Science Department

The courses provide opportunities that both strengthen and challenge our students, while promoting science literacy, logical thinking, curiosity and inquiry among all students.

Living Environment Regents

1 Year | 1 Credit | Life Science

This course is a Regents Level Life Science Course based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards and the New York State Science Learning Standards, with full implementation to NYSSLS in 2023. The topics covered in this course include: Measurement Skills, Laboratory Skills, Cell Structure and Function, Ecology, Chemistry of Life, Genetics, Human Body Systems and Evolution.

This is a laboratory based course and students will be required to participate in a minimum of 1,200 minutes of laboratory activities throughout the year. Successful completion of the laboratory portion of this course is a requirement for taking the Living Environment Regents Exam which will be offered at the conclusion of the course. At the conclusion of the course, a final exam will be given and will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

Contemporary Issues in Living Environment

Full Year EOD | 1/2 Credit

This class is designed for upperclassmen who have not yet passed the Living Environment Regents Exam, but have qualified for the exam through successful completion of required lab minutes. The class explores contemporary issues affecting the life through current events and articles that relate directly to the Living Environment Regents course. Through these current events review of the skills and knowledge necessary for success on the Regents exam will be addressed. Upon completion of the course, students will retake the Living Environment Regents exam.

Living Environment Lab Review

1 Year | 0 Credits| Life Science

This class is designed to allow students an opportunity to qualify for the Living Environment Regents Exam by meeting and completing the required 1200 minutes of passing lab minutes.  Students will have already taken Living Environment Regents and either passed the class or are concurrently enrolled in the Contemporary Issues of Living Environment.

Earth Science Regents

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Setting: Earth Science

This course is a Regents Level Physical Science Course based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards. The topics covered in this course include: Measurement Skills, Laboratory Skills, The Earth’s Atmosphere, Meteorology, Astronomy, Oceanography, Physical Geology, Historical Geology and Environmental Science. This is a laboratory based course and students will be required to participate in a minimum of 1200 minutes of laboratory activities throughout the year. Successful completion of the laboratory portion of this course is a requirement for taking the Physical Setting: Earth Science Regents Exam which will be offered at the conclusion of the course. The Regents exam includes a lab portion that must be taken prior to each administration of the Regents exam, including summer school, that comprises approximately 15% of the Regents grade. At the conclusion of the course, a final exam will be given and will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

Contemporary Issues in Earth Science          

Full year EOD | 1/2 Credit     

This class is designed for upperclassmen who have not yet passed the Earth Science Regents Exam, but have qualified for the exam through successful completion of required lab minutes. The class explores contemporary issues affecting the earth through current events and articles that relate directly to the Earth Science Regents course. Through these current events review of the skills and knowledge necessary for success on the Regents exam will be addressed. Upon completion of the course, students will retake the Earth Science Regents exam, both the written and lab portion.

Earth Science Lab Review

1 Year | 0 Credits | Physical Science     

This class is designed to allow students an opportunity to qualify for the Earth Science Regents Exam by meeting and completing the required 1200 minutes of passing lab minutes.  Students will have already taken Earth Science Regents and either passed the class or are concurrently enrolled in the Contemporary Issues of Earth Science.

Chemistry Regents

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Setting Chemistry

This course is a Regents Level Physical Science Course based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards. The topics covered in this course include: Measurement Skills, Laboratory Skills, Matter and Energy, Atomic Structure, Bonding, The Periodic Table, Gas Laws, Mathematics of Chemistry, Kinetics and Equilibrium, Acids and Bases, Solutions, Redox and Electrochemistry, Organic Chemistry and Nuclear Chemistry. This is a laboratory based course and students will be required to participate in a minimum of 1200 minutes of laboratory activities throughout the year. Successful completion of the laboratory portion of this course is a requirement for taking the Physical Setting: Chemistry Regents Exam which will be offered at the conclusion of the course. At the conclusion of the course, a final exam will be given and will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Regents Living Environment and Algebra I. 

Chemistry (General)

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Science

This course is a commencement-level Level Physical Science Course designed to give students an additional option for the third year of the science requirement needed to receive a New York State Regents Diploma. General Chemistry is based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards. The topics covered in this course will emphasize the practical applications of Chemistry in our everyday life. Laboratory exercises will be conducted according to individual class and teacher discretion with an emphasis on chemical safety and awareness. Labs will be incorporated within each class as needed. A department-wide final exam will be given as 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Regents Living Environment.

Physics (Regents)

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Setting: Physics

This course is a Regents Level Physical Science Course based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards.

The topics covered in this course include:

  • Measurement Skills,
  • Laboratory Skills,
  • Kinematics,
  • Statics,
  • Dynamics,
  • Work and Energy,
  • Conservation of Momentum and Energy,
  • Mechanical Waves,
  • Electromagnetic Radiation,
  • Electricity,
  • Magnetism,
  • Modern Physics.

