High School - Science
Environmental Science (46100G)
Grade Level: 9
This course is an introduction to the systems dynamics of the earth and biosphere that will be taught in earth science and biology. A study of major topics include: scientific inquiry, the physical and living aspects of the environment, resource conservation. Students will investigate issues of local, regional, national, and global concern, and will explore possible solutions. Career opportunities, human impact on the environment and civic responsibility will also be studied. This course is designed to address content gaps and skills of select ninth grade students prior to taking an SOL tested Science course.
This course is primarily a study of the earth’s composition, structure, processes, and history, its atmosphere, fresh water, and oceans, and its environment in space. The class teaches historical contributions to the development of scientific thought about earth and space. Major topics of study include plate tectonics, the rock cycle, Earth history, the oceans, the atmosphere, weather and climate, and the solar system and universe.
This course is the study of Earth Science focuses on the interactions of Earth systems with resulting changes on crustal materials, landforms, rock structures, air, water, and life itself. The study of the earth is extended into the cosmos through an investigative exploration of the universe. Disciplines that will be studied are geology, astronomy, meteorology, and oceanography. Higher levels of thinking and reasoning are taught, including analysis and synthesis. Time will be allocated for independent research. This course receives honors weighted credit.
Prerequisite: Earth Science
This course is a study of the physical, chemical, geological, and biological aspects of the oceans. Topics include life in oceans, waves, tides and currents, chemistry of seawater, and weather and climate. Students will investigate issues of local, regional, national, and global concern, and will explore possible solutions. Career opportunities in oceanography will also be studied.
The goal of this course is to provide students with an introduction to the concepts of modern astronomy, the origin and history of the Universe, and the formation of the Earth and the solar system. The course gives a description of astronomical phenomena using the laws of physics. The course treats many standard topics including planets, stars, the Milky Way and other galaxies, black holes, and the origin of the universe.
This course is designed to provide a detailed understanding of living systems and to emphasize alternative scientific explanations related to controlled experiments, analysis and communication of information, and use of scientific literature. Biology I explores the history of biological thought and the evidence that supports it. It provides the foundation for investigating biochemical life processes, cellular organization, mechanisms of inheritance, dynamic relationships among organisms, and change in organisms. The importance of scientific research that validates or challenges ideas is emphasized.
This course is designed to give students an understanding of plant and animal morphology and physiology, as well as nature study, civic biology (ecology), health education, and basic principles of biology. Students are required to read selected articles from an approved list. Experiments are performed, and students build equipment from raw materials to test scientific principles. Higher levels of thinking and reasoning are taught that include analysis and synthesis. Time will be allocated for independent research. This course receives honors weighted credit.
Prerequisite: Biology I or Honors Biology I; Honors Chemistry; (Honors Anatomy/Physiology is highly recommended)
This is a year-long course. The key concepts and related content that define the course are organized around a few underlying principles called the big ideas. These big ideas encompass the core scientific principles, theories and processes governing living organisms and biological systems. It is intended for students who have the conceptual framework, factual knowledge, and analytical skills to critically evaluate biological issues. Topics covered include molecules and cells, heredity and evolution, and organisms and populations. The learning objectives for the course can be found on the College Board website. The course will prepare students for the AP examination in Biology. This course receives advanced weighted credit if the student sits for the corresponding College Board exam.
Prerequisite: Biology I or Honors Biology I with a C or higher; Passing Score on the Virginia Placement Test
General Biology I - Focuses on foundations in cellular structure, metabolism, and genetics in an evolutionary context. Explores the core concepts of evolution; structure and function; information flow, storage and exchange; pathways and transformations of energy and matter; and systems biology. Emphasizes process of science, interdisciplinary approach, and relevance of biology to society. Please read all the details about dual enrollment under the Programs link on the Program of Studies home page. This course receives advanced weight.
