Course title

Principles of Biomedical Sciences



Course description

Catalog Description:

Students investiage human body systems and helath conditions including heart disease; diabetes; sick cell disease; hypercholesterolemia; and infectious diseases. They determine factors that led to the death of a fictional person and investigate lifestyle choices and medical treatments that might have prolonged their life. Activies and projects introduce students to human physiology; medicine; research and bioinformatics.† This is the first year of the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) biomedical science sequence.† This course is a lab science. This class is cross-credited for CTE and Science.† Students are encouraged to participate in HOSA. NCAA approved.

Transcript Codes: B; S

Unit Outline:

Unit 1: Medical Investigation In Unit 1 students engage in forensic science and medical examination investigations in order to: a.) explore biological and forensic science careers; b.) gain experience in experimental design and data analysis; c.) learn about biomolecules and their role in determining identity; d.) learn about human anatomy and physiology and causes of death; e.) practice synthesizing multiple forms of data to draw conclusions; and f.) work to develop professional communication skills.

Lesson 1.1 Investigating the Scene In lesson 1.1; students begin their training as medical investigators. Shadowing members of the forensic investigation team; they will document and analyze the clues left at the scene of a woman?s death. A video from the police commissioner emphasizes the severity of the situation; the need for more qualified professionals to help solve these types of cases; and the need for them to get to the bottom of the case ASAP. Students will sketch the crime scene and document evidence; analyze trace evidence in the lab; analyze biometric data of interviewed suspects; as well as record a video check-in for the police commissioner ? chronicling what they have learned about the case in this lesson. Students will also be introduced to experimental design as well as proper scientific documentation.

Lesson 1.2 Master the Morgue In lesson 1.2; students shadow the medical examiner to investigate what clues the body provides about the cause and manner of death. Students explore human body system structure and function as they investigate the composition of an autopsy. They will explore the many pieces of evidence that go into determining time of death and complete toxicology testing to determine the presence of drugs or chemicals in the body of the decedent. Examining basic tissue types in the body; students will zoom in to the microscopic level for clues that can?t be seen with the naked eye. Students will then explore gross anatomy as they complete an ?autopsy? dissection of a preserved heart. Using what they have learned in this lesson and from the examination of evidence from the scene; students will determine the cause; mechanism; and manner of death of the decedent.

Lesson 1.3 Open Investigation Now that students have ?graduated? from their training; they will be tasked to solve a new case. They will explore a virtual crime scene; gather evidence from the scene and persons of interest; complete laboratory testing; analyze evidence to deduce what happened; and complete an autopsy report using test and examination results. In preparation for court testimony; they must create an evidence board that illustrates the case to a judge or jury. Medical Investigation Lesson 1.1 Investigating the Scene Lesson 1.2 Master the Morgue Lesson 1.3 Open Investigation 05.2021 Unit 2: Clinical Care Students assume the role of different medical professionals working through the schedule of patients in a family care clinic in order to: a.) explore medical careers; b.) practice professional communication; c.) gain experience collecting; recording; and interpreting physiological data; d.) learn how to perform routine medical tests and evaluate results; e.) learn about cutting edge technologies revolutionizing healthcare; f.) understand the interconnectedness between body systems; and g.) explore the various causations and inheritance of disease.

Lesson 2.1 Talk to Your Doc Students begin their day at the PLTW Total Care Clinic. Each patient they see will highlight key clinical skills as well as allow students to explore biological and physiological content. Students will explore effective questioning techniques; learn about documentation of patient data and medical history in electronic medical records; and investigate issues related to patient privacy. They will collect and analyze vital signs from a patient; investigating how each vital sign relates to the overall health and homeostasis of the body as well as how these vital signs can be used as part of clinical care and disease diagnosis. Students will interpret the results of routine bloodwork and make recommendations on ways to improve overall health and limit disease risk. Students are also introduced to telehealth; wearable devices; and remote monitoring as they simulate a virtual visit with a diabetic patient. At the end of the lesson; students will apply what they have learned to design a plan for a routine visit of a patient with a chronic health condition.

Lesson 2.2 Decoding a Diagnosis In this lesson students explore the relationship between DNA; chromosomes; genes and proteins as they work through the diagnosis of various patients in the practice. Students investigate the process of protein synthesis as they piece together how mutations are related to various health conditions. Students will also explore how abnormalities with chromosomes can contribute to disease and overall health. At the end of the lesson; students will use what they have learned to help a family interested in learning more about their genetic risk.

