« Return to AACT homepage

AACT Member-Only Content

You have to be an AACT member to access this content, but good news: anyone can join!

Need Help?

Teaching Methods

How to qualify for Honors Chemistry?

Started almost 2 years ago by Frederick Schlick.

How does your school decide which students take Honors Chemistry? As the department chair in my high school, I am trying to establish some parameters. Right now I am looking at current grade (10,11,12), Pa Keystone Biology score (Pass with score >1500), last year's science course, and last year's math course.
Any suggestions? Thanks.


  • Amy Wiese

    Posted over 1 year ago

    Hi! I work at a public high school in Kansas and we just started offering an Honors Chemistry option. For us, placement in the honors course requires successful completion of Honors Biology, and completion or concurrent enrollment in HONORS Algebra II. The latter is the big one, if a student drops from Honors Algebra II, it will also mean a drop to General Chemistry. Again, this is our first year doing so! Good Luck!

  • Anita Giardina

    Posted over 1 year ago

    My district is currently trying to encourage us to teach a hybrid online chemistry class that will replace our CCP Introduction to Chemistry course, that is a college chemistry course for non-science majors. The CCP course replaced Honors chemistry and my district is reluctant to bring back that title and course. We currently offer regular chemistry, CCP chemistry, AP chemistry and Honors Organic Chemistry. Please share your thoughts and current chemistry offerings at your school.

  • Christine Taylor

    Posted almost 2 years ago

    I work at an independent school. We look at several factors: grade in Biology, PSAT Math score, Math placement for 10th grade. To be placed in honors a student must be recommended by the Honors Biology teacher or have a minimum 25 PSAT Math and concurrent enrollment in Advanced or Honors Algebra 2.

  • Linda Cummings

    Posted almost 2 years ago

    For our school, we found that students should be in or have completed Algebra II to take Honors Chemistry. A high biology grade (our usual 9th grade science) is a not a helpful indicator, but a low biology grade probably means they should not be in Honors Chemistry. As Heather said, math is the best indicator of chemistry performance.

  • Heather Weck

    Posted almost 2 years ago

    Hi Frederick,
    Im my school in PA we found that enrollment and success in honors math courses are the best predictors for success in honors chemistry. According to our data, taking math at an honors levels outweighs having taken biology at the honors level (biology being the precursor to chem). Good luck!

  • Kimberly Duncan

    Posted almost 2 years ago

    Hi Frederick - I worked in a K-12 independent school in Northern Virginia. Chemistry was the required 10th grade course and the options were Chemistry and Honors Chemistry. Our required freshman class was Physics, which was taught using the ASU modeling curriculum. Placement in Honors Chem required sustained high grades (B+ or greater) in Physics plus a recommendation based on work ethic from the Physics instructor. We also required that student had completed or were taking Geometry for placement in the Honors Chemistry class. These requirements seemed to work well for our community.