The aim of this course is to help students build an understanding of modern biology on the foundation of their prior learning in physics and chemistry. Students will learn about the origin of life and the process of evolution through natural selection. They will then progress to learn about molecular biology, cellular biology and processes, genetics, ecology, and biotechnology This course also serves as a strong foundation for Anatomy and Physiology and Forensic Science.
A key goal of the course is to give students an integrated insight into the modern scientific view of the world. The separation of the sciences into the discrete disciplines of physics, chemistry and biology is becoming less useful; our world is simply not divided up in that way. By the conclusion of this course students should have a perspective on the world, and how it works, which will empower them to follow their interests in any direction after high school, either on to college/university or their career
6 Credits: Full Year Course with a Lab. Prerequisites: Chemistry
PSI Biology - Honors
This is the first course in a two-year biology sequence. All the course topics are either taken directly from AP Biology, or are designed to prepare students to understand AP Biology topics. The second course in the sequence, AP Biology, expands on some of those topics, and adds others, so that students are prepared to take the AP Biology examination at the end of that second year course.
6 Credits: Full Year Course with a Lab. Prerequisites: Honors Chemistry, Teacher Recommendation*
The curriculum for the Advanced Placement Biology course is the equivalent of a college level biology course that is usually taken by biology majors during their first year of college. Students obtain weighted credit by successfully completing the AP Biology exam at the end of the course. This biology course differs from the typical freshman high school biology class in that the text is a college level text, the types and depth of topics covered, the laboratory work done by the students, and most importantly, the amount of time and effort that is required by the students.
The main focus of this course is to help foster a better awareness of biology as an understanding of concepts, that science is a process and not just a memorization of facts. This will be achieved through personal experience gained from scientific inquiry, recognition of unifying themes that are inherent in the major topics of biology, and the practical application
of biological knowledge and critical thinking to social and environmental concerns. Topics that will be covered include the chemistry of life, cells, cells use of energy, heredity, molecular genetics, evolution, the diversity of organisms, the structure and function of both plants and animals, and ecology.
7 Credits: Full Year Course with a Lab. Prerequisites: Honors Biology, Teacher Recommendation*
Anatomy and Physiology
This course is a systematic study of the shape and structure of the organs of the human body and the functioning of those organ systems. It includes: cytology, histology, morphology, genetics, immunology, and pathology. Human anatomy and physiology is offered to meet the needs of our students who want an advanced level science course. It also serves to prepare students interested in entering medicine, nursing, dentistry, and other related health occupations.
6 Credits: Full Year Course with a Lab. Prerequisites: Biology, Teacher Recommendation*
Forensic Science is the application of scientific techniques and technology to the investigation of a crime and the presentation of evidence in a court of law. This elective science class provides students with an introduction to the topics of criminology within the field of forensic science. Study includes the applications of concepts from the areas of biology, chemistry, physics and geology to analyze and investigate evidence that may be discovered in a criminal investigation.
Classroom activities include experiments, projects, case studies and the incorporation of technology. It emphasizes inquiry-based learning, process skills, and higher-order thinking skills. In addition, it will present an introduction to the possible career paths in the forensic sciences. As in all science courses, it will develop critical thinking skills and help students to become fluent in the scientific method. Because experimentation is the basis of science, laboratory investigations are an integral part of this course. Investigative, hands-on lab activities that address the high school inquiry standards are central to the understanding of the topics of this course. Students will be introduced to the laboratory techniques of criminal investigators, and learn what methods they use in the criminal investigation process. Unlike other Forensic science is not just about one field of study; rather, it's a truly holistic science, in that it combines many fields with the crucial addition of legal standards and rules of evidence. The class is going to be focused on hands-on activities that follow procedures used in the current criminal study field.
5 Credits: Full Year Course. Prerequisites: Biology