All courses focus on the development of theories and postulates through the scientific method. In addition, the upper-level courses prepare students for both the AP exams and future college-level science study. All courses include hands-on demonstrations and laboratory exercises. Small class sizes allow for maximum student engagement with instructors, peers, and both conceptual and physical materials.
As students tackle real-world problems, they are asked to think interdisciplinary, not just across the three main scientific branches, but also within and across other fields of study, such as English, history, or mathematics. This cross-curricular emphasis teaches students that concise and organized expression of thought is necessary through all academic disciplines.
Students also develop a flexible and curious worldview. Through investigational and inquiry-based labs, they move from discrete data to abstract concepts by gathering, extrapolating, thinking, testing, and communicating—the conceptual tools of scientific inquiry. At the same time, they gain experience with the physical tools in our two science labs.
The department also takes advantage of local resources, including visits from local scientific experts and field trips, such as Physics Day at Six Flags and a tour of the Washington University genetics lab.