Science Department

Our science courses are designed to help our students develop analytical and critical thinking skills, and empower them to make ethical decisions. Based upon current trends in higher education, we have devised a dual track approach to science course offerings. Students are afforded the opportunity to pursue a Medical or Engineering science track.

All freshmen take either Conceptual Physics or Conceptual Physics Honors. Sophomores take Chemistry I or Chemistry I Honors. Juniors take Biology or Pre-AP Biology (Biochemistry/Microbiology). Electives for juniors and seniors include Forensic Science, Macro-biology/Environmental Science, Honors Chemistry II, Physics I, Human Anatomy and Physiology Honors, AP Biology, AP Chemistry or AP Physics.

518 CONCEPTUAL PHYSICS (9) Required Course Credits 6.0
A full year course intended to learn fundamentals of Physics from a conceptual rather than a mathematical viewpoint. Rules and laws of Physics will be used to discuss the physical situations that make up the basics of physics. Numerous demonstrations, discovery-based laboratory, lecture, and multimedia will be applied to the following topics: kinetics, forces & motion, electricity & simple circuits, generators & diodes, and energy.
519 CONCEPTUAL PHYSICS (Honors) (9) Required Course Credits 6.0
A full year course intended to build a strong conceptual understanding of the fundamentals of Physics. With this strong conceptual foundation, Students are better equipped to understand the equation and formulas of physics and to make connections between concepts of physics and their everyday world. Problems assigned are challenging compared to regular Conceptual Physics in preparation for AP Physics. Numerous demonstrations, discovery-based laboratory, lecture, and multimedia will be applied to the following topics: kinetics, forces & motion, electricity & simple circuits, generators & diodes, and energy.
501 CHEMISTRY I (10) Required Course Credits 6.0
This course is an introduction to matter and its properties. Through class work and laboratory activities, students will view the structure of and interactions among different types of matter. The link between chemistry and everyday life will be discovered and analyzed. Students will be introduced to scientific writing and will learn how to handle chemicals and equipment in a safe and productive manner. This course is a prerequisite to Biology 1 which is taught at a molecular level, hence the need for a chemistry background.
511 CHEMISTRY I (Honors) (10) Required Course Credits 6.0
This course will run parallel to Chemistry I but at a faster pace and greater depth.

Prerequisite: At least a 3.5 in Conceptual Physics and Department approval.

502 BIOLOGY I (11) Required Course Credits 6.0
This course is designed to introduce students to the major concepts in the biological sciences. Introductory topics include: cell chemistry and physiology, cell processes, genetics and genetic engineering. Their applications and implications are examined through various exercises and independent research. A thorough exposure to theories on the origin of life is provided before the student moves on to examine viruses, bacteria and the protists.

A brief survey of the major animal phyla and plant divisions is presented. Required laboratory sessions provide the student with the opportunity to observe some of the processes covered in the classroom, refine their inquiry skills and practice recording, expressing and interpreting data. At all times, the development of a keen awareness of the social and ethical implications of scientific research and development is stressed.

512 BIOLOGY I (Honors) (11) Required Course Credits 6.0
Pre-AP Biology is similar to an Honor’s Biology course. It is designed for students thinking of taking AP Biology in either their junior or senior year and/or majoring in pre-med in college. Pre-AP Biology students will cover topics in more depth than Honor’s Biology did in the past. This course will cover more material, labs and investigations and do more critical reading and writing. Any student who is genuinely interested in pursuing a career in the biological sciences or medical fields or who is planning on taking AP Biology in the future is strongly advised to take this course.

Pre-requisites: At least a 3.0 average in prior Science, Mathematics and English courses. Department approval required.

534 HUMAN ANATOMY & PHYSIOLOGY (Honors) (12) Elective Course Credits 6.0
This course was designed for students who plan to pursue a career in medicine or other health sciences. It is open to any qualified senior who is interested in how the human body works. The structure and function of human systems will be studied on a college level. Dissection of the cat, with oral lab practicals will be integrated on a comparative basis with the study of the human body. Independent research, case studies, cooperative study groups, and related lab experiences are integral parts of this course.

