top of page

Integrated Science 1


31 weeks

About the Course

As the first course in Thacher’s revised science curriculum, Integrated Science 1 will introduce students to the fundamental practices of the scientific method (asking testable questions, generating and testing hypotheses, quantitatively evaluating the data collected to confirm or refute hypotheses, revising hypotheses, and repeating the testing and analysis process) while exposing students to foundational knowledge in physics and chemistry. Students will conduct hands-on laboratory work and explore real-world case studies so that they come to appreciate that science is creative, exciting, relevant and fun. As part of their experience, students will be introduced to formal scientific communication by reading an accessible article published in a professional science journal and identifying its major components (abstract, background & introduction, procedure, results (including tables, graphs), discussion, conclusion, references). Students will then compile their own tables and graphs in their laboratory experiments following those norms established in professional science journal articles, and they will generate and compare their rubrics for peer evaluation of lab reports based on the major components of professional science journal articles.

Your Instructor

Dr. Jon Swift

Dr. Jon Swift

Jon was born in New York but grew up surfing and playing sports in North County San Diego. His first loves are poetry and music. However, Jon’s fascination with the natural world led him into the fields of astronomy and astrophysics, where he has published research in several areas of specialization, including cosmology, star formation, exoplanets, and astronomical instrumentation. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from UCLA with a BS in physics, and earned an MA and a PhD in astronomy & astrophysics from UC Berkeley. At the Thacher School, Jon redesigned and renovated the campus observatory which now includes a fully automated, research-grade telescope. In addition to directing the observatory and maintaining a vibrant astronomy program where students are able to participate in relevant research, Jon teaches astronomy, physics, mathematics, and data science. Outside the classroom, Jon has developed the Thacher surfing program, which he coaches in the fall. Jon lives on the Thacher campus with his wife Gloria, daughter Annika, and son Ansel.

bottom of page