The science curriculum at Prep is designed to allow students to interact with science as a discipline and to experience empirical inquiry as a method of investigation. Science courses focus on the scientific process, enabling students to discover and interpret scientific knowledge, develop positive attitudes and interests about science, and recognize that what they learn can be applied to decisions they will make in a world influenced by science and technology. To prepare students for this world, Prep has adopted the “Physics First” sequence of teaching science. Students study physics in grade 9, chemistry in grade 10, and biology in grade 11 or 12. This method, which teaches physics concepts in concrete ways, takes into account the cognitive development of high schools students. It also acknowledges that students need to master basic principles of physics in order to understand chemistry at a deeper level, while a strong foundation in physics and chemistry will allow them to explore biology with a more solid foundation. Electives and Advanced Placement courses provide opportunities for advanced study.
Prep requires two years of laboratory science as a minimum graduation requirement, but strongly recommends at least three
years of laboratory science. Many colleges require three or more lab sciences, or particular lab sciences. Each student is
encouraged to consult with his science teachers and with his guidance counselor and the college placement office to determine his best course of study in the sciences.
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