Improvements to AP® Biology and AP® Chemistry Kits

by Carolina Staff
students gain a deeper understanding of science topics

Discover new features in kits that support the AP® curriculum and your classroom.

Over the past several years, we have changed our AP® Biology and AP® Chemistry teaching and learning materials based on input from teachers and students, as well as on changes to the curricula. Now our Carolina Investigations® for Use with AP® Biology and AP® Chemistry kits are better than ever! You can find these exciting features in many of our revised kits.

Updated overview section

Each manual begins with an overview of how the laboratory investigation correlates to the applicable 2019 course exam and description (CED), providing information on the course content (unit, topics, enduring understandings, learning objectives, and essential knowledge) as well as the science practices. Use this as a guide to where in a particular course the lab would reinforce the knowledge and skills that students are expected to demonstrate as they work towards mastery.

Overview Section

Expected prior knowledge and skills list

Because no two classes or students are the same, a list of expected prior knowledge and skills is provided. This ensures that you know what information and skills we expect students will have before beginning the laboratory investigation.

Prior knowledge and time requirements

Scheduling made simple with time requirements and materials sections

As with all our teacher’s manuals, we provide estimated time requirements and a listing of materials, both “supplied’ and “needed, but not supplied.” These planning tools make it easier to schedule your lab and gather materials.


Extended background information

In addition to the background information provided in the student’s guide, the teacher’s guide offers a more in-depth look at the topic. This allows you to be the expert in front of your students and confidently teach the curriculum.

Save valuable time with the preparation and procedures sections

The Preparation and Procedures sections provide detailed information about what needs to be done both before and during the lab. Here you will find detailed instructions on how to get the materials ready, like preparing solutions, and additional resources to help ensure the lab goes as smoothly as possible.

The following are some sections that may appear within the preparation and procedures:

  • Teaching Tips: Has helpful pointers including but not limited to troubleshooting, classroom management, or other tips that we think will help you have a successful experience.
Teaching Tips
  • Planning Tips: Offers time-saving notes on how materials might be prepared in advance, limitations on prepared materials, and suggestions for conducting the laboratory activities on alternate class and time schedules.
Planning Tips
  • Differentiated Instruction: Suggests ways that the content might be modified or adjusted for learners of different levels and abilities.
Differentiated Instruction
  • Using Digital Resources: At point of use, this section explains how the included digital resources might be used to supplement the hands-on investigation. The student guide is provided as a PDF and the assessment questions are provided as an editable Word® document. These resources give you the flexibility to decide what materials best suit your students’ needs.
Digital Resources
  • Curriculum Connections: Presents ways that the information or skills may be applicable to other parts of the course curriculum or to other courses. This can help with spiraling the curriculum and identifying relationships.
Curriculum Connections
  • Misconceptions: Supplies common misconceptions that students may have about a concept, typical reasons why the misconceptions may exist, and advice on how to address them.

Sample data section

Each manual comes equipped with a full set of sample data for the guided investigations collected by following the provided student procedure. Compare the sample data to in-class results to spot-check data collection errors, verify proper equipment and instrument functionality, or provide data for the unexpected, such as an absent student.

Sample Data

Sample answers section

Sample answers are included for all of the questions in the student guide. These answers guide you in evaluating your students understanding as they progress toward concept mastery.

Sample Answers

Big Idea assessment questions

Big Idea assessment questions are intended to be used upon completion of the lab. These questions were designed to mirror the rigor of questions that may be found on AP® tests and feature suggested task verbs from the CED. Combine these with existing test prep methods to foster exam preparedness.

Big Idea Assessment

Real-world connections

Because many of the concepts in AP® Chemistry are difficult to observe, we provide real-world connections for your students. These connections not only help students make sense of abstract concepts, but also answer the common question, “Where will I ever see or use this again?”

Real-world Connections

Statistics and quantitative skills section

Due to the emphasis in AP® Biology on analyzing data collected during labs using statistics and other analytical techniques, we now include a statistics and quantitative skills section. In labs where the need for these skills is more implicit, like the use of chi-squared in population genetics, the statistics are incorporated into the investigation.

Statistics and Quantitative Skills Connections

Connect your AP® course to state standards

To support teachers who are required to teach the AP® course as a first-year course, we include the NGSS performance expectations from that the lab correlates to. These can help you match your AP® course to state standards.

NGSS Correlations

Contact us anytime

At Carolina, we seek to continuously improve our labs, your experience, and the student experience. If you have suggestions, please let us know. We hope you’ll take the opportunity to do one (or all) of our labs with your students!

*AP® is a trademark registered and/or owned by the College Board®, which was not involved in the production of, and does not endorse, these products.

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