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So would Apologia be considered "dumbed down"? I ask because my son took the SATII test after taking a class with that text and going through a prep book and was really unprepared. He did fabulous in the class with 100% on almost all assignments. I think I have read here that others using Apologia had the same experience, and the other two students who took the test from my son's class were also unprepared (and they studied soooooo much more than him, with multiple prep books). I really don't know if it was the text or the teacher, though I have my suspicions about the teacher. :glare:

I am wondering if we should stick with Apologia or move on to something else for Chemistry.

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No experience with the SAT II, but my first question would be if the class did only the first text or both? My son has completed 18 hours of college chemistry and physics after using Apologia as our core (we did supplement with other sources). He did not do any of the "advanced" texts but was well prepared for college work. That said, he did see some topics for the first time in college which are covered in the second apologia texts--I doubt he'd have done well on the SAT II for that reason. He found that true for both chemistry and physics--and he did have to work somewhat harder to compensate. His chemistry instructor uses the NCE exam for finals, and ds did quite well so I'm fairly confident that his chem grades weren't flukes. His physics grades were excellent as well.

 

The people I've talked with who were pleased with their child's SAT II performance after using Apologia had completed both texts and done a lot of prep work.

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Did they use only one Apologia text in prep for the SAT II? If so, that's probably the problem right there. It's recommended that the regular Apologia text and the advanced text be used before taking the SAT II. The one text won't cover enough for the test. Apologia explains things very well and gives lots of practice. If you complete what you should and correct that work, you should do well on the tests. The idea is to understand the material. It's not "dumbed down" at all - it does explain concepts well. :)

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You have to use bio 1&2 plus a test prep book in order to be prepared for the SATii. It is an advanced placement type of test.

Faithe

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I don't consider it dumbed down but it is not meant for SAT or AP study alone. It is not college chemistry. The AP's and SAT 2's are designed to show who could skip the college prerequisite, not debating here whether or not that is a wise idea. Some schools give college credit for good scores on these exams, others not so much. So the level of difficulty is higher. AP classes are more rigorous than regular. But, that doesn't mean that what constitutes the breadth of regular high school chem is dumbed down. These exams are just tough, very specific, and different from most exams and so usually, except in dd's case, one needs a text that "teaches to the test". Dd used Apologia chem and advanced chem and then studied dh's college chem book on her own. She only missed two questions on the entire exam.

 

Success on these exams can also have a lot to do with personality and "cool" under pressure. I consider the AP chem test to be fairly brutal. I actually think it's worse than the physics exam. Dh and I, a couple of years ago in a fit of competitive spirit, each took AP physics practice exams to see who remembered their college physics better. We both did very well but I am sad to report DH definitely remembered more....pout, pout, pout. I also think the AP biology exam is scary and though Apologia is most certainly worthy of high school credit and a very solid for what should constitute biology for high school freshman, one would need more than that to pass it. It's a stout test!

 

That said, I still don't put that much stock into bubble tests as the measurement of success or failure or rigorousness for a curriculum. There has to be more to the evaluation process than bubblee testing and of course, retention of material always figures in as well.

 

For what it is worth, dd is a pre-med and paramedic student. We used Apologia Biology, Chem, Advanced Chem, and physics. She studied A & P from texts provided by her retired nursing professor grandmother and astronomy was from another company as well. She chose to read dh's college freshman college chem book. Between paramedic school and pre-med classes, she has taken no less than 15 credits per semester and up to 21. Here are her final grades from the last two semester's science college science courses ran the range from a low of 95% to a high of 114%. Paramedic school final written exam before beginning externship, 400 questions - 1.5 hours maximum (yes that's less than 30 seconds per question - you want your paramedic to think on his or her feet very, very rapidly and embrace high stress situations calmly and cooly) - covered pharmacology, pediatrics, trauma, cardiology, neurology, ethics, obstetrics, and hazmat - 98%. (INSERT BIG GRIN FROM A PROUD MAMMA!)

 

From our perspective, Apologia did just fine preparing her. But, I do need to say this. We are a science oriented household and we've never implemented a science curriculum of any kind that we did not add to with a lot of our own reading, discussions, and projects. That's just who we are...ridiculous science geeks. So, it wouldn't really matter what "rigorous" science curriculum was recommended by anyone with AP or SAT testing experience or from the WTM board, it wouldn't be enough by our standards. It might pass our muster as a good jumping off spot, a place to begin and run with the topics. That is us. So maybe our success with Apologia also has a lot to do with how we implement it and what we do with it or our children's natural inclinations to explore and read more. DD, who loves a good conversation with any science geek, responded well to its conversational style and yet that is a problem for other kids.

 

The AP's and SAT's take a lot of studying besides just completing the text and getting an A. Seriously, if a student took an AP class and got a good grade it still will not mean success on that test. It is a truly difficult test and requires tremendous study habits and retention of information plus fast memory recall because in my opinion, they are a little too stingy on the time.

