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Program of Studies

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At Waltham High School, we are proud of our academic programs.  We provide courses to meet every student’s needs: challenging standards-based courses for all students, advanced placement courses for higher achieving students, and technical certification courses for multiple vocational and technology pathways.  Our fine and performing arts, vocational, and athletic programs are an integral part of Waltham High School that augment our academic program of studies. We are educating the citizens of tomorrow.

 

    Graduation Requirements

  • 4 years of English
  • 4 years of Math
  • 3 years of History - World History, United States History I & II
  • 4 years of Physical Education and Wellness
  • 3 years of Lab Sciences
  • 10 credits in Arts Electives*
  • 2 years of a single World Language
  • Every student must have a schedule that has 30 class periods per week and accrue minimum of 120 credits by graduation.
  • * See Arts Electives for more information.

    MASSCORE

The Massachusetts High School Program of Studies (MassCore) is intended to help students be college and career ready by taking a rigorous course of study. Students will arrive at college or the workplace well-prepared and the number of students taking remedial courses in college will be reduced. MassCore recommends a comprehensive set of subject area courses and units to be completed before graduating high school.

The recommended program of studies includes: four years of English, four years of math (to include Algebra II), three years of lab-based science, three years of history, two years of the same foreign language, one year of an arts program, and five additional “core” courses such as business, health, and/or technology. MassCore recommendations are aligned with Massachusetts University admission requirements beginning with the Class of 2017.

    Special Education

The Waltham Public Schools Special Education Department offers a wide variety of programs for special needs students. The goal of the Special Education Department is to enable students to access the general education curriculum. For all students deemed eligible, and on an Individual Education Program (I.E.P.), instruction is individualized taking into consideration each child’s unique learning style. Programming is developed which allows the student to work to their potential in the least restrictive environment. Selection of the appropriate programs is done through the TEAM process and is based on individual needs as developed in the educational plan. Students who receive special education services work closely with their liaisons to ensure that their individual education program complies with standards based instruction and the curriculum frameworks.
 

Course Offerings

 

PLTW STEM Elective Pathways

    Bio Med Pathway

Director: Deena Depamphilis

Please see the PLTW Overview and PLTW Website for detailed information on each course offering.

    PRINCIPLES OF BIOMEDICAL SCIENCE (PBS)

In this rigorous course, students explore concepts of biology and medicine as they take on roles of different medical professionals to solve real-world problems. Students are challenged in various scenarios including investigating a crime scene to solve a mystery, diagnosing and proposing treatment to patients in a family medical practice, to tracking down and containing a medical outbreak at a local hospital, stabilizing a patient during an emergency, and collaborating with others to design solutions to local and global medical problems. Students develop technical and in-demand, transportable skills that they need to thrive in life and career. By completion of this course students should understand the diverse set of careers and related skills in the biomedical science field. This is the first of 4 courses in the biomedical pathway, no prerequisites are required, freshmen are encouraged to enroll. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    HUMAN BODY SYSTEMS (HBS)

In this rigorous course students examine the interactions of human body systems as they explore identity, power, movement, protection, and homeostasis. Exploring science in action, students build organs and tissues on a skeletal Maniken®; use data acquisition software to monitor body functions such as muscle movement, reflex and voluntary action, and respiration; and take on the roles of biomedical professionals to solve real-world medical cases. Prerequisites: Successful completion of Principles of Biomedical Sciences or Biology. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    MEDICAL INTERVENTIONS (MI)

In this rigorous course, students follow the life of a fictitious family as they investigate how to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease. Students explore how to detect and fight infection; screen and evaluate the code in human DNA; evaluate cancer treatment options; and prevail when the organs of the body begin to fail. Through real-world cases, students are exposed to a range of interventions related to immunology, surgery, genetics, pharmacology, medical devices, and diagnostics. Prerequisites: Students must have completed Principles of Biomedical Science OR Biology AND students must have successfully completed Human Body Systems OR Anatomy & Physiology. Preference will be given to students that have completed PLTW PBS or HBS. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    BIOMEDICAL INNOVATIONS (BI)

In this capstone course of the PLTW Biomedical Science sequence, students build on the knowledge and skills gained from previous courses to design innovative solutions for the most pressing health challenges of the 21st century. Students address topics ranging from public health and biomedical engineering to clinical medicine and physiology. They have the opportunity to work on an independent project with a mentor. Prerequisites: Students must have successfully completed Medical Interventions, or Honors Biology and Honors Anatomy & Physiology. Any exceptions require a meeting with, and signature from, the course instructor or Director of Science. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    Engineering Pathway

Director: Deena Depamphilis

Please see the PLTW Overview and PLTW Website for detailed information on this Pathway.

    INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING DESIGN (IED)

In this introductory engineering design class, students will dig deep into the engineering design process and apply math, science and engineering standards to hands-on-projects. They will work both individually and in teams to design solutions to a variety of problems using 3D modeling software, and use an engineering notebook to document their work. No prerequisites are required, freshmen are encouraged to enroll. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore

    PRINCIPLES OF ENGINEERING DESIGN (POE)

Through problems that engage and challenge, students explore a broad range of engineering topics, including mechanisms, the strength of structures and materials, and automation. Students develop skills in problem solving, research, and design while learning strategies for design process documentation, collaboration, and presentation. Students explore a broad range of engineering topics including mechanisms, strength of structure and materials, and automation, and then they apply what they know to take on challenges like designing a self-powered car. Prerequisites: Successful completion of IED, or B or better in Freshmen Conceptual Physics and Integrated Math I or Algebra 1. Preference will be given to students that successfully completed IED. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    CIVIL ENGINEERING AND ARCHITECTURE (CEA)

Students learn important aspects of building and site design and development. They apply math, science, and standard engineering practices to design both residential and commercial projects and document their work using 3-D architectural design software. Prerequisites: Successful completion of IED or POE. Any exceptions require a meeting with, and signature from, the course instructor or Director of Science. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)

    ENGINEERING DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT (EDD)

The knowledge and skills students acquire throughout PLTW Engineering come together in this capstone course. Students will identify an issue and then research, design, and test a solution, ultimately presenting their solution to a panel. Students apply the professional skills they have developed to document a design process to standards and upon completion of EDD they will be ready to take on any post-secondary program or career. Prerequisites: Successful completion of POE and one additional PLTW engineering course. Any exceptions require a meeting with, and signature from, the course instructor or Director of Science. This course is a lab science and fulfills a unit of lab-based science for MassCore. (5 Credits)
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