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COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

 

AOS Integrated Physical Science:  This 9th and 10th grade course blends physics, earth science and chemistry into a two-year inquiry-based integrated physical science program. The goals of this course are to give students a strong background in the physical sciences, prepare students for advanced study in the physical sciences, present these materials in an integrated fashion, and prepare students for independent research by having them design many of their own laboratory activities.

 

AOS Sophomore/Junior/Senior Research: The goals of this sequence of three courses are to expose students to a series of interdisciplinary science research activities, to involve students in the application and use of inquiry-based methodology, to introduce the use of techniques, equipment and protocols typically utilized in scientific research laboratories, and to enhance the ability of students to read and write scientific papers at the publication level.  Students are expected to complete a two year research project of their own design under the supervision of a faculty mentor or an off-campus professional such as educators or researchers from the education and scientific community. 

 

AOS Biology:  The course is the next logical step for students who have spent two years in an integrated, inquiry based science program. AOS Biology is an honors level, project/problem based program where a series of scientific dilemmas are posed to students, the students identify what they need to know in order to answer the question, the teacher leads them through the content they need in order to answer the question, and lab activities are planned that will be relevant to the topic covered. This approach not only covers content but helps students develop creativity that is so essential to scientific inquiry.

 

AOS Analytic Geometry, Functions, and Trigonometry with Transformations: This course begins with an introduction to transformations and matrices with a sampling of applications.  The early work is then integrated into a study of the creation and interpretation of linear and quadratic models for data. The work with quadratics includes a transformations based introduction to the complex number system.  Transformation ideas are also applied to provide a full introduction to triangle trigonometry with applications.  Modeling ideas are extended with the introduction of a variety of the families of exponential, logarithm, and power functions to describe patterns in a broader range of data sets.   The overriding aim of this course is to help students focus on the difference between knowing how to perform special techniques and understanding the underlying mathematics so that the techniques can be applied in a variety of settings.

 

AOS Analysis AB: In this course students first study the models used to make inferences about the distribution of means computed from samples.  This study is followed by a continuing encounter with functions used to model dynamic processes.  Special attention is given to discrete and continuous models for population dynamics, including an introduction to logistic models.  The work with modeling will include tools used to model patterns in rates of change.  This is the setting for an introduction to derivatives with some relevant applications.  The course will include a unit on the design of experiments intended to identify relevant conditions causing specific effects.  

 

AOS Analysis BC: This course begins with the study of functions used to model the distribution of means computed from samples.  Students are introduced to the design of switching circuits.  The students continue their study of function as models for data with an emphasis on data collected from physical experiments. The analysis of motion in one and two dimensions is the setting for introducing derivatives as models for patterns in rates of change.  Circular functions are introduced as models for processes exhibiting periodic behavior.  The course includes a unit on the design of experiments intended to identify relevant conditions causing specific effects.

 

AOS Multivariable Calculus: This course includes an introduction to vector calculus with special emphasis on the kinematics and dynamics models of motion in two and three dimensions.  The course also includes techniques applied in physics to analyze in detail the modeling of the effect of force fields.  Students enrolled in this course are concurrently enrolled in Vector Calculus with Mathematica at the University of Illinois.

 

AOS Applied Linear Algebra and Differential Equations: This course is a Mathematica based exploration of two clusters of mathematical topics at the mid-undergraduate college level.  The first cluster is a set of powerful applications of both Linear Algebra and Differential Equations that exemplify the scope and power of mathematical models created and utilized using powerful mathematics software.  The second cluster is a set of mathematical concepts that connect and deepen our understanding of some core ideas in modern Linear Algebra and Differential Equations courses that underlie the applications in the first cluster.