Prerequisite: At least 3.0 average in previous Science courses and Department approval. This elective is for Seniors only.

562 ADVANCED PLACEMENT BIOLOGY (11&12) Elective Course Credits 6.0
AP Biology is comparable to an introductory college biology course taken by students planning to major in the biological sciences in college or for those wanting to go into pre-med. AP Biology differs from the standard high school biology class in that it covers more material in greater depth and at a faster pace.

This course has been authorized by the College Board as meeting the requirements for AP Biology. Any student who is genuinely interested in pursuing a career in the biological sciences or medical fields is strongly advised to take AP Biology. AP Biology provides students with a momentous advantage in college by allowing them to obtain the groundwork in concept and skill prerequisites to many college biological science courses. The ability to succeed in AP Biology gives students self-assurance and a knowledge base to be successful in future science classes.

Pre-requisites: This course is open to Seniors with at least a 3.5 average in prior Science, Mathematics and English courses.  Department approval is required.

545 ADVANCED PLACEMENT CHEMISTRY (11&12) Elective Course Credits 6.0
AP Chemistry is designed to be the equivalent of the general chemistry course usually taken during the first year in college. This course will enable students to undertake, as college freshmen, second-year work in the Chemistry sequence at their institution or to register for courses in other fields where general Chemistry is a prerequisite. For other students, the AP Chemistry course fulfills the laboratory Science requirement and frees time for other courses.

AP Chemistry students will attain a depth of understanding of fundamentals and a reasonable competence in dealing with chemical problems. This course will contribute to the development of the students’ abilities to think clearly and to express their ideas, orally and in writing, with clarity and logic. AP Chemistry will provide students with a laboratory experience equivalent to that of a typical college course.

Pre-requisites: Chemistry I Honors and Algebra II Honors, where a GPA of 3.5 or better is required for both courses.

544 FORENSIC SCIENCE (11&12) Elective Course Credits 6.0
This course will explain the science behind crime-scene investigations. Students will be introduced to the different types of evidence, as well as the techniques for collection and analysis. As they progress through the course, they will refine the techniques and apply them to other areas of study.

The topics covered include: crime-scene investigation; handling and examination of trace evidence such as hair, fibers, soil, pollen, and glass; blood and blood spatter examination; DNA; drug; handwriting and tool mark analysis; impressions; ballistics; forensic anthropology; and the determination of the cause and time of death.

1 STEM( Automation and Robotics) (7) Elective Course Credits 6.0
This course is intended for 7th grade students. This unit begins with students learning how to create and use an engineering notebook, which will be used throughout the GTT course. They will learn about engineering and the STEM courses (science, technology, engineering, and math).The students will trace the history, development, and influence of automation and robotics. They learn about mechanical systems, energy transfer, machine automation and computer control systems. Students use a robust robotics platform to design, build, and program a solution to solve an existing problem.
2 STEM ( Design and Modeling)  (8) Elective Course Credits 6.0
This course is intended for 8th grade students.  In this unit, students begin to recognize the value of an engineering notebook to document and capture their ideas. They are introduced to and use the Engineering design process to solve problems and understand the influence that creative and innovative design has on our lives. Students use industry standard 3D modeling software to create a virtual image of their designs. Students will bring their virtual images to life by building and testing their prototypes in a real world setting.
3 Introduction to Engineering Design (10) Elective Course Credits 6.0
Introduction to Engineering DesignTM (IED) is a high school level course that is intended for 10th grade students who are interested in design and engineering. The major focus of the IED course is to expose students to design process, research and analysis, teamwork, communication methods, global and human impacts, engineering standards, and technical documentation. IED gives students the opportunity to develop skills and understanding of course concepts through activity-, project-, and problem-based (APPB) learning. Used in combination with a teaming approach, APPB-learning challenges students to continually hone their interpersonal skills, creative abilities and understanding of the design process. It also allows students to develop strategies to enable and direct their own learning, which is the ultimate goal of education.

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