Honors Biology Syllabus - John Marshall High School


Honors Biology Syllabus

Teacher: Ms. Mkrtchyan

Major Goals/Objectives of the Course

In this course students will study/investigate selected biological concepts, as established by the CA Next

Generation Science Standards based on the Framework for K-12 on Science Education developed by National

Research Council. The course is designed to make science education more closely resemble the ways scientists work and think and enhances the student understanding of the world around as they integrate their knowledge through inquiry-based activities.

After successfully completing this course, students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge through the processes of observing, questioning, investigating and reasoning about the evidence through which knowledge and theories are developed and changed. Moreover the course will enable the students to make informed decisions about the applications of science, it will enable them to gradually deepen their understanding of scientific ideas and will provide the necessary preparation for college and careers.

Brief Description of Subject Content

The course is structured around the principles and four big ideas of science education which will be reinforced through classroom lecture and discussions; group and individual projects and reinforcement activities; individual study and laboratory investigations, socratic seminars and independent practice. Bio A will include

Investigation and Experimentation (Scientific Method), Structures and Processes from molecules to organisms and Heredity: Inheritance and Variations of Traits. Bio B will include Biological Evolution: Unity and

Diversity, Physiology and Ecology with reinforcement of interactions, energy and dynamics of Ecosystems.


To be successful in this class, students must be present in class daily; complete the assigned work, participate in class activities, study/review at home and turn the assignments in on time. Written homework will be assigned two or three times per week. Homework time will vary, but on average will be 30 to 45 minutes per day.

Written assignments and laboratory reports will review and reinforce the concepts presented in class, and will be graded on a point system. Most importantly, students are expected to study/review class notes and textbook material every day at home.


Tests are given at the end of each chapter, or when each topic is completed. The format for these assessments is multiple-choice, fill in, matching and essay questions . In addition, students will be asked to solve problems, and to interpret and explain information presented in the class lecture/discussion, and in the textbook or supplemental material. Moreover, students are encouraged to actively contribute to class discussions incorporating their inventive thinking, global awareness and team collaboration. Written class work and homework will be assigned points which will count towards the student’s grade in class. Work must be neat, complete and on time in order to receive credit. Letter grades will be based on a percentage which will be calculated by dividing the student’s total points by the total points possible at each grading period.

Grading scale:

Exemplary Response

Competent Response

Average Response

Minimal Response

Inadequate Response

90-100% A









Classroom Rules

Students must be in class, on time and every day if they are to succeed in this class. They are to bring their textbook and notebook containing their organized notes and work, blank paper, a pen and a pencil. All school rules apply in this class. Inappropriate behavior and language will not be tolerated. Caps are not to be worn in the classroom and the application of makeup is not permitted. CD/headphones and other types of electronics are not to be brought to class. Other standards will be explained as the need arises.

Dear Parent/Guardian

This information is being provided to you so that you may assist in your son’s/daughter’s successful school experience. If you have any questions about this course or about your child’s performance in this class please feel free to contact me at (323) 671-1400 or through e-mail: sxm0256@lausd.net

or send a note with your child.

I hope that this year will be fun and rewarding.

Please read the following contracts and sign your name where appropriate.

Student Safety Contract:

I will:

Read the lab investigation before coming to class or before beginning any lab activity.

Wear personal protective equipment as directed to protect my eyes, face, hands and body while conducting lab activities.

Follow all instructions given by the teacher.

Conduct myself in a responsible manner at all times during a laboratory demonstration.

Student Honor Contract:

I will:

 Not copy someone else’s work

Not allow someone else to copy my work

Do my own work to the best of my ability


Student name (PRINT):______________________________________

Student Signature: _______________________________________

Parent Signature:____________________________________________

Period ____