Science explains phenomena in our daily lives; therefore, every member of society needs a clear understanding of scientific principles. Science is characterized by observations, empirical criteria, logical argument, and skeptical review, which led to its body of knowledge. It is an ongoing process of observing, hypothesizing, controlled testing, comparing results, and evaluating, and drawing conclusions, which may form the basis for new hypotheses. In science there is not only a body of knowledge in which there is always room for modification but also a responsibility to present that knowledge. The provision of many learning opportunities will enable students to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to think rationally and creatively and to be scientifically aware in the world about them.
Students will acquire the background knowledge and skills through being an active and inquiring learner in class, by taking full advantage of their learning opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom through instruction and performing laboratory work. This will lead to students developing a thorough understanding of scientific principles and being able to apply this knowledge to both familiar and unfamiliar situations. Laboratory experience will develop and reinforce concepts further through following correct experimental procedures, observing, predicting, designing experiments, safely using equipment and writing up of laboratory reports following the DP format or a modified version of that. Technology is used frequently in science along with students developing manipulative skills without the use of technology. The science program up to DP level will provide a good basis for those wishing to pursue science at college or university level.
The knowledge and skills developed during the first two years of high school science will enable students to study DP science courses having already been introduced to much of the format included in DP, in answering application and synthesis types of questions and writing up of laboratory reports. Throughout the study of science in high school, the IB learner profile for students is stressed. Being self-reliant, inquiring, knowledgeable, self-disciplined, open minded, industrious, thoughtful, honest and communicative are all admirable and worthy traits that students are expected to develop and pursue.We believe that science is a process for the description, creation and understanding of human experience. The process relies heavily on laboratory experiments that present authentic examples of scientific principles, engaging the students' minds and challenging previously held scientific concepts. As students conduct experiments, they are challenged to decide whether their preconceptions or new data best explain the phenomena observed. This authentic learning process is centered on the individual and their unique experiences. As such, the process of science is transformed into an intensely personal experience of exploration and discovery.
NOTE: Students must have a 3.0 cumulative GPA or more to be eligible for 2 HL Sciences and must be enrolled in SL Mathematics Analysis and Approaches (AA) or either of the HL Mathematics courses, AA or AI (Note: Mathematics Applications and Interpretations (AI) will not be offered for the 2020-2021 school year). Students will only be permitted to take three DP Science courses (HL or SL) in exceptional circumstances, must have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.7 and must maintain a minimum 4/C+ in each course for both semesters of Grade 11 in order to continue with all three sciences into Grade 12. Permission to undertake a non-traditional diploma is only granted by the IB in exceptional circumstances, based on compelling evidence of university matriculation requirements. That is, candidates require three sciences to be admitted to a university’s science or medical program.
Beginning in 2019-20, students in Grade 11 or 12 may take Advanced STEM or Robotics as their third mathematics credit