn about efficiency within the home, which is becoming more and more of a focus for homeowners due to the large environmental footprint that traditional heating sources leave.
Thanks to solar energy for heating, insulated walls, double or triple-glazed windows and airtight spaces for retaining this heat, many houses are now able to conserve energy instead of creating additional energy and thus cause less overall waste.
Learn more about some of the most outstanding biology discoveries.