Each course in the Biomedical Science sequence builds on the skills and knowledge students gain in the preceding courses. Schools offer the three PLTW Biomedical Science foundation courses within a period of three academic years from the start of implementation and may also offer the capstone course.
Principles of the Biomedical Sciences
In the introductory course of the PLTW Biomedical Science program, students explore concepts of biology and medicine to determine factors that led to the death of a fictional person. While investigating the case, students examine autopsy reports, investigate medical history, and explore medical treatments that might have prolonged the person’s life. The activities and projects introduce students to human physiology, basic biology, medicine, and research processes while allowing them to design their own experiments to solve problems.
Human Body Systems
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.
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.
In the final 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 design project with a mentor or advisor from a university, medical facility, or research institution.
Biomedical Science - Assessment
Assessments play an important role in providing meaningful feedback to students, teachers, administrators, and PLTW. Through assessments, students identify what they are doing well and what they need help with, and teachers are able to provide individualized direction and guidance to each student.
Student Centered Balanced Assessment
PLTW supports a balanced approach to assessment for all programs, integrating both formative and summative assessments. Through a balanced assessment approach, assessment is an ongoing activity. Students demonstrate their knowledge throughout the course by completing activities, projects and problems using a variety of assessment tools, such as performance rubrics and reflective questioning to deepen and expand their knowledge and skills.
Decision Making using Valid and Reliable Scores
PLTW's assessment experts apply industry best practices and methods to design, test, and implement End of Course (EoC) assessments for our network of schools. We report valid and reliable scores on overall student performance within the course. The End of Course assessment gives students an objective evaluation of their achievement, and stakeholders data to make informed decisions.
Biomedical Science End of Course assessments are available for Principles of Biomedical Sciences, Human Body Systems, and Medical Interventions
Many colleges, universities, and other organizations use students’ EoC scores for student recognition opportunities.