Lesson 2.3 New to the Practice In the problem students are tasked with helping a new patient at the PLTW Total Care Clinic. They will need to evaluate all medical evidence; question the family; record vital signs; order and evaluate bloodwork and synthesize data to make a diagnosis. Clinical Care Lesson 2.1 Talk to Your Doc Lesson 2.2 Decoding a Diagnosis

Lesson 2.3 New to the Practice 05.2021 Unit 3: Outbreaks & Emergencies Working as public health officials and then as emergency responders; students are presented with a series of events they must address while exploring: a.) careers in public health; epidemiology; microbiology and emergency medicine; b.) professional communication and presentation; c.) data analysis; d.) processes by which critical medical decisions are made and acted upon; e.) processes by which patients are diagnosed with a contagious disease and by which a causative agent is identified.

Lesson 3.1 Nonsocomial Nightmare In this lesson students are part of the PLTW Disease Defense Team and they have been called to the local hospital. There have been a number of hospital acquired infections and the patients are not related or in the same ward. Students are challenged to investigate the case; determine why and how patients are getting sick and design a strategy for resolving the outbreak (and preventing another one). Through their investigation; students will investigate the chain of infection; agents of disease; as well as basic structure and function of the human immune system. In the lab; students will work to identify the infectious agent that plagues the fictional hospital.

Lesson 3.2 Emergency Response Students will now serve as part of an emergency medical response team; trained to respond when access to care is limited during accidents; natural disasters; and other mass casualty events. As they respond to an emergency in the field; students will investigate assessment and stabilization of a patient; drug delivery and metabolism; techniques to stop bleeding; and communication between medical care providers. Students will evaluate hospital protocol for medical surge during an event as well as design a mobile response facility to assist with patient triage and care.

Lesson 3.3 Information Sharing Students will apply what they have learned in the unit as they plan the design of an app to be used to trace outbreaks; respond to emergencies (local or global); increase response efficiency in emergencies; or provide another public health function. This app can be used by medical professionals or can be designed to be used by civilians in an emergency. Students will create mock-ups of their app; modeling the interactivity and peer review each other?s designs. Outbreaks & Emergencies Lesson 3.1 Nonsocomial Nightmare Lesson 3.2 Emergency Response Lesson 3.3 Information Sharing 05.2021

Unit 4: Innovation; Inc. Welcome to PLTW Innovation; Inc. ? an incubator for innovation where some of the best minds in science and engineering endeavor to solve some of the world?s most pressing biomedical challenges. Students tour Innovation; Inc. labs and engage in experiences designed to: a.) build their engineering and experimental design process skills; b.) challenge them to design solutions to current and emerging issues both on and off this world; c.) tangibly highlight that solutions to biomedical science problems rely on collaboration between professions; d.) build their computer science skills by using computer aided design (CAD) and geographic information system (GIS) to innovate the future of medicine; and e.) explore career fields on the forefront of medicine.

Lesson 4.1 Designing the Future In lesson 4.1 students will tour labs in the company; each dedicated to a different area of research; innovation; and design. They will investigate innovation in medical device development as they design model vessels for testing of cardiac stents. They will explore how computer-aided design (CAD) can be used for modeling and prototyping in innovation. Students will explore innovation in drug delivery as they design and test the formulation for a new drug. Focusing on large scale efforts in disease prevention and health promotions; they will then design a comprehensive initiative that could be implemented in communities around the country.

Lesson 4.2 New Frontier In this lesson students expand their exploration of innovation to new frontiers. They will explore how the body reacts to travel to and life in space and design innovative improvements. They will then dive under the sea as they locate and test marine organisms for bioactive compounds useful as therapeutics. In the project students will be tasked with identifying the next frontier for scientific exploration using GIS and designing an innovation for use in exploring; existing in; or adapting materials from; this new frontier. Students will summarize their research and present their proposal in an interactive story map.

Lesson 4.3 Invitation to Innovation In the problem; students are tasked with competing for open lab space at PLTW Innovation; Inc. To make their case; students apply all they have learned in this unit (and course) to design a medical innovation.

School country

United States

School state


School / district Address

821 S. Sullivan Road Spokane Valley, WA

School zip code


Requested competency code

Lab Science

Date submitted



Approved competency code

  • LBIO
  • Biology

Approved date

Online / Virtual