AP Biology

AP Biology Course Details


Rhiannon Cockayne


* PLEASE NOTE: Registration is open from August 1 - Nov 30 each year. AP courses must be completed by June 1st, but it is highly recommended that you complete the course by May 1st in order to be fully prepared for the College Board exam.

Students must have completed their grade 10 year. Students must have completed Biology 11 or 12 with a mark of at least 80% , or be registered in Biology 12. It is also highly recommended that students have completed Chemistry 11 or 12 with a mark of 80% or higher. Final authorization for enrollment in an AP course rests with the AP subject teacher. If you are an adult student, please contact one of counsellors to discuss your prerequisites. You can reach a counsellor through the front desk at 250 704 4979.


AP courses offer high school students the opportunity to receive university credits for their work during high school, as well as a standard measure of achievement in a particular course. All courses prepare students to successfully pass the approved College Board exam. In addition, since the student will have already completed first year level University courses, the student's chances of acceptance at Colleges and Universities are increased.

AP @ SIDES provides students with interactive courseware that goes beyond conventional online high school courses to offer an unparalleled critical challenge. All courseware for AP @ SIDES is developed by Apex Learning (www.apexlearning.com).

AP Biology builds students' understanding of biology on both the micro and macro scales. After studying cell biology, students move on to understand how evolution drives the diversity and unity of life. Students will examine how living systems store, retrieve, transmit, and respond to information and the processes used by organisms to utilize free energy. The equivalent of an introductory college-level biology course, AP Biology prepares students for the AP exam and for further study in science, health sciences, or engineering.

The AP Biology course provides a learning experience focused on allowing students to develop their critical thinking skills and cognitive strategies. Frequent no- and low-stakes assessments allow students to measure their comprehension and improve performance as they progress through each activity. Students regularly engage with primary source materials, allowing them to practice the critical reading and analysis skills that they will need in order to pass the AP exam and succeed in a college biology course.

Students will perform hands-on or virtual labs that give them insight into the nature of science and help them understand biological concepts, as well as how evidence can be obtained to support those concepts. Students will complete several virtual lab studies where they form hypotheses; collect, analyze, and manipulate data; and report their findings and conclusions. During both virtual and traditional lab investigations and research opportunities, students summarize their findings and analyze others' findings in summaries, using statistical and mathematical calculations when appropriate.

Summative tests are offered at the end of each unit as well as at the end of each semester, and contain objective and constructed response items. Robust scaffolding, rigorous instruction, relevant material and regular active learning opportunities ensure that students can achieve mastery of the skills necessary to excel on the AP exam.

AP Biology is a two-semester course and includes roughly 200 hours of instruction and work time.








Teacher-directed Student-paced


40% Assignments and tests
60% Course Exams
College Board Exam does not count toward course grade.

Non-refundable College Board Exam fee of $125.00 due January 31



BC Performance Standards


SIDES Teacher - Rhiannon Cockayne


AP Biology requires a college-level biology textbook. Students may use any college-level biology textbook to successfully complete the course, but specific references are provided in the course to support students using either of the following texts:


Basic Technical Requirements