Puget Sound Adventist Academy

Preparing students to be life-long learners, critical thinkers, and tomorrow’s leaders.
Academics » Course Descriptions

Course Descriptions


Bible I (
2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - The involvement of God in the life of the individual is the emphasis of this class. First semester begins with a look at the Bible as the source of our beliefs and practices and continues to examine evidence from the Old Testament that God can be trusted. The second semester looks at the life of Christ as the clearest evidence of God’s desire to be a part of our lives.


Bible II (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - This course focuses upon the impact Christ has upon His family as a whole rather than just upon the individual. Evidence from the Old Testament will be covered first semester while challenges facing the Christian church from the time of Christ to the present will be the focus second semester. From this study we will look for evidence of God’s desire for His church family today.


Bible III (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - Junior Bible or Bible Doctrines focuses on the beliefs held by the Seventh-day Adventist church and will examine how each of these doctrines relate to the person of Jesus Christ and His will for us. Special attention will be given to events just prior to the Second Coming and the opportunity of sharing the Good News of His coming with others.


Bible IV (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - An introduction to moral philosophy that emphasizes the importance of a personal code of ethics to the good of society as well as a survey of historical ethical thought. The identification of a Christian value system is studied. Units on friendships, dating, marriage and family focus on assisting students in establishing a Christian philosophy of bonding.


ESL – Introduction to the Bible (2 Semester, 1 Credits) - A course designed to introduce students to Christianity to non-native English speakers. The class will cover the basic tenants of the Christian faith and the unique beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. This will be done through inductive Bible study as well as discussions, which will allow students the opportunity to explore different worldviews and how they compare to Christianity. The class will also analyze Christian philosophy and culture in the modern era as it relates to Christianity.




Algebra I
(2 Semesters, 1 Credits) —All entering students will take a math placement test to determine their class level. Algebra I is a study of the processes involved in the solution of problems of algebraic methods. Study is given to positive and negative numbers, equations, factors, graphs, and quadratics. This course supplies the foundation necessary for further study in mathematics and science.


Geometry (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - A study of the principles of Euclidian geometry. The techniques of deductive reasoning will be used in the designing of acceptable proofs and constructions. Units on analytic geometry and trigonometry are included.

Recommended: Algebra I


Algebra II (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) – This course prepares the student for pre-calculus. It covers a review of topics from Algebra I and further study of quadratic equations and functions, linear and quadratic systems, graphs and introduction to functions, exponents and logarithms, elementary analytic geometry, statistics, and trigonometry.

Prerequisite: Algebra I


Function, Statistics, and Trigonometry (FST) (2 semesters, 1 Credits) – This course meets the Washington state requirement for algebra II, but it does not prepare the student for pre-calculus. It is a less intense version of algebra II covering a review of topics from Algebra I and further study of quadratic equations and functions, linear and quadratic systems, graphs and introduction to functions, statistics, and trigonometry.


Pre-Calculus (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - This course is designed to prepare students for Calculus. Topics covered are trigonometry, vectors, matrices and determinants, polar graphs, sequences, series, limits, exponential and logarithmic functions, probability, statistics, derivatives and integrals.

Prerequisite: “C” in Algebra II or permission from instructor.




Physical Science
(1 semester, .5 Credits) - This course emphasize the development of basic scientific skills and concepts in chemistry, physics, earth science and biology. In addition, scientific vocabulary and reading comprehension will be addressed to assist students in furthering their science education.


Biology (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - This course is a general look at Biology with emphasis on the study of plant and animal cells, genetics, invertebrates, and vertebrates. It emphasizes understanding of biological principles and procedures. (Required for graduation)


Chemistry (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - A study of atomic structure and how it relates to the physical properties and characteristics of the elements. Chemical composition and reactions are studied as well as the chemistry of solids, liquids, gases, acids, and bases. Plasmas, fusion and nuclear chemistry are introduced. Lab work is required. Prerequisite: Algebra I


Anatomy & Physiology (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) – This is a two-semester course that covers the basic structure and function of the human body using a systems approach. Major topics covered include the endocrine, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems along with immunity, metabolism, and fluid, electrolyte, and acid- base homeostasis. Laboratory work includes dissection, micros- copy, models, and experimental demonstration of concepts covered in class. Dissection of preserved animal specimens is required. This course is designed primarily for students majoring in nursing or allied health fields. There is an additional lab fee of $30 per semester for this class.

