Patterns Biology Course Overview


This lab-based course covers the foundational principles of modern life science as outlined in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). It also includes approximately a third of the Earth and Space Science standards, primarily those connected to environmental science and ecology. The course emphasizes all three dimensions of the NGSS, with special attention to the crosscutting concepts of Patterns and Energy and Matter. Additionally, scientific inquiry and engineering design practices are emphasized throughout the course. The course is designed to follow a chemistry course and so builds on student understandings of molecules as they explore the biomolecular underpinnings of life's functions, the evolution of life, and the interactions of life in ecosystems. Technological, historical, political, and environmental aspects of biology will also be addressed. Critical thinking, data analysis, and argumentation from evidence are also emphasized.