 

I'd also like to say that I don't think that all of the AP's and SAT's are that difficult. My 12 year old, having been educated WTM style out of a rotation of Story of the World and then two years of outlining, note-taking, and discussions from The Kingfisher History Encyclopedia plus watching some documentaries and discussing history like a geek but with NO prep work whatsoever, missed acing by one question the current AP World History exam presently online for free practice. He sat it for fun. No AP class, no AP approved text book...just good old Story of the World and Kingfisher which by any high school standard would be considered "dumbed down" for that age range. So, some of the exams aren't always that hard.

 

Faith

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You have to use bio 1&2 plus a test prep book in order to be prepared for the SATii. It is an advanced placement type of test.

Faithe

 

This is the second time I have seen someone say this here recently, and it's new to me and different than what I've heard or read up to this point.

 

Can someone who has experience with both in the same science subject comment on this? I don't know why College Board would offer both the SAT-II and AP in the same areas if they cover the same material? And how could colleges require several SAT-II subjects tests since not all students can take AP classes?

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For the sake of clarity, I would like to note that AP exams and SAT subject exams are two different animals. An AP class is supposed to be equivalent to college level coursework whereas SAT Subjects are given on high school content.

 

That said, students who take SAT subject tests are usually students who are planning on applying to competitive universities. This alone raises the bar on the exam. As has been noted, often students take an SAT subject exam in the sciences after they have taken the AP exam but the AP course is not a requirement for SAT subject material.

 

Because of the variety of text books on the market, it is not clear to me if any one book completely reflects the content of any College Board exam. Text books have their own variation and emphasis which is why most students have to work their way through a prep book or two to be successful on the standardized exams.

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The SAT-II tests are meant to test a student's high school level understanding of the subject. The SAT-II's are NOT equivalent to AP exams, which are meant to test students' college-level understanding of a subject.

 

Some students do take the science SAT2's after taking an AP course, but it is quite possible to take a rigorous high school science class (non-AP) and do well on the SAT-II.

 

To date, my kids have taken a total of seven science SAT-II's. Some of the SAT-II's were taken after an AP course and some were taken after a one-year non-AP course. With a rigorous textbook and diligent work, an able student can score extremely well on an SAT-II exam without having had an AP class in the subject.

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You have to use bio 1&2 plus a test prep book in order to be prepared for the SATii. It is an advanced placement type of test.

Faithe

 

This is the second time I have seen someone say this here recently, and it's new to me and different than what I've heard or read up to this point.

 

Can someone who has experience with both in the same science subject comment on this? I don't know why College Board would offer both the SAT-II and AP in the same areas if they cover the same material? And how could colleges require several SAT-II subjects tests since not all students can take AP classes?

 

My son took both the AP Bio exam and the SAT subject test in Biology.

 

The AP exam is about three hours in length and consists of multiple choice and free response (essay) questions. The SAT subject test is 50 minutes of multiple choice questions.

 

As I noted in another post, the content of the AP exam is college level and includes twelve particular labs (or I should say included--the Bio exam is going to be changed).

 

My son found that the SAT subject test in biology seemed to emphasize some different topics than his AP exam, but this could have been luck of the draw. None of these exams can completely cover the full content of a year long course so there is always luck of the draw involved.

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My son took both the AP Bio exam and the SAT subject test in Biology.

 

The AP exam is about three hours in length and consists of multiple choice and free response (essay) questions. The SAT subject test is 50 minutes of multiple choice questions.

 

As I noted in another post, the content of the AP exam is college level and includes twelve particular labs (or I should say included--the Bio exam is going to be changed).

 

My son found that the SAT subject test in biology seemed to emphasize some different topics than his AP exam, but this could have been luck of the draw. None of these exams can completely cover the full content of a year long course so there is always luck of the draw involved.

 

 

Just to clarify as I'm sure it was just a typo, the SAT subject tests are 60 minutes. :)

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Yup. Gwen is right.

An SAT II is designed to follow a solid high-school level course. An AP test is designed to demonstrate mastery of college-level material.

 

A good SAT II score demonstrates to colleges that a student has had a good high school level course.

A good AP scores demonstrates to colleges that a student has had a good college-level course.

 

Kids who take the SAT II after an AP class and test tend to do better than the kids who have just taken the high-school level course. So yes, they tend to bend the curve a bit. But the SAT II test is designed to test material that a high-school level course should cover. That means the College Board is trying to set a standard for what a high school level course should cover. If you want to choose curriculum that will prepare your kids for certain tests, it's up to you as the "curriculum development team for your tiny personal 'district'" to find out what those tests want. The College Board designs the test, and they also produce an official book that lists the content found on the test. Spend some time with the CB book and the curriculum. Dig. Really! I would highly recommend it, and it's really not that hard. (I have found it very helpful for understanding some of the goals out there for high school subjects. VERY helpful - I want my kids to enter the river for college so it helps to understand the landscape. I've found it immensely helpful to just go look at the landscape rather than talk about it. It really isn't as hard to figure out as I thought it would be.) Your library probably has the official SAT II CB book. Find out what you need to know, and then choose curriculum that meets your goals. OR adjust your goals.