This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of the cause-effect relationships existing among/between organisms and their environment. Emphasis is placed on mankind’s impact on the environment and its ecosystems, and on future
environmental and ecological needs. Students study a variety of environmental and ecological topics comprising environmental systems, including: global warming; the ozone layer; water pollution; alternative energy sources; interrelationships among resources and an environmental system; biodiversity; biotic and abiotic factors in habitats; ecosystems and biomes; sources and flow of energy through an environmental system; relationships between carrying capacity and changes in populations and ecosystems. Lab work, the use of multimedia and computer simulations, and laboratory and field investigations are important components of this course.
Prerequisite: Biology I or Honors Biology I; (Honors Chemistry is highly recommended)
This course enables students to effectively link structures of the human body with their functions. Focuses of this course will include anatomical terminology, maintenance of homeostasis, and detailed analysis of the following organ systems: Integumentary, Skeletal, Muscular, Nervous, Cardiovascular, Respiratory, Digestive, Urinary, and Reproductive. Students will research and discuss abnormalities that occur during development, throughout life, and changes specifically associated with cancers and genetic disorders. This course receives honors weighted credit.
Prerequisite: Biology I or Honors Biology I; Algebra II or Honors Algebra II
This course is designed for students who wish to acquire a strong foundation in chemistry and are interested in taking higher-level high school science courses. Quantitative aspects of chemistry are stressed, and there is heavy emphasis on problem-solving. Chemistry includes an in-depth study of quantitative relationships of energy and matter, molecular structure, kinetic theory, thermodynamics, solution chemistry, and organic chemistry are included in this course. Development of students’ analytical abilities is emphasized through both laboratory experience and discussions in the classroom. This course receives honors weighted credit.
Prerequisite: Chemistry or Honors Chemistry; Algebra II or Algebra II/Trigonometry
This yearlong course is designed to be the equivalent of a college introductory general chemistry course. It is designed to enable students to attain a depth of understanding of the fundamentals of chemistry and a reasonable competence in dealing with chemical problems. Upon successful completion of the course students will be able to comprehend the development of principles and concepts, to demonstrate application of principles, to relate fact to theory and properties to structure, and to understand systematic nomenclature. The course will emphasize experimental procedures, observations of chemical substances and reactions, recording of data, and calculation and interpretation of results based on quantitative data. The course follows an outline proposed by the College Board Advanced Placement Program. This course receives advanced weighted credit if the student sits for the corresponding College Board exam.
Prerequisite: Honors Chemistry with a C or higher; Passing Score on the Virginia Placement Test
This course explores the fundamental laws, theories, and mathematical concepts of chemistry. Please read all the details about dual enrollment under the Programs link on the Program of Studies home page. This course receives advanced weight.
Prerequisite: Algebra II; Biology I or Honors Biology I
The course presents a complex study in the areas of force and motion, energy transformations, wave phenomena and the electromagnetic spectrum, light, electricity, fields and non-Newtonian physics. The use of mathematics, including algebra and trigonometry, is important, but conceptual understanding of physics systems remains a primary concern. Topics are presented in depth and at a fast pace. Independent practice and dependence on previous learning is routine. Advanced skills in reading
comprehension and mathematics proficiency are absolutely essential to student success. Laboratory experiments will be conducted so that students can experience the principles of physics in action. The course receives honors weighted credit.
Prerequisite: Algebra II
This yearlong course is a non-calculus based physics course that is equivalent to a first-semester college course in algebra-based physics. The course covers Newtonian mechanics (including rotational dynamics and angular momentum); work, energy, and power; and mechanical waves and sound. It also introduces electric circuits. Hands-on lab experiments are an important part of the course. Most of the labs are open-ended with students given an objective and a list of equipment. Students design their own procedure, data gathering, and data analysis. Each experiment requires a written lab report, which students maintain in individual portfolios. This course receives advanced weighted credit if the student sits for the corresponding College Board exam.
Prerequisite: AP Physics 1: Algebra-Based
This individualized instructional course for identified students with disabilities is designed to teach and reinforce basic science concepts and to develop science knowledge needed for independent living and that leads to responsible participation in the world of work as outlined on the student’s IEP. This course may be continued.