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Biology: insight4me Biology – Natural Selection Field Research With University of East Anglia & University of Surrey

23rd June 2021 @ 14:15 - 15:15





insight4me is a series of subject specific webinars for current Year 12 & 13 students. The sessions support students’ current studies by giving an insight into particular curriculum areas whilst affording students the opportunity to talk to different universities and make informed comparisons about how, in this case, Biology is taught.

In this insight4me Biology webinar for schools and colleges, University of East Anglia & University of Surrey will each have roughly 30 minutes to deliver a punchy, topic based ‘micro’ talk. Within an overall session theme of Natural Selection Field Research, the universities have the freedom to choose their own topic and use the time to convey the key points of the case studies for the students.

Through the discussion, the universities are encouraged to provide an insight into the teaching and learning experience of this topic at university, and compare and contrast how other subject areas across the Biology spectrum might be treated. Students will gain an insight into how these subjects continue beyond A-levels, T-levels, IB, BTEC and equivalent qualifications.

By hearing from 2 unis, students will also appreciate how the further study of Biology can vary between institutions, contributing to the depth of their HE research and assisting informed decision making.

Full details of the universities and their talks will appear below when available. 

  • University of East Anglia: Dr Ellen Bell from the School of Biological Sciences will present: Natural selection and host-parasite relationships; exploring how evolution shapes the biological arms race between species. Evolution underpins so much of what we see in the field of biology and this is especially true when looking at the relationships between host and parasite species. I will be exploring some of the theoretical aspects of these relationships and then compare theory to observation by examining a recent case study of some research in this field. 
  • University of Surrey: Dr Robert Hatch, Teaching Fellow at the Biosciences Foundation, will present: A Journey Through The Evolution of Humans: How Research into Human Evolution has Changed Over The Last 50 years. 50 years ago, ‘Lucy’ was discovered in Ethiopia.  Her 3 million year old bone structure had many of the features we associate with humans. Was she our ancestor, and what was she like? Her discovery led to the development of several new theories around how humans have evolved, which we will discuss. In recent years, many more human-like skeletons have been discovered. Now, genome sequencing has enabled us to be much more certain about the relatedness between extinct and alive humans and created a whole new series of exciting questions about our recent evolution.


Our events are designed so that a group of students can take part from a classroom or students and teachers can take part as individuals, either from school or from home. This means that sessions will continue irrespective of possible school closures.

As a live, participative event, this session will not be recorded but slides and other resources will be shared after the event, where available.


Suitable for: Year 12 & 13 students (and equivalent) studying, or with a possible interest in studying, Biology and related disciplines.

Preparation/Pre-Reading: Students may wish to consider the 2 topics and discuss some of the key elements in advance. Students can also think about questions they have about studying Biology at university level.

The IT Setup: The event will be run on Bluejeans and participants will be able to join using laptops, tablets, and mobile devices. If you are joining as a school group, we recommend connecting with one device and projecting on to a whiteboard. You will be able to interact with the university via a microphone and/or typed comments and questions. Full details will be sent to those who have registered (see below) prior to the event.

Booking a Place: This is free for schools and colleges. If you would like to take part in this event, please register your interest using the link to the registration form below:



23rd June 2021
14:15 - 15:15
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