 

Peace,

Janice

 

Enjoy your little people

Enjoy your journey

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Ok, that's what I thought.

 

My girls are taking the SAT-II in Bio in October. They used BJU with the DIVE this year, and I got them a bunch of prep materials and practice tests. They did very well on the practice tests, for what that's worth, without much help from the prep books, which they said covered the same material they had had. They have no plans to take the Bio AP exam, so they are knocking out the SAT-II test while it is fresh.

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So would Apologia be considered "dumbed down"?

 

No, I wouldn't say that Apologia is "dumbed down", but my son had a similar experience with the Chemistry SAT2 & Apologia Chemistry (the 1st book). He completed the first book, which Apologia advertises as a 1-year introductory high school course, used several prep books, and still did poorly on the exam.

 

In reflecting on his studies, I discovered several things:

-- the Apologia book didn't cover some topics, like pH, in enough depth

-- the structure/problem sets/teaching style of the book was more prone to showing a student how to do a specific type of problems than it was to helping students gain a conceptual understanding of the topics. In our experience, a student who memorizes well can do well in the course but then not really understand the underlying principles.

-- my son went on to take General Chem at the CC and did very well. He wasn't poorly prepared for the college chem course, but was very poorly prepared for the SAT2.

-- if your goal is a good score on the SAT2, choose something else. If you're looking for a basic high school science course, Apologia is OK.

 

No experience with the SAT II, but my first question would be if the class did only the first text or both?

The people I've talked with who were pleased with their child's SAT II performance after using Apologia had completed both texts and done a lot of prep work.

 

This was a main beef of mine WRT Apologia. When I was looking for a Chemistry course several years ago, no where did I read on Apologia's website that a student needs both courses to do well on the SAT2. Do they advertise this somewhere? I was going by Apologia's assertion that their 1st book was a 1-year introductory, high school-level course, and the College Board's assertion that their exam tests the knowledge typically covered in a 1-year introductory, high school-level course.

 

Some students do take the science SAT2s after taking an AP course, but it is quite possible to take a rigorous high school science class (non-AP) and do well on the SAT-II.

 

Take a look at the Prentice Hall texts that Kolbe uses. I've read several accounts of students using these and then doing well on the SAT2, but you'll need to cover the entire book and also use a prep book.

 

After our debacle with Chemistry, my son used Giancoli Physics the following year, and did well on the SAT2 Physics test.

 

Kids who take the SAT II after an AP class and test tend to do better than the kids who have just taken the high-school level course. So yes, they tend to bend the curve a bit. But the SAT II test is designed to test material that a high-school level course should cover. That means the College Board is trying to set a standard for what a high school level course should cover. If you want to choose curriculum that will prepare your kids for certain tests, it's up to you as the "curriculum development team for your tiny personal 'district'" to find out what those tests want. The College Board designs the test, and they also produce an official book that lists the content found on the test. Spend some time with the CB book and the curriculum. Dig. Really! I would highly recommend it, and it's really not that hard. (I have found it very helpful for understanding some of the goals out there for high school subjects. VERY helpful - I want my kids to enter the river for college so it helps to understand the landscape. I've found it immensely helpful to just go look at the landscape rather than talk about it. It really isn't as hard to figure out as I thought it would be.) Your library probably has the official SAT II CB book. Find out what you need to know, and then choose curriculum that meets your goals. OR adjust your goals.

 

Peace,

Janice

 

The fact that a lot of SAT2 test takers have also taken AP courses doesn't help the situation because the College Board fits the results of these tests to a bell-curve. Unfortunately, there isn't much you can do about this.

 

Janice -- you're definitely correct here. People should carefully look at the texts they are planning to use. However, I did look over the Apologia Chem book (not thoroughly enough, I admit), but I still think it's often difficult to get a sense of the teaching "style" and approach from just looking through the book. Since that issue we had, I've relied more on the experiences of people from this board in helping me choose texts. I've given up on taking the word of the publisher and their website because their main goal is marketing their materials.

 

I am personally glad that there are a lot of choices out there for science texts. Undoubtedly, each book is a good choice for some student somewhere given his/her specific goals. The tough part comes when we have to wade through the advice, ads, etc. to come up with the best fit for our own children. That's why we get paid the big bucks!:D

 

Brenda

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The SAT-II tests are meant to test a student's high school level understanding of the subject. The SAT-II's are NOT equivalent to AP exams, which are meant to test students' college-level understanding of a subject.

 

Some students do take the science SAT2's after taking an AP course, but it is quite possible to take a rigorous high school science class (non-AP) and do well on the SAT-II.

 

To date, my kids have taken a total of seven science SAT-II's. Some of the SAT-II's were taken after an AP course and some were taken after a one-year non-AP course. With a rigorous textbook and diligent work, an able student can score extremely well on an SAT-II exam without having had an AP class in the subject.

