Tried and trusted;Secondary;Reviews;Science;Books

10th September 1999 at 01:00
ADVANCED MODULAR SCIENCE:Applied Plant and Animal Biology. By John Adds, Erica Larkom and Ruth Miller. Nelson pound;12.99.

MICRO-ORGANISMS AND BIO-TECHNOLOGY. By John Adds, Erica Larkom and Ruth Miller. Nelson pound;10.99. TOOLS TECHNIQUES AND ASSESSMENT IN BIOLOGY. By John Adds, Erica Larkom, Ruth Miller and Robin Sutton. Nelson pound;12.99.

When I recently returned to teaching A-level biology after a prolonged child-rearing gap in my career, I searched for a rock to hold on to and a compass to guide me. The Advanced Modular Science series - which has been brought out over the past two years - provided just whatI needed.

Although it is specifically designed to accompany the Edexcel (London Examination) modular syllabus it could be used selectively with most courses of this type These are the last three books in a seriesof seven.

The authors make up a powerful array of two Edexcel chief examiners, a former subject officer and a Field Studies Council tutor. This instils a feeling of confidencein students and teachers alike, knowing that t`he material is relevant and at the right standard.

Each of the first six volumes covers a single module so itcan be used individually oras part of a series. The books are all modern, stimulating and attractive with colour illustrations throughout.The concise and clear text includes relevant practical schedules and examination questions with markschemes.

Tools Techniques and Assessment in Biology isthe last of the series. It is an informative instructionmanual for students, produced in black and white - presumably to reduce cost. It covers all the techniques required at A-level ranging from drawing microscopeslides to planning inves-tigations and analysingresults. Fieldwork studies, statistics and modern advances such as data logging and DNA analysis are included.

The final chapter aims to improve examination performance. It teaches students to revise sensibly and covers the "dos" and "don'ts" when answering different types of questions.

I would certainly recommend this series. The slim volumes are light and easy to carry yet readily impart knowledge, encourage learning and instil confidence.

What more can one ask for?

Diana Hudson teaches biology at Wycombe Abbey School, Buckinghamshire

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