Prerequisite: “C” in Biology or permission from instructor.


Physics (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - A study of the fundamental laws of physics as related to the following fields: mechanics, heat, sound, light, electricity, magnetism and atomic-nuclear physics. This course is intended to meet the needs of a student who may be required to take an introductory course in college physics. Field experiences are part of this class. Lab work is required. There is an additional $30 lab fee for this class.

Prerequisite: “C” in Algebra II or permission from instructor.


NOTE: Students are expected to work in the science lab using mature and safe behavior~ they will follow directions, express themselves in writing, do mathematical calculations and keep a course notebook




English I
(2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - This course offers an introduction to literary forms in reading — short story, drama, nonfiction, poetry and the novel. The primary purpose of reading in this class is to develop appreciation for good literature and increase vocabulary and reading comprehension. The class includes extensive writing practice with special emphasis on the essay.


English II (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - Sophomore English integrates a chronological overview of American literature with continued emphasis on research and writing skills, especially essays and poetry. Some oral presentations required.


English III (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - This course offers a survey of British literature and continued honing of writing and presentation skills. Special emphasis is placed on developing test-taking skills in the areas of reading, writing and vocabulary. Students also develop a writing portfolio for use in college applications. Interested students may take the AP exam in language in addition to this class.


Speech (1 Semester, .5 Credits) - Students will analyze the purpose and audience of an oral presentation. They will study how to gather information in a logical organization of ideas for public presentation. Students will perform oral presentations in front of the class demonstrating the various techniques studied.


English IV (1 Semester, .5 Credits) The first quarter of the class is devoted to research writing and presentation. The second quarter focuses on cultural literacy. We will survey the writing of several major civilizations and read modern writers from many cultures. Practice on in-class essays will be emphasized. Class meets one semester. Interested students may take the AP exam in literature in addition to this class.


College Writing (1 Semester, .5 Credits) - Senior students will work on improving and expanding their writing skills through various writing projects throughout the semester. This course is designed to prepare students for writing at the college level, and emphasizes academic essay writing and the research writing process and paper production. Students give oral presentations of their written work in this course as well. Interested students may take the AP Language & Composition Exam at the end of the year to earn college credit.




World History (2 Semesters, 1 Credit) –
This course provides a general overview to world history, examining ancient civilizations, dynasties, and empires and ending after the French Revolution. During our study of world cultures, we will learn about religious, social, civic, legal, and economics contributions of various nations around the world. Integrated into the class will be a survey of literature, art, music, philosophy, as well as scientific discoveries that influenced the course of history.


U.S. History (2 Semesters, 1 Credit) - This course begins with the early exploration and settlement of the New World and closes at the end of the nineteenth century. Major events examined include Colonial Society, Revolutionary Era, Development of the Constitution, the Civil War and Reconstruction, Social Movements, Industrialism, the Native Americans and the Western Frontier, and the development and influence of American art, philosophy, religion, and literature.


Government (1 Semester, .5 Credits) –

This course focuses on the development, organization, and role of government in the United States. Students learn the ways in which government in this country is organized, the ways in which it is controlled by the people, the many things that it does, and the various ways in which it does them.


Geography (2 semesters, 1 Credit) - Students learn about the geography of the various continents and countries of the world, including the 5 themes of geography: why a place is located where it is, what it is like, what the significance of its location is, and the issues that affect it. Students also learn how to read and draw maps and to recall place names and locations. Geography includes climate patterns, how to study people and cultures and how to use various geographic tools.


Contemporary World History (1 semester, .5 credit) - This course will challenge students to understand the dynamics of global interactions among nations and regions present issues that affect all humanity. These dynamics include competing beliefs and goals, methods of engagement, and conflict and cooperation. Contemporary issues have political, economic, social, historic, and geographic components. Students will evaluate approaches to addressing global and regional issues reflect historical influences and multiple perspectives.


Civics (1 Semester, .5 Credits) - This course will provide a comprehensive background for the understanding of United States citizenship and the foundations and operation of the federal, state and local government organizations and procedures, with special emphasis on the rights and responsibilities of Washington citizens. Students will apply this understanding to current event topics relevant to our nation and election issues. They will be able to analyze and interpret data relevant to government and politics, and be able to critically analyze relevant theories and concepts, apply them appropriately, and develop connections throughout this course. This course will emphasize civic participation by the students.