 

:iagree::iagree: Mine have taken only two SAT II exams, but I am disturbed that people here seem to keep equating them with AP. It is simply not true. They are designed to test high school level material, not college level material like the AP exams.

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So would Apologia be considered "dumbed down"? I ask because my son took the SATII test after taking a class with that text and going through a prep book and was really unprepared. He did fabulous in the class with 100% on almost all assignments. I think I have read here that others using Apologia had the same experience, and the other two students who took the test from my son's class were also unprepared (and they studied soooooo much more than him, with multiple prep books). I really don't know if it was the text or the teacher, though I have my suspicions about the teacher. :glare:

 

 

I had my brother, a high school biology teacher, look at the Apologia Biology books' TOCs a while ago. He said it didn't cover huge portions of what he covers in his high school courses, and it was specifically missing the things he puts the most emphasis on. The "honors" addition is just human anatomy, which is not what he was referring to being missing. (The lack seemed mostly to be genetics, microbiology and biochemistry - I won't bother mentioning evolution as I know anyone who's looking at Apologia probably doesn't want that ;)).

 

The Apologia texts seem to rely very heavily on classification (and in the extra book, anatomy), which are not as emphasized in most high school courses these days, in favor of genetics, microbiology and biochemistry.

 

Here's a comparison of Campbell's Exploring Life, used in many entry-level high school biology classes, and Apologia.

 

Exploring Life: 36 chapters

Introduction & Scientific method: 3 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 5 chapters

Genetics: 5 chapters

Evolution: 2 chapters

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 4 chapters

Classification: 4 chapters

Human anatomy: 7 chapters

Ecology: 3 chapters

 

Apologia (including Advanced): 32 chapters/modules

Introduction & Scientific method: 2 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 1 chapter

Genetics: 2 chapters

Evolution: 1 chapter

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 1 chapter

Classification: 5 chapters

Human anatomy: 16 chapters (all 16 chapters of the 'Advanced Biology' are devoted to this)

Ecology: 1 chapter

 

Cellular/microbiolgy/genetics take up 6/32 chapters of Apologia vs. 13/36 of Exploring Life. I only have access to the TOC of Apologia, but I wonder how much biochemical detail they go into with things like cellular respiration, photosynthesis and fermentation, which are explained to a very high level of detail in EL. The genetics unit in EL also contains a whole chapter on genetic engineering and gene splicing, and another chapter on mutations, which don't seem to be touched upon in Apologia.

 

EL is also not an AP or college level course, it's an introductory high school course. Apologia claims that if you include their Advanced (human body) book, it's equivalent to an AP or college level course, when in reality it doesn't even contain much of the information in the high school introductory EL book.

 

Again, haven't actually held an Apologia text in my hands, but knowing what's emphasized in current high school level classes (and by extension I'd think on SAT2 tests), and not finding this emphasis in the Apologia text, I'd guess that's where the disconnect between the course and the texts is coming from. I'm not trying to diss the books based on Creation/Evolution here, but trying to offer an explanation as to why this book might not be enough preparation for those tests.

 

And I have a really hard time seeing how Apologia can claim this as an AP level text. AP biology is not adding an anatomy unit. :confused:

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I had my brother, a high school biology teacher, look at the Apologia Biology books' TOCs a while ago. He said it didn't cover huge portions of what he covers in his high school courses, and it was specifically missing the things he puts the most emphasis on. The "honors" addition is just human anatomy, which is not what he was referring to being missing. (The lack seemed mostly to be genetics, microbiology and biochemistry - I won't bother mentioning evolution as I know anyone who's looking at Apologia probably doesn't want that ;)).

 

 

 

Snipping your post but I think you illustrate a point that I have preached often.

 

Today's biology is not the biology that many of us had in high school. My biology class had an emphasis on taxonomy and systematics. Today's biology begins with biochemistry (something that biology majors of yore did not see until later in college courses!) and cellular function.

 

I wonder if this might be part of the problem when parents evaluate high school biology programs. They might see something that looks like their former high school course with the assorted dissections that they did. Biological discovery has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few decades. The focus has changed.

 

The AP people have recognized that there is too much material that has been required for the biology exam so they are revamping it. But I suspect that the key themes which include Biochemical Regulation, Energy Transfer, Evolution, Interdependence, etc. will not change.

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Wow, this has been very eye opening! Thank you for all the responses. Maybe we will do a Biology 2 class and use a more advanced text? He is desperately trying to avoid Physics ;).

I also find it interesting that DIVE gives options of Apologia Chemistry, both books or first book with extensive added websites, or just one year of the Bob Jones book, with no websites added (I think one added website with the 3rd ed, none with 2nd ed).

We were all set to take a class with our homeschool group again this year. The teacher is a homeschool dad who happens to teach Chemistry at the local college. He is going to use Apologia, but mostly it will just be the lab work-he is not giving tests or homework, but may lecture some.

