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Up to and including grade 10, science courses may be described as being “ general” in the sense that they contain units from each of the three main branches of science: biology, chemistry, earth science and physics. Grade 11 and 12 science courses can be described as being “specialized” as there are multiple courses, each one focusing almost exclusively on one branch of science.

Some things to consider:

• You must take at least one Grade 11 science course
• You may take two or more Grade 11 science courses
• Depending on your future interests, you may need to take two or more Grade 11 science courses

Your choices (along with those at the Grade 12 level) can affect you in many important ways including:

• enabling or preventing access to certain university (and other post-secondary) programs
• making you eligible for certain jobs (that don’t require post-secondary schooling)

Current Topics in Science (Grade 11)

This course is significantly different than those listed above, as this course explores a number of relevant topics such as forensics, and introduces the various sciences as needed.  At present, this course is not recognized by the universities for enabling access to any program, and so should best be thought of as an elective course, although it does fulfill the requirement for a grade 11 science for graduation purposes.

Which science course(s) should I take?

Very few grade 10 students know exactly what their future interests are, and those that feel that they do know, should be aware that interests and decisions are frequently changed as the years go on.  Therefore it is highly recommended that you decide your courses with the idea of taking courses that you may need - it is better to have taken a course that you do not end up requiring, than to find yourself in the situation of requiring a course that you did not take. 

In choosing, carefully consider the following:

•Which sciences interest you?  Finding a particular subject interesting is reason enough to take that course.

•Which sciences are required for your future interests, and even possible future interests?  If you are not sure, then do a little research. Often this question can be answered by checking the Internet, or asking a teacher or guidance councillor.

Which science course is the easiest/hardest?

While this is a question that many students ask, there is no actual answer. All of the courses are similarly difficult, yet it is often the case that students find one to be more difficult than another, due to personal strengths.  Of the three, physics and chemistry tend to be more mathematical, and so your ability in math will likely have an impact on how you perceive these courses. Similarly, of the three, biology tends to have the greatest amount of new vocabulary as well as many complex and interconnecting concepts. Strong communication skills are a definite asset.

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