AP Biology

Philosophy 
This AP Biology course is designed to offer students a solid curriculum in introductory
college-level biology, and the course focuses on enduring conceptual understandings
and the biological content that supports them. Science practices are employed to help
students utilize inquiry-based learning that maximizes depth of learning. Therefore, the
course is structured around big idea statements, enduring understandings, and science
practices that allow students opportunities to develop an appreciation for the science of
biology and to identify and understand unifying principles within a diversified biological
world. The process of inquiry and the development of critical thinking skills are important
components of my AP Biology course.

Course Objectives
The  main  objective  of  this  AP  biology  class  is  to  be  the  equivalent  of  a  college 
introductory biology course usually taken by a college freshman.  The second objective 
is  to  prepare  students  to  take  the  Advanced  Placement  Exam  given  by  the  College 
Board in May.

Prerequisites
Students must have taken biology. Students must have taken or be enrolled in chemistry.

Course Background
The AP exam is a truly comprehensive exam in biology. Its purpose is to give students 
an  opportunity  to  demonstrate  college-level  achievement  in  biology.  This  exam  is 
evaluated on a point system with 5 as the highest and 1 as the lowest. Those achieving 
a 3 or higher may or may not be given credit, depending on the college. Seniors should 
check with the university they are planning to attend to see what score will be accepted 
for credit. For example, Wake Forest will only accept a score of a 4 or 5.

Course work
UNIT 1: Chemistry of Life 
UNIT 2: Cell Structure and Function 
UNIT 3: Cellular Energetics 
UNIT 4: Cell Communication and Cell Cycle 
UNIT 5: Heredity 
UNIT 6: Gene Expression & Regulation
UNIT 7: Natural Selection 
UNIT 8: Ecology

Expectations
Follow all school rules.
Respect others and their property.
Come to class prepared everyday with your notebook, paper, and pencil/pen.
Always try your best. Communicate with me when you experience problems with class.
Have a good attitude toward yourself, your fellow students, your work and your teacher.

Materials
Large 3-ring notebook for handouts & labs
Lined loose-leaf paper
Blue or black pen and pencil to be brought to class every day
USB Flash drive and access to Canvas/Google Drive

Textbook
Principles of Life (1st or 2nd Edition) by D. Hillis, D. Sadava. H. Heller and M. Price

Grading system
Nine-week grades will be calculated using the following categories and percentage
Tests (50%)
Quizzes (25%)
Notebook/Labs (25%)

Letter grades will be given based on the following scale:
A = 100 - 90 (Superior Effort)
B = 89 - 80  (Good understanding of material)
C = 79 - 70  (Basic skills mastered)
D = 69 - 60   (Lacks knowledge of skills and/or concepts)
F = 59 - 0        (Insufficient mastery of material)

Final  grades  will  be  calculated  using  the  letter  grades  of  the  two  nine  week  grading 
periods and the letter grade of the final exam.  Each nine-week grading period will count 
37.5% toward the final grade.  The final exam will count 25% toward the final grade.

FINAL EXAM
All students will be required to take a midterm and final exam each nine weeks and also 
will  be  required  to  take  the  Biology  AP  Exam  (midterms  may  be  in  the  form  of  a  lab 
practical).

MAKE-UP WORK
If  you  are  absent  from  class  for  any  reason  (including  school  related  activities),  it  is 
YOUR responsibility to get the assignments and set-up a time with me to make-up any 
missed classroom activities, quizzes, or tests.