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NABTEB BIOLOGY SYLLABUS
The content of this syllabus has been drawn from the NBTE curriculum. It is divided into broad headings on the conceptual frame work on which the teaching syllabus is organized; the concepts of Biology, Flowering plants and Non-Flowering Plants, Invertebrates and Vertebrates, Basic Concepts of Ecology, Genetics and Evolution. An attempt has been made in this syllabus to make it relevant for candidates offering Biology either as a core science subject or as a trade related course.
Recommended: Nabteb syllabus for all subjects
AIMS: The aims of the syllabus are to:
- Ensure that candidates acquire meaningful and relevant knowledge in Biology;
b. Develop reasonable and functional scientific attitudes in the candidates;
c. Develop adequate laboratory and field skills such as observation, precision, classification
and interpretation of biological data;
d. Prepare candidates for professional training in biological sciences;
e. Create an awareness in the candidates of the application of science principles in everyday life on matters that affect personal, environmental, community health and socio-economic spheres of life.
There will be two papers. Paper 1 (Objective and Essay) and Paper 2 (Practical), both of which must be taken with a total of 200 marks.
06-1 Paper 1 (Objective and Essay)
This paper consists of two sections: A and B.
Section A consists of fifty (50) multiple-choice objective questions, for a duration of 50 minutes and it carries 50 marks.
Section B consists of six (6) essay questions drawn from the four sections of the syllabus. Candidates will be expected to answer four questions in 1 1„2 hours and the total score is 50 marks.
06-2 Paper 2 (Test of Practical)
This paper will consist of two sections A and B. The total duration is 2 hours.
Section A: This section comprises 15 short structured questions based on Biological Principles and Practicals. Candidates are to spend 30 minutes and it carries 30 marks.
Section B: This section consists of 4 practical questions. Candidates are expected to spend 1 1„2 hours and it carries 70 marks.
Note: Test of Practical paper will be conducted as an alternative paper to real practical for private candidates during the November/December series. It will consist of two sections: A and B and will lasts for 2 hours for a total of 100 marks.
|1.||Concept of Biology |
1.1 Explain Biology as a science.
|1. Define science|
2. Biology as a branch of science.
3. Importance of Biology to man.
4. Procedures in scientific methods. 5. The contributions of Robert Hooke,Theodore Schwann, Mathias Scheiden, Carl Linnaeus and Gregor Mendel to the growth of Biology.
|The teacher should use charts, pictures and possibly films to demonstrate scientific procedures. Pictures to show scientists and possibly films to demonstrate scientific procedures.|
|2.||The Scope of Biology |
1.1 Explain the scope of Biology
1.2 Explain the inter- relationship of various branches of Biology.
|Take students out on field trips to observe plants and animals in their natural habitat. Lead students to detect relationship and inter- dependence among them.|
|3.||General Characteristics of living and non-living things.|
3.1 Explain the generalconcept of living and non-living things.
representatives of major groups of plants and animals (Schizophyta) e.g. Bacillus bacterium protozoa e.g. Amoeba
|Classify things in the classroom, school compound and school garden into living, non- living and dead things.|
Properties that qualify virus as living and non- living things should be emphasized.
|Plants and Animals |
1.1 Explain the differences between plants and animals.
|* Use simple micrsope to observe the structure of euglena.|
* The teacher should use chart to illustrate the main features of Euglena. * The teacher
|should tell the students to observe a named plant and a named animal in the school compound.|
|5.||Diversity Among Living Things.|
Classify plants and animals
|* Identify different classes of plants e.g. unicellular, non vascular and vascular and vascular plants and non-flowering plants.|
* Identify the two main classes of animals e.g. vertebrate ad invertebrate animals.
* Collect plant and animal specimens from the immediate environment and name them. Classify them.
