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The Science Department faculty assists students in developing the knowledge and skills for investigation, interpretation, and comprehension of the natural world. Full-year courses in the major disciplines of physics, chemistry, and biology, as well as elective courses in environmental science, marine science, and astronomy, offer students the opportunity to specialize or to select a variety of courses. Using current technology, laboratory materials, and scientific resources, students build their skills and explore their interests. Daily homework, weekly quizzes, periodic tests, and comprehensive exams provide assessment.

Each student is expected to document a familiarity with laboratory equipment as well as a mastery of the way in which data are properly reported. Additionally, cooperative learning stands at the forefront of the laboratory curriculum; during their labs, students work collaboratively to gather, report, and evaluate data. Graduates of Dexter Southfield will be well prepared to discuss the application of science to current events.‚Äč


To satisfy the requirement of three years of study, students must take three laboratory courses, at least one in the physical sciences and one in the life sciences. However, most students take a fourth year of science to satisfy the entrance requirements of selective colleges and universities. Students may choose from several options of study.

For the Classes of 2015 and earlier, Conceptual Physics is normally taken in Class 9; Chemistry is normally taken in Class 10; and Biology is normally taken in Class 11. Students may choose to take other science courses concurrently with the normal sequence as long as prerequisites are met.

Starting with the Class of 2016, Biology will be taken in Class 9; Chemistry will normally be taken in Class 10; and Physics will normally be taken in Class 11. Students may choose to take other science courses concurrently with the normal sequence as long as prerequisites are met.

Honors and Advanced Placement sections are offered to qualified students in Classes 9 through 12. Placement in an Honors or Advanced Placement section requires the recommendation of the Science Department and permission of the Head of the Science Department. Only those students who have demonstrated commitment to excellence in science and the ability to work independently will be allowed to participate in the Honors or AP program. In order to qualify for consideration for an AP course, a student must have earned a year-end grade of A- or higher for the prerequisite (B in a previous Honors course).

MEDScience Class

Dexter Southfield offered an innovative medical science course to upper school students. Students in Ms. Emilia Guy's MEDScience class had the incredible opportunity to journey to Harvard Medical School (HMS) to test their knowledge of different body systems in a simulation lab. At HMS, they worked in real time on a responsive mannequin to diagnose and administer medication.


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