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AP Biology Syllabus

AP Biology Syllabus  

A.P. Biology Course Description


A.P. Biology is a two semester sequential course designed to mimic the introductory college Biology curriculum.  The subject matter is similar to the regular Biology class, but in greater depth and detail, with special emphasis on organic chemistry, molecular biology, DNA, genetics, and evolution.  Later units include the study of living organisms, the basics of human anatomy and physiology, and ecology and the environment.  A significant portion of the course will be devoted to work in the laboratory.   A national test is taken at the end of the year to determine possible exemption of the introductory course in college.  . 


Course Overview


The AP Biology class focuses on the understanding of biological concepts rather than the memorization of facts.  The “4 Big Ideas” specified in the AP Biology Course Description as issued by the College Board are covered in each unit.  Students will have to achieve understanding of those big ideas and the achievement will be assessed through multiple choice and essay tests, written laboratory reports, and semester exams. 


A detailed syllabus will be available describing the daily topic and homework assignment/reading that the student is expected to do each night.  At the beginning of each period, a pop quiz over the previous nights reading will be given..  Lab work will follow the AP Biology Lab Manual for Students as well as handouts.  Students will be asked to keep a lab notebook in which they will document their lab work and write up their lab results and conclusions.  There will be a portion of the final exam devoted to the laboratory work. 


Methods of Instruction:

The majority of the course is designed to be activity-based so that students may construct their own understanding of the material. Lectures will be kept to a minimum. Students will often be working in groups to complete assignments. In addition, there will be both short and long-term projects assigned to both groups and individuals throughout the year. You are encouraged to keep a separate notebook for your class notes, homework, handouts, quizzes, and tests. You should keep all returned work throughout the year to use later when studying for the AP Exam. Students will also use excel, power point, Fathom, and other software packages and internet applets throughout the course. Each student is expected to participate in class discussions and to present ideas and work to the class.



Excellent attendance is mandatory. Students will not be permitted to make up assignments that are missed due to an unexcused absence. Assignments, quizzes, and tests missed on unexcused days will result in a zero. Students who fail to make up work missed for excused absences within three days of their return will receive a zero. NO EXCEPTIONS! Remember, the course will be taught as a college course.



Grading Scale:

You final quarter grade will be based on:

70% Major Grades – This category will include Chapter Tests given at the end of each chapter, major projects, and end of quarter tests. Large projects and multi-chapter tests may be averaged in twice.

30% Minor Grades – This category will include quizzes, lab write-ups, graded homework assignments, preliminary assignments related to projects, and short statistical writing assignments.


Final grades will be earned according to the policy of the Autauga County Board of Education. 




A.P. Biology Required Materials


$20 AP Bio Donation

Composition Notebook

3 ring binder

Everyday Materials: (pens or pencils, paper, etc.)

Graph Paper

2 Rolls Paper Towels

Sharpie Marker



AP Bio Book Campbell ISBN 0-8053-6777-2

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