BB&N’s Experimental Biology class is a great opportunity for anyone interested in biology who loves being in the lab! Students explore different concepts including the scientific method, photosynthesis, osmosis and diffusion, and cellular respiration. This year’s Experimental Biology class enjoyed designing their own experiments related to memory and the nervous system and examining how different variables affect the rate of photosynthesis as measured with spectrophotometers. In addition to conducting and designing experiments, students of the class write lab reports, present Google Slides presentations, and frequently collaborate with classmates on research projects. A highlight of this winter was learning about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) by researching the perspectives of different experts and then virtually meeting Gregory Pettys from PunPun Farms (see “Interdisciplinary Field Trip Brings Social and Natural Sciences Together”). Students also brought in their own food samples to test for genetic modification using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and gel electrophoresis.
The majority of the Experimental Biology course material is adapted from the lab manuals and textbook of the Advanced Placement (AP) Biology course; thus, Experimental Biology can be taken in conjunction with Advanced Biology to fully prepare students for the AP Biology exam. Students in the 11th and 12th grade who have taken Biology and Chemistry are eligible to take Experimental Biology after seeking approval from the Science Department. Look into Experimental Biology if you want to dive deeper into biological concepts through hands-on experiences in the lab!