Mrs. Sarah McMath » Advanced Biology

Advanced Biology

Course Overview:

                What we know today about biology is a result of inquiry. Science is a way of knowing. Therefore, the process of inquiry in science and developing critical thinking skills is the most important part of this course. This course is designed to provide an experience equivalent to a two semester college introductory biology sequence. Students will develop analytical skills and a conceptual and factual framework appropriate to a beginning biology major. Preparation for this class is rigorous. At the end of the course, students will have an awareness of the integration of other sciences in the study of biology, understand how the species to which we belong is similar to, yet different from, other species, and be knowledgeable and responsible citizens in understanding biological issues that could potentially impact their lives. The foundation of this class is based upon the standards developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Students may choose to dual enroll with Mt. Aloysius College and receive college credits upon the successful completion of this course.


Course Themes:


Science is a process - Science is a way for us to learn about the things and events in our world.

Evolution – Evolution is change over time.  It is driven by a number of natural processes.

Energy transfer – Energy is the ability to do work.  In living systems energy is controlled by a variety of physical structures and biochemical reactions.

Continuity and change – Organisms tend to maintain a high fidelity in the genetic information that is passed from generation to generation.  However, external and internal factors can affect the level of fidelity.

Relationship of structure to function – Form and function affect each other and the ability of an organism to survive.

Regulation – Living organisms must have regulation of chemical and behavioral mechanisms.

Interdependence in Nature – At some level all biotic and abiotic factors effect each other.

Science, Technology and Society – Science, Technology and Society do not exist in separate spheres.  There is positive and negative interaction between them.

Course Schedule:
1. Introduction, Safety, Scientific Inquiry Review
2. Cell Processes and Structure 
3. Cell Processes and Energy
4. Making Cells and Organisms
5. Proteins
6. Origin of Life
7. Diversity of Life
8. Comparative Animal Biology
9. Biological Interactions