BIOLOGY Biology, a one-credit course, is a laboratory-based course that is designed to build a life science foundation emphasizing patterns, processes, and interactions among organisms. Students are expected to master conceptual understandings based on both individual investigations and the investigations conducted by others. Individual learning experiences are used to support claims and engage in evidence-based arguments. In this way, students explore the organization of life; the interdependence between organisms and their environment; the chemical composition of life; the role of DNA, RNA, and protein in cellular structure and function; inheritance; and evolution. Local resources coupled with external resources, including evidence-based literature, will be used to extend and increase the complexity of these core ideas. The nature of science refers to the foundational concepts that govern the way scientists formulate explanations about the natural world to increase the depth of understanding based on evidence, logic, and innovation. These concepts are expected to appear throughout the course. As a laboratory-based course, students are expected to utilize science and engineering practices to design and conduct investigations using appropriate equipment, measurement (SI units), and safety procedures. Students should also design data tables and draw conclusions using mathematical computations and/or graphical analysis. The recommendation is that students should be actively engaged in inquiry activities, lab experiences, and scientific research (projects) for a minimum of 30% of class time. The standards and performance objectives do not have to be taught in the order presented in this document. The performance objectives are intentionally broad to allow school districts and teachers the flexibility to create a curriculum that meets the needs of their students. Objectives identified by “Enrichment:” are considered enrichment material that may be expanded upon as time permits. Engineering standards are represented in some performance objectives with specific wording that will prompt students to approach learning and exploration using the engineering process. These performance objectives are marked with an * at the end of the statement.