I'm wondering how it work to do the labs there and use a different text. Would it be that big a deal if they did not match up exactly? Maybe I should just try to do it at home, though I have to admit that scares me! :D don't know why-I absolutely loved Chemistry in hs and college. I think I am just afraid the labs won't get done with our crazy life-somehow I picture my 4dd getting into the chemicals and either eating them or blowing the house up :tongue_smilie:

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Snipping your post but I think you illustrate a point that I have preached often.

 

Today's biology is not the biology that many of us had in high school. My biology class had an emphasis on taxonomy and systematics. Today's biology begins with biochemistry (something that biology majors of yore did not see until later in college courses!) and cellular function.

 

I wonder if this might be part of the problem when parents evaluate high school biology programs. They might see something that looks like their former high school course with the assorted dissections that they did. Biological discovery has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few decades. The focus has changed.

 

That makes sense. I was :blink: at the first few chapters of BJU Biology. It was definitely much more than I had in my Honors Bio class way back when. But they really liked it and learned a lot, and it ended up being a lot of what they saw in the SAT-II prep books.

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This is the second time I have seen someone say this here recently, and it's new to me and different than what I've heard or read up to this point.

 

Can someone who has experience with both in the same science subject comment on this? I don't know why College Board would offer both the SAT-II and AP in the same areas if they cover the same material? And how could colleges require several SAT-II subjects tests since not all students can take AP classes?

 

 

The SAT II = you have mastered a highschool level subject. AP = you have mastered a college level subject.

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Here's a comparison of Campbell's Exploring Life, used in many entry-level high school biology classes, and Apologia.

 

Exploring Life: 36 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 5 chapters

Genetics: 5 chapters

 

Apologia (including Advanced): 32 chapters/modules

Cell structure and Biology: 1 chapter

Genetics: 2 chapters

:confused:

 

Very very interesting!!! When son was going through the genetics chapters I was so disappointed in their explainations of this subject matter. I had to do a lot of extra teaching on this as I knew it didn't cover the depth that it needed to. The Mand. Table wasn't explained very well in my opinion. Again, I had to do a lot of teaching on this as well including getting a seperate genetic book on top of this.

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Very very interesting!!! When son was going through the genetics chapters I was so disappointed in their explainations of this subject matter. I had to do a lot of extra teaching on this as I knew it didn't cover the depth that it needed to. The Mand. Table wasn't explained very well in my opinion. Again, I had to do a lot of teaching on this as well including getting a seperate genetic book on top of this.

 

My son recently took the ACT. He said there was a section on bio that had a TON of stuff he didn't recall covering (Genetics was one of those things). It's been a few years since he did biology though, and I didn't keep the book. We'll be using Holt this year with our rising 9th grader (with the Oak Meadow syllabus).

 

Has anyone really thought about Apologia Biology being written by a guy with a chemistry degree? When that dawned on me, I started looking around for something else.

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My son recently took the ACT. He said there was a section on bio that had a TON of stuff he didn't recall covering (Genetics was one of those things). It's been a few years since he did biology though, and I didn't keep the book. We'll be using Holt this year with our rising 9th grader (with the Oak Meadow syllabus).

 

Has anyone really thought about Apologia Biology being written by a guy with a chemistry degree? When that dawned on me, I started looking around for something else.

 

That's something I asked him about. He had a co-author for the first edition Bio text but I don't remember her credentials. I'm not sure about the second edition.

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Dh and I, a couple of years ago in a fit of competitive spirit, each took AP physics practice exams to see who remembered their college physics better.

:lol: I'd like to be a fly on the wall during a dinner conversation at your house.

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My dd did DIVE Chemistry with the Apologia Chemistry book. There were many instances where what was covered on the DIVE CD or the vocabulary to look up were not in the Apologia book and she would have to go to other sources to find the info. She wishes we had used the BJU book. The only reason she was using the Apologia text was because she was taking an outside lab that used the book. Next time around the other kids will use a different textbook.

 

Yvonne in NE

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Do any of you know if the information in the Biology section of Kahn Academy covers more of what is needed (in addition to using Apologia) for the SATII test?

Thanks.

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:lol: I'd like to be a fly on the wall during a dinner conversation at your house.

 

Well, you'd probably be scared! :D With one "adult" child and three male offspring all of whom are singularly obssessed with sending flaming objects into space, plus, and this is a biggie, a 4-H science club of pre-teens and young teens all of whom follow dh's mad scientist tendancies with rapture, I end up being the quality assurance inspector. That's my job! I'm OSCHA, HAZMAT, Security, and Central Intelligence all wrapped into one. I have sole control over the matches and all chemical concoctions are inspected by me before heat may be applied! We've had flaming magnesium goo flying across the lawn, ethanol brewing in the distillery (oh, and this was done as a science project with 30 kids in the church fellowship hall so our pastor walked through on a Friday night while we were cleaning up and asked, "Why does the church smell like a brewery?" Thankfully, the man is a serious science geek as well and took the news with great humor.)