History through Film & Literature (1 semester, .5 credits) – History as viewed through the cultural mediums of literature and selected films. The student will evaluate the impact of these mediums upon the average person in society. Mini units with selected themes will be offered and evaluated. A minimum grade of C must be maintained for credit for the Enriched program.




Spanish I
(2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - The principal emphasis of the first year of Spanish is understanding the language and learning to speak it through the study of grammar and vocabulary. The class also attempts to build a better understanding of the customs, language and peoples of the Hispanic world.


Spanish II (2 Semesters, 1 Credits) - The second year of the language seeks to expand the student’s knowledge of grammar and vocabulary so that they may communicate and understand the language on a more advanced level. Writing and reading the language is also emphasized as well as an appreciation of and exposure to the Hispanic culture. Prerequisite: A grade of C or higher in Spanish I or permission from the teacher.


English as a Second Language (ESL) (.5 Credits per Semester) - ESL is an introductory class for students whose first language is not English. Students who are not yet proficient in English, as determined by placement tests, will be required to enroll in ESL until satisfactory skills are acquired and a minimum TOEFL score of 61 (IBT). Students who are enrolled in ESL class may receive a pass/fail grade in some subjects until the teacher deems the student has a sufficient mastery of the English language to comprehend and communicate subject concepts. An extra fee is charged for ESL class. This class includes cultural awareness and students will have mandatory activities outside of school hours.




Physical Education I/II
(3 Semesters total, 1.5 credits) - Team and individual sports are covered. Fitness testing is done twice a year. Participation, cooperation and sportsmanship are emphasized. Advanced strategy and skill is stressed.


Health – (1 semester, .5 credit) – This course focuses on the importance of healthful living and making responsible choices conducive to life-long wellness. Students will explore the biblical principles of healthy living as well as the connection between physical activity, life-style choices, and wellness.


Varsity Sports (.25 Credits each sport) - This course involves the strenuous conditioning, advanced skill and strategy development, practice time and game involvement required for membership on academy varsity teams. Extra fee and permission from instructor required.




Computer Applications
(2 Semesters, .5 Credits) - Introduces students to other business applications of computer technology using Windows XP Professional and Microsoft Office 2010. These include utilizing spreadsheets using Excel, databases through Access, combining applications, creating presentations in Power Point, and using the Internet. History of computers and computer ethics are also covered.




(.25 credits/semester) – Art is offered to all students who are interested in drawing and painting. The first semester is devoted to drawing techniques. The second semester is devoted to acrylic painting. Throughout the year artists and art styles will be researched, including some written assignments. Grading is based on individual proficiency.


Band (.25 Credits/Semester) - Band is offered to those who have some proficiency with a musical instrument. Varied styles of secular and religious music may be performed at schools, churches, and special events. An audition is required. Participation is required at all performances. Students may not drop during the semester. Students must maintain a grade of “C” or higher to remain in band.


Choir (.25 Credits/Semester) - A general singing group open to interested students. All aspects of proper vocal technique are emphasized, particularly those dealing with group singing. The choir may perform at local churches, service clubs, and other special events. Participation is required at all performances. Students may not drop during the semester. Students must maintain a grade of “C” or higher to remain in choir.





Community Service (1 Credit per year = 25 hours) —All students are required to complete personal community service. Please see the Chaplain’s office for hourly details. The biennially scheduled international mission trip counts for up to 12 hours.


Work Experience (.5 Credits/Semester) Limited work experience is available. Students enrolled in the scholarship program are given the first opportunity to interview for a position.


Study Skills (.25 credit/quarter) Students will learn how to improve their study habits through the use of organizational skills, discovering their personal learning style, and other techniques useful for having a successful high school experience. This is a major part of the orientation day for freshmen. These required techniques are incorporated into all freshmen courses at the beginning of the year.


Correspondence Classes/Distance Learning - Puget Sound Adventist Academy has partnered with Greenways Academy of Washington to offer elective classes to students through their correspondence program. Please visit our web site for a link, or go directly to www.greenwaysacademy.com/washington for class details. Other online distance learning programs may be acceptable with school approval.