The aim of Loyola High School’s Science Department is for all of our students to acquire the knowledge and skills of empirical inquiry so that they may better understand and live responsibly in the world God creates.
As Jesuit educators the Loyola Science Department is a component of the Ignatian vision that guides young people in the realization of their dignity, talents, and personal uniqueness. The Department seeks to challenge every student to become an ideal Graduate at Graduation: a graduate who is 1) Open to Growth; 2) Intellectually Distinguished; 3) Religious; 4) Loving; 5) Committed to Justice; and 6) Developing as a Leader. To do this, we challenge our students to engage their minds and nurture their ability to wonder and reason; and to apply scientific methods to reveal truth and beauty in nature while being good stewards.
The Loyola Science Department incorporates the goals of the Next Generation Science Standards. Practices, crosscutting concepts and disciplinary core ideas make up the framework of the NGSS.
Practices describe behaviors that scientists engage in as they investigate and build models and theories about the natural world and the key set of engineering practices that engineers use as they design and build models and systems.
Crosscutting concepts have application across all domains of science. As such, they are a way of linking the different domains of science. They include: Patterns, similarity, and diversity; Cause and effect; Scale, proportion and quantity; Systems and system models; Energy and matter; Structure and function; Stability and change.
To be considered core, the ideas should meet at least two of the following criteria and ideally all four:
- Have broad importance across multiple sciences or engineering disciplines or be a key organizing concept of a single discipline;
- Provide a key tool for understanding or investigating more complex ideas and solving problems;
- Relate to the interests and life experiences of students or be connected to societal or personal concerns that require scientific or technological knowledge;
- Be teachable and learnable over multiple grades at increasing levels of depth and sophistication.
Disciplinary ideas are grouped in four domains: the physical sciences; the life sciences; the earth and space sciences; and engineering, technology and applications of science.
Graduation Requirements (6 semesters)
Students are required to complete six semesters in full-year long laboratory science courses. All freshman take a full-year of Physics. Sophomores take Chemistry or Honors Chemistry. Juniors take Biology, AP Biology, AP Chemistry or AP Environmental Science, while seniors are not required to take a science although many decide to enroll in an additional science course (or two). The UC high school requirement is two years of laboratory science in two of these three subjects: biology, chemistry, or physics.