 

The conversations are, uhmm, interesting though too many of them some how, some way, involve Star Wars and Star Trek.

 

Faith

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I had my brother, a high school biology teacher, look at the Apologia Biology books' TOCs a while ago. He said it didn't cover huge portions of what he covers in his high school courses, and it was specifically missing the things he puts the most emphasis on. The "honors" addition is just human anatomy, which is not what he was referring to being missing. (The lack seemed mostly to be genetics, microbiology and biochemistry - I won't bother mentioning evolution as I know anyone who's looking at Apologia probably doesn't want that ;)).

 

The Apologia texts seem to rely very heavily on classification (and in the extra book, anatomy), which are not as emphasized in most high school courses these days, in favor of genetics, microbiology and biochemistry.

 

Here's a comparison of Campbell's Exploring Life, used in many entry-level high school biology classes, and Apologia.

 

Exploring Life: 36 chapters

Introduction & Scientific method: 3 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 5 chapters

Genetics: 5 chapters

Evolution: 2 chapters

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 4 chapters

Classification: 4 chapters

Human anatomy: 7 chapters

Ecology: 3 chapters

 

Apologia (including Advanced): 32 chapters/modules

Introduction & Scientific method: 2 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 1 chapter

Genetics: 2 chapters

Evolution: 1 chapter

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 1 chapter

Classification: 5 chapters

Human anatomy: 16 chapters (all 16 chapters of the 'Advanced Biology' are devoted to this)

Ecology: 1 chapter

 

Cellular/microbiolgy/genetics take up 6/32 chapters of Apologia vs. 13/36 of Exploring Life. I only have access to the TOC of Apologia, but I wonder how much biochemical detail they go into with things like cellular respiration, photosynthesis and fermentation, which are explained to a very high level of detail in EL. The genetics unit in EL also contains a whole chapter on genetic engineering and gene splicing, and another chapter on mutations, which don't seem to be touched upon in Apologia.

 

EL is also not an AP or college level course, it's an introductory high school course. Apologia claims that if you include their Advanced (human body) book, it's equivalent to an AP or college level course, when in reality it doesn't even contain much of the information in the high school introductory EL book.

 

Again, haven't actually held an Apologia text in my hands, but knowing what's emphasized in current high school level classes (and by extension I'd think on SAT2 tests), and not finding this emphasis in the Apologia text, I'd guess that's where the disconnect between the course and the texts is coming from. I'm not trying to diss the books based on Creation/Evolution here, but trying to offer an explanation as to why this book might not be enough preparation for those tests.

 

And I have a really hard time seeing how Apologia can claim this as an AP level text. AP biology is not adding an anatomy unit. :confused:

 

I just want to thank you for this post. My only experience with Bio has been Apologia (chosen at home) and Glencoe (what our ps uses). I can tell you between those two that Apologia is far superior in depth, but I have a Bio loving son who plans to major in Botany in college. He reads Bio books for fun. I'm guessing he'd love a copy of Campbell's book for pleasure reading.

 

I'm probably also going to have him take the SAT 2 test in Bio as our ps is not well known for producing top grads. Kiddo wants to go to the University of Hawaii since they have several Ethno-Botany courses. Having a good SAT 2 score could be quite beneficial for him.

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Here's a comparison of Campbell's Exploring Life, used in many entry-level high school biology classes, and Apologia.

 

Exploring Life: 36 chapters

Introduction & Scientific method: 3 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 5 chapters

Genetics: 5 chapters

Evolution: 2 chapters

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 4 chapters

Classification: 4 chapters

Human anatomy: 7 chapters

Ecology: 3 chapters

 

 

 

Any chance you (or anyone) has the ISBN for this. I'd love to get him the Teacher's Edition as it usually has interesting notes and such - plus, we don't need to do it as a course - just for fun reading for him. Are their older editions that are just as good as the newest?

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Any chance you (or anyone) has the ISBN for this. I'd love to get him the Teacher's Edition as it usually has interesting notes and such - plus, we don't need to do it as a course - just for fun reading for him. Are their older editions that are just as good as the newest?

 

The ISBN for the book is 0-13-062592-2. Unfortunately, unlike the oh-so-helpful Lial's math series, it does not list the ISBNs for the other components anywhere that I can find (although they're both published by Prentice Hall/Pearson).

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Here's a comparison of Campbell's Exploring Life, used in many entry-level high school biology classes, and Apologia.

 

Exploring Life: 36 chapters

Introduction & Scientific method: 3 chapters

Cell structure and Biology: 5 chapters

Genetics: 5 chapters

Evolution: 2 chapters

Microbial Biology: 3 chapters

Plant Biology: 4 chapters

Classification: 4 chapters

Human anatomy: 7 chapters

Ecology: 3 chapters

 

:

I am wonderig what would you use for Bio 2 if you used this????