1.1 Identify the parts of a microscope. State its functions and maintenance.
|1. Parts of a microscope|
2. Functions of each part of themicroscope.
3. Maintenance of microscope.
|* Students should draw and label a compound microscope.|
* Prepare wet/temporary mounts. Observe under low power magnification.
|7.||Cells as Basic Units of Living Things. |
1.1 Outline the differences between plants and animals cells.
|1. Plant and animal cells.|
2. Distinctions between plant andanimal cells.
3. Cell organelles.,
4. Components of cells and theirfunctions.
5. Single and free-living organismse.g. Amoeba, Paramecium, Euglena virids and chlamydomonas
6. Colonial organisms e.g. volvox
|* Examine plant and animal cells under micrscope. Draw and label the cells as observed.|
* The teacher should emphasise the cytoplasmic connections that exist in colonial forms.
|8.||Cell Organisation |
Explain levels of organization and complexity of organization in higher organisms.
|* These examples from the content should be used to illustrate differentiation and specialization in organism. Emphasize transport system in complex organisms.|
|9.||Cell and its Environment. (Physical and Biophysical Processes in Cell).|
9.1 Explain the physical andbiophysical processes in cell.
|* Use simple experiments to demonstrate diffusion, osmosis, turgidity and plasmolysis.|
* The teacher should explain the mechanism by which these processes occur.
|of diffusion and osmosis to life.|
* Explain the importance of membrane in living cells.
|10.||Properties and Functions of the Living Cell |
1.5 Explain reproduction in living cell.
|1. Autotrophic (Photosynthesis) 2. Heterotrophic (holozoic)|
saprophytic, symbiotic parasitic saprozoic and other special methods of nutrition.
3. Mineral nutrition. Macro and Micro nutrients.
i. Definition and processes of
1. Excretion in single-celled aquatic organism.
2. Waste product of metabolism in plants and animals.
1. Basis of growth; cell division (mitosis) enlargement and differentiation.
2. Aspects of growth
(auxins) 5. Tropisms
1. Definition of reproduction 2. Types of reproduction
”¢ Asexual and
4. Sexual reproduction ”¢ Conjugation
|* Experiment to show factors affecting photosynthesis|
* Experiment to show mineral deficiency in plant especially, phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium should be carried out.* Simplified processes involved in glycolysis and krebs cycle and reference to the role of ATP should be made.
* Structures for excretion in different organisms should be mentioned.
* Excretory products in different organisms should be mentioned.
* Mention increase in dry weight, irreversible increase in size and length and increase in the number of cells.
* Observation of root tip and shoot tip is required.
* Regulation of growth by hormones should be
* Types of tropisms should be demonstrated. Microscopic examination of the different regions of growth and development, region of cell division, elongation, differentiation and maturation.
* prepare slides of a. Fission in paramecium
b. budding in yeast and hydra
These should be observed and drawn c. Conjugation
d. Vegetative propagation should br demonstrated using citrus plants
|11.||Flowering plants |
sexual and asexual
reproduction in plants e.g. budding, grafting, layering, stem cutting and use of suckers.
function of the male and female parts of the flower.
pollinated and self-
their adaptive features.
|* Draw a labeled diagram of a named dicotyledonous and monocotyledonous plant.|
* Emphasis should be placed on functions of roots, stems and leaves in relation to their internal structural arrangement.
* Draw internal structures of different parts of monocotyledonous and a dicotyledonous leaf, stem and root.
*Draw and label a longitudinal section of a flower.
|1.3 Explain transpiration and mineral|
requirements in plants.
1.4 Explain the importance of photosynthesis and respiration in plants.
fruits and seeds.
*Conditions necessary for germination e.g. adequate moisture, oxygen and suitable temperature.
*Types of germination in plants (hypogeal and epigeal).
transpiration takes place in plants (lenticel & stomata).
place e.g. leaf, stem.
photosynthesis (Macro and Micro trace/elements. Effect of mineral deficiency, Nitrogen, carbon, oxygen, and
|*Draw and label whole and a section of drupe, berry, caryopsis, bean seed or groundnut seed, castor oil seed or jatropia seed.|
* Carry out experiments to show that water, temperature and oxygen are necessary for germination. Stages of hypogeal and epigeal germination should be observed and drawn.
