This course furthers studentsโ€™ understanding of the processes that occur in biological systems. Students will study theory and conduct investigations in the areas of biodiversity; evolution; genetic processes; the structure and function of animals; and the anatomy, growth, and function of plants. The course focuses on the theoretical aspects of the topics under study, and helps students refine skills related to scientific investigation.


Overall Curriculum Expectations

By the end of this course the student will:

Scientific Investigation Skills and Career Exploration

  • Demonstrate scientific investigation skills (related to both inquiry and research) in the four areas of skills (initiating and planning, performing, and recording, analyzing, and interpreting, and communicating)
  • Identify and describe a variety of careers related to the fields of science under study, and identify scientists, including Canadians, who have made contributions to those fields.

Diversity of living Things

  • Analyse the effects of various human activities on the diversity of living things.
  • Investigate, through laboratory and/or field activities or through simulations, the principles of scientific classification, using appropriate sampling and classification techniques.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the diversity of living organisms in terms of the principles of taxonomy and phylogeny.


  • Analyse the economic and environmental advantages and disadvantages of an artificial selection technology and evaluate the impact of environmental changes on natural selection and endangered species.
  • Investigate evolutionary processes and analyses scientific evidence that supports the theory of evolution.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the theory of evolution, the evidence that supports it, and some of the mechanisms by which it occurs.

Genetic processes

  • Evaluate the importance of some recent contributions to our knowledge of genetic processes and analyses social and ethical implications of genetic and genomic research.
  • Investigates genetic processes, including those that occur during meiosis, and analyses data to solve basic genetic problems involving monohybrid and dihybrid crosses.
  • Demonstrates an understanding of concepts, processes, and technologies related to the transmission of hereditary characteristics.

Animals: Structure and Function

  • Analyse the relationships between changing societal needs, technological advances, and understanding of internal systems of humans.
  • Investigate, through laboratory inquiry or computer simulation, the functional responses of the respiratory, circulatory, and digestive systems.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of animal anatomy and physiology, and describe disorders of the respiratory, circulatory, and digestive systems.

Plants: Anatomy, Growth, and Function

  • Evaluate the importance of sustainable use of plants to Canadian society and other cultures.
  • Investigate the structures and functions of plant tissues, and factors affecting plants growth.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the diversity of vascular plants, including their structures, internal transport systems, and their role in maintaining biodiversity.

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