 

Holly

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I am wonderig what would you use for Bio 2 if you used this????

 

Holly

 

I would use the big Campbell and plan for the AP Exam if we decide to do another year of Biology after Exploring Life.

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I am wonderig what would you use for Bio 2 if you used this????

 

Holly

 

There are college-level Campbell books that are used for AP - I think one is just called "Biology" and the other one is "Concepts and Connections".

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My dd just passed the Chemistry Clep after using Apologia Chemistry and then Apologia AP Chem. I don't know how it compares with the AP Chem exam, but I would not attempt any exams without going through both books.

 

She is scheduled to take the SAT II for Chemistry in the fall. Her plan is to complete the Apologia AP Chem book and then keep reviewing to keep it all "fresh".

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Any chance you (or anyone) has the ISBN for this. I'd love to get him the Teacher's Edition as it usually has interesting notes and such - plus, we don't need to do it as a course - just for fun reading for him. Are their older editions that are just as good as the newest?

The ISBN on my 2006 Teacher's Edition is 0132508834. There is one newer edition (which is sadly the last edition Pearson will ever issue), and the rep at Pearson told me the only changes were updated links and such (no text changes). There are copies of the 2006 TE on Amazon priced from $8 used to $20 new.

 

Jackie

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Today's biology is not the biology that many of us had in high school. My biology class had an emphasis on taxonomy and systematics. Today's biology begins with biochemistry (something that biology majors of yore did not see until later in college courses!) and cellular function.

 

I wonder if this might be part of the problem when parents evaluate high school biology programs. They might see something that looks like their former high school course with the assorted dissections that they did. Biological discovery has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few decades. The focus has changed.

 

 

 

When I taught at a local charter school a couple of years ago, the science teacher commented during a faculty meeting about biology not being "hands-on" and so afterwards I asked her what she meant, since of course when I was in high school, biology was the most hands-on of any subject! She explained what you said, that's it mainly biochem now and very difficult, especially for the younger high schoolers.

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The ISBN on my 2006 Teacher's Edition is 0132508834. There is one newer edition (which is sadly the last edition Pearson will ever issue), and the rep at Pearson told me the only changes were updated links and such (no text changes). There are copies of the 2006 TE on Amazon priced from $8 used to $20 new.

 

Jackie

 

Thanks, but now I'm wondering if I should go up a notch and get him the AP book instead. He's already completed Biology at school and did well on both the teacher's exam and the state Keystone test using the combo of Apologia (his preference) and Glencoe (a less in depth book according to him). Since there's a more in depth AP version, it seems a bit more logical to go that route than another intro to Bio book.

 

Does anyone have an ISBN for a teacher's edition to that? Again, this is mainly for pleasure reading for him. He'd love the extra facts in the margin of a TE. (He loves this type of pleasure reading - it's fiction books I have to force him to read.)

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Hi!

 

I don't know if anyone else knows about this, but Debra Bell is starting classes that are geared toward the SAT II tests.

 

Deb's team is offering several levels of classes next year. The gal who is teaching the biology class uses the Miller/Levine text. According to her biography, she has been prepping kids to do well on the biology SAT II for years. I believe this is her first year teaching her course on-line. But it might be an option - at least the course is targeting those standardized tests.

 

IMO, it's high time such an option was offered in the hsing community. I just had NO idea how much those standardized test scores mattered to colleges. No one wanted to hear anything about my kid until he kicked the door open with a strong SAT math score; then we had an audience. THEN they wanted to know what made my kid different from the pack, but before he hurdled the number? Crickets!

 

Peace,

Janice

 

Enjoy your little people

Enjoy your journey

 

http://debrabell.com/online-classes/

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So, I've been reading all your posts-and I'm still confused.

 

If I use Apologia Chem 1 and 2, will I be sufficiently prepared for the SAT II exam, considering that I'll also use prep books?

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I don't know if anyone else knows about this, but Debra Bell is starting classes that are geared toward the SAT II tests.

 

I didn't know about these -- thanks so much for posting!

 

Deb's team is offering several levels of classes next year. The gal who is teaching the biology class uses the Miller/Levine text. According to her biography, she has been prepping kids to do well on the biology SAT II for years. I believe this is her first year teaching her course on-line. But it might be an option - at least the course is targeting those standardized tests.

 

IMO, it's high time such an option was offered in the hsing community. I just had NO idea how much those standardized test scores mattered to colleges. No one wanted to hear anything about my kid until he kicked the door open with a strong SAT math score; then we had an audience. THEN they wanted to know what made my kid different from the pack, but before he hurdled the number? Crickets!

 

:iagree:

 

Janice, I couldn't agree more. My kids have taken some fantastic courses -- Classical Greek & Roman Lit with a tutor, and a quantum chemistry class in Berkeley, to give just two examples -- but at the end of the day, they need to have something to show for at least some of their studies, not having a (semi-)objective GPA like traditionally schooled students. Then the colleges will look at the whole package. Thanks for sharing your experience -- it confirms my strong hunch!