*The students are to observe and draw stomata and guard cells under the microscope.
* Display poster of a stomata and its associated guard cells.
* Experiments to illustrate transpiration.
* Culture experiments to demonstrate the importance of mineral elements to plants.*Carry out simple experiments to illustrate the conditions necessary for photosynthesis e.g. light, oxygen, carbon dioxide, chlorophyll.
|1.5 Explain tropism in plants.||water cycles (Nutrient|
of plants where gaseous
exchange takes place.
cells (Glycolysis and
respiration and photosynthesis (catabolism and anabolism).
gabberellin in flowering, fruit ripening and leaf fall.
|*Test for starch in green leaf|
*Water culture effects of experiment. The forms in which minerals are taken up by plants should be noted. Importance of each element to living organism should be emphasized.*Simple experiments to show that
a. oxygen is used up. b. carbon dioxide and heat are produced during respiration.* Simple experiments to show that phototropism, geotropism and chemotropism take place in plants.
|12.||Soil Science |
1.1 Explain the constituents, structure and characteristics of soil.
1.2 Explain the various methods of soil and
water conservation and improvement
soil type (physical,
chemical and biological).
water retention capacity.
soil samples of different types of soil.
erosion e.g. rill, sheet, gully and splash or rain drop.
cultivation e.g. crop rotation, mono-cropping, mixed cropping, etc.
(afforestation and wild life conservation).
|* Carry out simple experiments to determine soil profile by both sedimentation and digging methods.|
*Carry out simple experiments to relate soil structure to water retention capacity. Determine experimentally the amount of air, water and humus in soild samples. Demonstrate with simple experiments the capillarity and porosity of different soil types.
* Water carbon and nitrogen cycles should be treated.
|13.||Invertebrates (External Features).|
Explain the external features and characteristics of
|* The teacher should lead the students to collect identify and classify members of|
|invertebrate animals.||invertebrate to their phylum e.g. amoeba, paramecium, hydra, tapeworm etc.|
invertebrate e.g. Amoeba
|Antropoda, Mollusca, Annelida, Nematoda and Plathyhelminthes. * Darw the external features of invertebrates e.g. earthworm, spider, millipede, centipede, cockroach, roundworm, tapeworm.|
14.1 Explain the external features and
characteristics of vertebrate animals.
|* Observe live fish, toad, lizard, bird and rate.|
* Draw and lable the examples named above to show external features.* Write similarities of one group with another.
* Discuss differences between one group and another.
|15.||Supporting Systems in Animals|
15.1 Explain the differenttypes of skeletons and supporting systems in animals.
|* The teacher should use the assembled complete skeleton of man, rat or rabbit to demonstrate supporting system in animals.|
* Draw and label the different bones of the skeleton of man.
|16.||Bones of the Skeleton |
15.1 Explain the different types of bones that
make up the mammalian skeleton.
|* Draw and label the specified bones of axial and appendicular skeleton.|
|17.||Types of Joints in Animals |
Describe the types of joints in mammals, their locations
|1. Types of joints in mammals e.g. movable and immovable joints,||* Demonstrate the mechanism whereby the bending and|
|and functions.||ball and socket joints etc.|
|straightening movements of the arm is brought about in man.|
* Draw a large and well labeled diagram of ball and socket joint.
|18.||Animal Nutrition |
18.1 Identify the mode of feeding in animals and explain the digestive system in man.
in, ingestion, digestion, absorption, assimilation and egestion.
|* Examine the dentition of carnivores, herbivores and omnivores and relate the dentition to their diet.|
* Carry out simple experiments on food test.
Draw and label a large diagram of digestive system of man and use it to explain the different ogans that take part in digestion.
