top of page
  • Greg Landry

Standard Order & Timing of High School Science Classes

Updated: Feb 16, 2023

© 2023 by Greg Landry. For permission to reprint in blogs, newsletters, web sites, etc. please contact Greg Landry.


I receive lots of questions about the order and timing of taking high school level science classes. Obviously, there can be many variations based upon individual circumstances, but here's the standard order and timing..


For students (87% of students fit into this category) who will likely NOT be college science majors or will likely NOT attend college:


--- 6th - 9th grade - Combo Science (Life, Marine, Earth, Space, & Physical Science)

Students should have at least one year of a broad prep class that develops excitement and preparation for high school science. I teach this class with a scope and selection that students enjoy and that prepares them for high school science.

--- 9th grade - Life Prep (standard level) Biology

Most students are also capable of taking Life Prep (standard level) Biology in 8th grade but most take it in 9th.


--- 10th grade - Life Prep (standard level) Chemistry (and / or possibly Anatomy & Physiology)


--- 11th grade - Life Prep (standard level) Physics (and / or possibly Anatomy & Physiology)

Traditionally, most students who will likely not be college science majors or will likely not attend college, don't take Physics. However, I created Life Prep (standard level) Physics specifically for these students. It's much more focused on the concepts (not math) of Physics which are really interesting to most students. Physics gives students a keen understanding of how the world around them works.


--- 12th grade - Human Anatomy & Physiology


Other electives: Embryology / Endocrinology, Microbiology / Biochemistry, Exercise and Sports Physiology, Marine Science, Earth & Space Science.


For students (13% of students fit into this category) who WILL likely be college science majors:


--- 6th - 9th grade - Combo Science (Life, Marine, Earth, Space, & Physical Science)

Students should have at least one year of a broad prep class that develops excitement and preparation for high school science. I teach this class with a scope and selection that students enjoy and that prepares them for high school science.

--- 9th grade - College Prep Biology

About 15% of students are capable of taking this in 8th grade which creates time for more science classes in the high school year. However, I would be cautious about taking College Prep Biology in 8th grade unless you're sure your student is ready for it.


--- 10th grade - College Prep Chemistry (and possibly Anatomy & Physiology)

As with College Prep Biology, about 15% of students are capable of taking this in 9th grade.


--- 11th grade - Physics (and possibly Anatomy & Physiology or Advanced Biology)


--- 12th grade - Anatomy & Physiology and / or Advanced Biology and / or advanced Chemistry)


Other electives: Embryology / Endocrinology, Microbiology / Biochemistry, Exercise and Sports Physiology, Marine Science, Earth & Space Science.


I hope this helps. Please don't hesitate to email me if you have questions.

bottom of page