 

~Laura

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Any chance you (or anyone) has the ISBN for this. I'd love to get him the Teacher's Edition as it usually has interesting notes and such - plus, we don't need to do it as a course - just for fun reading for him. Are their older editions that are just as good as the newest?

 

Amazon has a CD that contains online activities (for use at home or when the internet is not available) and a Learning Log for Online Activities.

 

I haven't used these, but ran into them while searching.

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She is scheduled to take the SAT II for Chemistry in the fall. Her plan is to complete the Apologia AP Chem book and then keep reviewing to keep it all "fresh".

 

I don't believe there is an Apologia AP Chemistry book.

 

Regards,

Kareni

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Janice, I couldn't agree more. My kids have taken some fantastic courses -- Classical Greek & Roman Lit with a tutor, and a quantum chemistry class in Berkeley, to give just two examples -- but at the end of the day, they need to have something to show for at least some of their studies, not having a (semi-)objective GPA like traditionally schooled students. Then the colleges will look at the whole package. Thanks for sharing your experience -- it confirms my strong hunch!

 

~Laura

:iagree:, too. But, oh how it makes me sad to have to forgo some excellent courses and learning opportunities for my son just so he can have some things on his transcript that colleges will understand. Makes me pine for the pre-high school days when it was totally up to me what we covered and how much of it. Sigh...

 

Brenda

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I hear you, Brenda. Just one more case where we have to stand with one foot on two different islands.

 

It's a good thing we're used to doing it all, eh? :001_smile:

 

Peace,

Janice

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For the sake of clarity, I would like to note that AP exams and SAT subject exams are two different animals. An AP class is supposed to be equivalent to college level coursework whereas SAT Subjects are given on high school content.

 

That said, students who take SAT subject tests are usually students who are planning on applying to competitive universities. This alone raises the bar on the exam. As has been noted, often students take an SAT subject exam in the sciences after they have taken the AP exam but the AP course is not a requirement for SAT subject material.

 

 

With my dd2, an art-oriented student, I've been trying to emphasize that she is taking the SAT II test to show that she has covered the subject at a high school level, not to compete with students who want to major in the subject at college. Dd1 took the chemistry SAT II the same year she took AP chemistry because she was freaking out about the AP. She scored 770 -- and a 4 on the AP.

 

I do not anticipate dd2 doing as well despite honors chemistry. The test scores are definitely skewed by AP students.

 

Just my perspective

~Moira

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Can someone help me out here? My ds is a rising 10th grader who loves science, history/literature, and creative writing but hates math. He just finished Biology using Glencoe Biology: The Dynamics of Life the fall semester and CK12 this spring.

 

We planned to leave off the human anatomy chapters and save them for our Anatomy & Physiology class but now I am wondering should he be using a more advanced Biology book or A&P book instead? He also plans to take Forensic Chemistry and Conceptual Physics. All of these will have labs.

 

He is not sure what he wants to do but he plans to take CLEP and SAT Subject Test but not sure with AP. He will also dual enroll jr and sr year. Can someone help me figure this out?

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Can someone help me out here? My ds is a rising 10th grader who loves science, history/literature, and creative writing but hates math. He just finished Biology using Glencoe Biology: The Dynamics of Life the fall semester and CK12 this spring.

 

We planned to leave off the human anatomy chapters and save them for our Anatomy & Physiology class but now I am wondering should he be using a more advanced Biology book or A&P book instead? He also plans to take Forensic Chemistry and Conceptual Physics. All of these will have labs.

 

He is not sure what he wants to do but he plans to take CLEP and SAT Subject Test but not sure with AP. He will also dual enroll jr and sr year. Can someone help me figure this out?

 

If you're wondering what to cover to take the SAT 2, I'd get a prep book. That would go into detail.

 

But if he's dual enrolling at college in high school, he likely wouldn't even need the SAT 2 tests. The SAT 2 is only needed for a few colleges. Most colleges don't require them. You should check if any on his radar are the colleges that do.

 

Many homeschoolers do the SAT 2's even if the colleges don't require them because they want a record that the student learned the material. However, if your son will have dual enrollment credits, this isn't as necessary -- even if he doesn't take courses in the area that he would have taken an SAT 2 in. If it comes down to having to choose between a dual enrollment course and an SAT 2, I'd definitely go with the course. Colleges will see that as more material covered, at a higher level than the SAT test, with the added bonus of seeing that the student could negotiate the classroom experience.

 

Well, unless he does really bad in the dual enrollment, but my guess is that high SAT 2 scores aren't going to do much to help overcome that anyway.

 

CLEP is generally done once a student is in college to place out of classes (although there might be an argument for doing it now if he knows the material now). There are a lot of colleges that don't accept CLEP. If your son has college credit on his transcript, the CLEP for that subject generally won't do him any additional good at all.

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I don't think it's dumbed down but I don't think it's an "advanced" class either, as you would expect for SAT II's.

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