Carry out simple experiments on the action of ptyalin, rennin and pepsin.
|19.||Mammalian Dentition |
18.1 Explain the structure of mammalian teeth,
types, functions and diseases.
|* teachers should instruct students to count their teeth, observe their shapes with the aid of mirror. * Examine the jaw of carnivores and omnivores dentition|
|5. Dental diseases associated with food habits and their prevention.||and relate them to their mode of feeding. * Emphasize teeth care; cleaning , good diet and visit to dentist etc.|
|20.||Circulatory System in Mammals|
20.1 Explain circulatorysystem in mammals.20.2 Describe the mechanism of blood clothing and first-aid treatment.
double, open and closed systems of circulation.
|* Draw and label the major components of circulatory system in mammals.|
Use a small mammal (Rat), dissected to demonstrate the circulatory system. Draw and label the vertical section of the mammalian heart.
* Use chart of blood circulatory system of man to demonstrate systematic circulation and pulmonary circulation.
* Demonstrate how cotton wool or bandage can be used to stop bleeding. Demonstrate how you can stop snake venom from being carried to the brain by the blood.
|Respiration in Mammals. |
21.1 Explain the process of respiration and the
respiratory organs in mammals
|1. Definition of respiration. 2. Types of respiration.|
3. Distinction betweenaerobic and anaerobicrespiration.
4. Respiratory organs in
|*Draw and label the respiratory system of dissected small mammals.|
* Carry out experiments to show
respiratory system in
exchange in fish, toad,
inhalation and exhalation.
in cytoplasm and kreb’s
cycle in mitochondrion.
combustion, fermentation and glycolysis.
|gaseous exchange and heat production in respiration. (Biochemical details not required).|
|22.||Excretion in Mammals |
22.1 Explain the different excretory organs and excretory products of mammals.
excretion as carried out
by the kidney.
(causes, symptoms &
|* Emphasis should be excretory organs and waste products, minerals, salt, heat, water from skin urea, uric acid, etc from the kidney and CO2 heat and H2O from lung.|
* Draw and label the cross-section of the kidney.
* Draw and label a cross-section of the mammalian skin.
|Coordination In Mammals |
23.1 Explain the component of the central and
peripheral nervous system in mammals.
|Draw and label a large diagram of a named mammalian brain (man)|
(eye, ear, nose, skin, etc)
and their locations.
ear and skin.
methods of correction.
effects of over and under- secretion of hormones, e.g. thyroxin, insulin, adrenalin, and sex hormone.
|*Draw and label reflex arc. Candidates should perform experiments to illustrate reflex actions such as blinking of the eyes, knee jerk, etc.|
*Longitudinal section of the mammalian eye and ear should be drawn and discussed. Charts of the eye and ear of man should be used.
|24.||Basic Concepts of Genetics |
24.1 Explain the basic terms used in genetics, the
Mendelian laws of inheritance and the applications of genetics.
|* Illustrate diagrammatically, types of crosses. Carry out the following: dihybrid cross, Rryy ”“ round yellow, X-wrinkled green rryy.|
* Note Round is dominant over wrinkled while yellow is dominant over green.
|is dominant over white.|
monohybrid and dihybrid
grafting in a named plant.
which can be propagated by grafting e.g. oranges, mangoes, rubber, etc.
|* Carry out random assortment of genes using assorted seeds.|
* Characteristics of peas and drosophylia melanogaster should be emphasized.
* Examples and explanations are required.
|25.||Basic Ecological Concepts |
25.1 Explain the ecosystem, ecological factors and its measurement.
|1. Components of ecosystem and sizes.|
”¢ Ecological components, biosphere, habitat, population, biotic community, ecosystem.
”¢ Biotic and abiotic as a component of the ecosystem.
climate, topography. ”¢ Edaphic factors:
chemical and physical composition, moisture content and soil texture.
|* The concept of ecological factors common to all habitats should be mentioned. Candidates should be able to mention some of the ecological factors including humidity, temperature, wind speed, rainfall and light intensity.|
* Simple measurement of ecological factors should be carried out
* Testing of soil pH using litmus paper.
