Principles of the Biomedical Science

Course Description

In the introductory course of the PLTW Biomedical Science program, students explore concepts of biology and medicine to determine the factors that led to the death of a fictional person. While investigating the case, students examine autopsy reports, investigate medical history, and explore medical treatments that might have prolonged the person’s life. The activities and projects introduce students to human physiology, basic biology, medicine, and research processes while allowing them to design their own experiments to solve problems. 

Key Course Learning Experiences

Learning experiences will include lab experiences, modeling, presentations and various activities. Some of the  topics of the learning experiences are listed below.

1.1 - Investigating the Scene

1.2 - DNA Analysis

1.3 - The Findings

2.1 - What Is Diabetes

2.2 - The Science of Food

2.3 - Life with Diabetes

3.1 - The Disease

3.2 - It's in the Genes

3.3 - Chromosomes

3.4 - Inheritance

4.1 - Heart Structure

4.2 - The Heart at Work

4.3 - Heart Dysfunction

4.4 - Heart Intervention

5.1 - Infection

6.1 - Analyzing Anna


Essential Learning Goals

  • Explanation of Phenomena (30%) - Students will use models and representations to communicate explanations of scientific phenomena involving biomedical science, as evidenced by correct explanations of observed data and phenomena.

  • Process of Inquiry (40%) - Students will ask questions, define problems, design and carry out investigations, and communicate the results of those investigations as evidenced by presentation of lab processes and results in written and/or verbal form.

  • Problem Solving / Data Analysis  (30%) - Students will use a combination of mathematics, computational thinking and critical thinking to analyze data and solve problems as evidenced by articulating the process of solving a variety of problems (related to the medical issues surrounding a fictional character) and by arriving at a correct answer.

Major Assessments and Success Criteria

Students will be primarily be assessed three ways:

  1. Designing and carrying out Laboratory investigations and reporting their findings through Lab Reports

  2. Completing activities designed by PLTW to assess the essential learning goals

  3. Summative assessments at major checkpoints 


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