Advanced Placement science courses deliver instruction based upon curriculum developed by the College Board. Each instructor of AP Biology and AP Physics tailors the curriculum in order to create a vibrant, in-depth exploration of science. All our AP science courses also have the added extra beneficial requirement of meeting for one to two hours of extra sessions per week in order to cover more material and go more in depth.
For a student to take an Advanced Placement class in Science, she or he must satisfy the requirements of the course to which he or she wants to take. These include:
- Success on a placement test, designed by the Science Department, that assesses the students’ analytical and quantitative skills;
- Achievement of high marks in both semesters of the previous years’ Science and Mathematics classes.
This class is a first year college biology course. The learning standards are based on four big ideas, as addressed by the Curriculum frameworks presented by College Board. This course is taught first, to prepare students for the College Board examination, and second, to allow extremely motivated students to further enrich themselves in a subject area of their particular interest. The curriculum framework is divided into the four big ideas below: Big Idea 1: The process of evolution drives the diversity and unity of life. Big idea 2: Biological systems utilize free energy and molecular building blocks to grow, to reproduce and to maintain dynamic homeostasis. Big Idea 3: Living Systems store, retrieve, transmit and respond to information essential to life processes. Big Idea 4: Biological systems interact, and these systems and their interactions possess complex properties. The core text is Neil Campbell, Biology. Supplementary readings will be assigned.
Pre-requisites: A diagnostic exam will evaluate a student’s ability to reason, think critically, and perform mathematical operations. The desire to work extremely hard and a strong work ethic is required. Math prerequisite: Over-all math average B or above. Science Prerequisite: Over-all science average B+ or above and must be open to extra periods for labs on a regular basis. For our assessments, we require at least six hours of homework per week, regular lab reports, and unit exams. All students in the class must take the AP biology exam in May in order to receive credit for the course.
Advanced Placement Physics emphasizes problem solving and mathematics as we conduct the scientific study of motion; the course mimics a general physics class for college freshman. It is a recent curriculum from the national College Board called “AP Physics 1” (requiring no prior knowledge of calculus or engineering). Topics include problem solving/ using equations, lab data analysis, and measurement techniques. Generally, we study vectors, distance, velocity, one- and two-dimensional motion, Newton’s Laws of motion, forces and fiction, momentum, work and energy, wave motion and behavior, sound, light and color, mirrors and lenses, electric force, field and potential, basic circuits, and magnetism.
Pre-requisites: A diagnostic exam will evaluate a student’s ability to reason, think critically, and perform mathematical operations. The desire to work extremely hard and a strong work ethic is required. Math prerequisite: Pass Algebra 2 with an A- average or above & enrolling in Pre-Calculus or Calculus. Science Prerequisite: Over-all science average A- or above and must be open to extra periods for labs on a regular basis. Assessments: Students should expect to spend approximately one hour each weeknight and three hours (minimum) each weekend engaged in homework or individual study. Weekly quizzes and unit exams comprise most of a student’s grade, with the remaining percentage coming from classwork and participation (byproducts of attendance) and laboratory reports. All students admitted into the course will be required to complete a summer assignment, and a test on the summer work will be given the first week of class in September. In addition, all students will be required to take the College Board AP Physics exam in May.