This is a laboratory based course and students will be required to participate in a minimum of 1,200 minutes of laboratory activities throughout the year. Successful completion of the laboratory portion of this course is a requirement for taking the Physical Setting: Physics Regents Exam which will be offered at the conclusion of the course. At the conclusion of the course, a final exam will be given and will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

Prerequisites:

  1. Successful completion of Regents Living Environment
  2.  Successful completion of Regents Earth Science or Regents Chemistry
  3.  Passing grade on the Integrated Algebra exam or concurrently enrolled in a math course that will prepare students for the Integrated Algebra regents exam given at the end of the current year 

Environmental Science

1 Year |1 Credit | Life Science

This course is a commencement-level Life Science Course designed to meet the science requirement needed to receive a New York State Regents Diploma. Environmental Science is based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards. Environmental Science is designed to introduce students to major ecological concepts and the environmental problems that affect the world in which we live. The topics covered in this course will focus on the scientific method, population growth and demography, aquatic ecosystems, soil and land ecology, forest ecosystems, and atmosphere ecology. Laboratory exercises will be conducted according to individual class and teacher discretion. A department wide final exam will be given.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Living Environment Regents.

Forensic Science

1 Year | 1 Credit | Life Science

This course is a commencement-level Science Course designed to give students an additional option for the third year of the science requirement needed to receive a New York State Regents Diploma. Forensic Science is based on the New York State Math, Science, and Technology Standards. The topics covered in this course will focus on crime scene evidence, lab analysis techniques, and the recording and presenting of data. Mock crime scenes will be investigated and real case studies will be analyzed. Laboratory exercises will be conducted according to individual class and teacher discretion. A department wide final exam will be given.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Regents Living Environment.

Introduction to Computer Science

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Science

An interactive introductory course for students brand new to programming that teaches the foundations of computer science using the Python language. This course prepares students for AP Computer Science A and AP Computer Science Principles, and it will teach students how to think computationally and solve complex problems, skills that are important for every student.

Prerequisites: Students have successfully completed Algebra I.

The Science of Hollywood – Reel Facts or Fiction?

1 Year | 1/2 Credit

Have you ever seen something on TV or in a movie and thought, “How did they do that?” or “Can that actually happen?” This course will explore the science behind the magic that you see and what is reality. Students will investigate the possibility of things they see using scientific principles. Movies, television, and other media will be utilized to distinguish between science fact and science fiction.

Prerequisites: NONE

AP Biology (FMCC and AP course)

1 Year | 1 Credit

This course s a college level course for academically motivated students. This course covers general biological principles, relating cell structure to function. Topics discussed include biochemistry, energetics, the molecular basis of cell metabolism, principles of heredity and the genetic control of cell activity, cell division and the homeostatic regulation of the cell environment for both eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. Physiological processes at the organism level are analyzed and correlated with the simpler manifestations a the cell level. The course emphasizes modern research, the nature and philosophy of science and the art of experimentation.

AP Biology is a course for academically motivated students. This course is equivalent to two semesters of college level biology. A cumulative final exam will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

College credit for this course can be earned in the following way: 

  • Students can enroll in Biology 171 from Fulton Montgomery Community College through the University in the High School Program which affiliates Amsterdam High School with Fulton Montgomery Community College( approximate cost: $175).

Prerequisite: Students should have successfully completed high school courses in biology and chemistry.

AP Chemistry (FMCC and AP)

1 Year | 1 credit 

This course is a college-level course for academically motivated students. This course focuses on a model of instruction which promotes enduring, conceptual understandings and the content that supports them. Students enrolled in this course will develop advanced inquiry and reasoning skills. The Big Ideas covered in this course include: the structure of matter, bonding and intermolecular forces, chemical reactions, kinetics, thermodynamics and chemical equilibrium.

AP Chemistry is a course for academically motivated students. This algebra based course is equivalent to two semesters of college chemistry. This course is offered every other year opposite AP Physics 1. A cumulative final exam will account for 20% of the final course grade.

Students should have successfully completed a general high school chemistry course and Algebra II.

AP Physics 1

1 Year | 1 Credit | Physical Science

AP Physics 1 is a college level course for academically motivated students. This algebra based course includes the following physics topics: Velocity and Acceleration in Two Dimensions, Newtonian Mechanics, Universal Gravitation, Momentum and Angular Momentum, Rotational Dynamics, Energy, Power, Mechanical Waves, Sound, and Electric Circuits. AP Physics 1 is based on six Big Ideas, which encompass core scientific principles, theories, and processes that cut across traditional boundaries and provide a broad way of thinking about the physical world.

Laboratory activities will be designed to meet the standards of an average college physics course. A cumulative final exam will account for 20% of the fourth quarter grade.

AP Physics 1 is aligned and approved by the College Board Advanced Placement Program and is equivalent to one semester of college physics.  This course is offered every other year opposite AP Chemistry.

Prerequisites:  Students should have completed geometry and be concurrently taking Algebra II or an equivalent course. Although the Physics 1 course includes basic use of trigonometric functions, this understanding can be gained either in the concurrent math course or in the AP Physics 1 course itself. 

AP Computer Science A – Java

1 Year | 1 Credit

Grades 11-12 AP CSA is a full-year AP course geared towards 11th-12th graders who are serious about programming. Java requires a good mathematical background and strong problem-solving skills. The course will prepare students for the Advanced Placement Computer Science exam, level A. Students will learn to design and implement computer programs that solve problems relevant to today’s society, including art, media, and engineering.
AP Computer Science A teaches object-oriented programming using the Java language and is meant to be the equivalent of a first semester, college-level course in computer science. It will emphasize problem-solving and algorithm development, and use hands-on experiences and examples so that students can apply programming tools and solve complex problems.

Student Prerequisites: Algebra II, prior CS course is highly recommended.