Soil profile ”“ sedimentation method.
25.4 Explain energy transformation in
nature and ecological management.
|Marine habitat and their characteristics.|
1. Autotrophs and heterotrophs.
”¢ Producers ”“ autotrophs
”¢ Consumers ”“ heterotrophs.
”¢ Decomposers 2. Tropic levels:
”¢ Energyrelationships: food chain and food web.
Ecological succession A. Primary succession
B. Secondary Succession 3. Energy flow:
relationship in aquatic
and terrestrial habitat. ”¢ Pyramid of energy
”¢ Distinction between pyramid of numbers and pyramid of energy.
intake and loss at
earth’s surface. ”¢ Biosphere.
and macro decomposers).
|Visit sea shore.|
Candidates should be able to classify organisms as producers, consumers and decomposers in aquatic and terrestrial habitat.
Illustrate food relationship in food chain and food web using specific examples.
Drawing pyramid of number and of energy.
Candidates should study succession of an abandoned farmland, lawn pond or moistened bread in
”¢ Types of associations e.g. parasitism, symbiosis, saprophytism.
sources and effects
various forms of pollution with emphasis on regulatory bodies e.g. FEPA, United States Environmental Protection Agency, UNICEF, UNDP, WHO etc.
|the laboratory over a period of time.|
Colonizers should be identified by their scientific names.
Adaptive behaviour such as territorialism and dispersal mechanisms to avoid overcroding should be noted.
Non-cyclic nature of energy transfer should be mentioned.
The students should be able to construct and explain pyramid of numbers and of energy.
Energy as a limiting factor in primary production i.e. autotrophs production should be taught.
The students should observe demonstrations to
|25.5 Explain the various diseases of man and|
their causative agents.
|gonorrhoea, syphilis, poliomeelities, small pox and AIDS.|
of food poisoning and
types of food contamination and food poisoning..
A. Classification of plants
B. Effects of Agricultural activities on ecological systems.
C. Pests and Diseases of Agricultural importance.
Variation in population
height, weight etc).
|show that carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, heat energy are released during decomposition.|
Explain briefly, the first and second laws of thermodynamics.
Adaptation of plants and animals to environmental conditions with particular reference to differences in habitat, should be discussed. Teacher should take students out to appreciate the effect of environmental pollution ”“ smoke, dust, cellophare,
Discuss the harmful effects of noise pollution from generators and sound gadgets.
Draw and label the structure of a virus and a bacterium.
A visit to any hospital to observe how vaccination and inoculation are performed is required.
Lead students to identify food contamination and posons.
|25.6 Relevance of Biology to Agriculture.|
25.7 Variations and variability.
|Colour, skin, eye, hair|
coat of animals.
ability to roll the tongue, ability to taste phenyl thio carbanide PTC, Blood groups.
i. Adaptation of survival A. Competition
including intra and inter species competition
B. Relationship between
A. obtain food
|Emphasize disease controlled and eradication by immunization and vaccination.|
Common plants and crops should be classified.
Candidates should be able to explain how these activities of man affect natural ecosystems.
Candidates should be able to identify and describe the life cycle of some common pest of crops and livestock noting their economic importance and method of control.
The effect of diseases on crops and livestock, the causative organism as well as control measures should be noted.
Candidates should be able to plot histograms and interpret data based on distribution of these finger prints trais in a population.
|25.8 Evolution||Candidates should study the relationship of a mixed population of organisms to space sources of food and other materials, which are necessary for life.|
Candidates should observe examples of organisms that show structural adaptation for obtaining food (e.g. legs and beaks of different birds, mouth parts of insects especially mosquitoes, butterfly escape enemies; secure mates) regulates body temperature and conserve water.