Junior and Senior High Scope and Sequence

Knowing which science courses to offer your student at the secondary level and when to offer them can seem difficult. In reality, course sequencing for junior high and high school isn’t that hard when you know one important fact: A student’s mathematics level is the key factor for his or her success or failure in the high school sciences. If you make sure that your child is well prepared mathematically for the science course he or she will take, you will have gone a long way toward assuring your student’s academic success.

Here is our recommended timeline for science courses:


Grade Not Science Oriented Science Oriented Math Prerequisites
7 General Science General Science None
8 Physical Science Physical Science 7th Grade Math
9 Biology* Biology None
10 Chemistry* Chemistry Algebra 1
11 Physics* Physics Algebra I, Geometry, Basic Trigonometry Functions
12 Adv. Biology or Adv. Chemistry or Adv. Physics or Marine Biology None Algebra II Pre-Calculus None


*An asterisk indicates that these 3 courses can be spread over 4 years for the student who is not science-oriented.

Your student's math level should drive this time line, especially if the student is science-oriented. When the student begins Algebra I, that's when Biology begins. Even if your student is not science-oriented, he or she will benefit from exposure to Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. You never know when a lifelong interest may be sparked!