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The Tech PA Unofficial Guide to the Tech Curriculum

The below table attempts to give a broad overview of the Tech curriculum.

The table aggregates Tech's general graduation requirements, the Major requirements, and electives.  If you want to help your student plan out her four years at Tech, we recommend reading the above three links and constructing a target curriculum on paper or in a spreadsheet.

A big caveat on the below table:  it only represents a very generalized overview.  Students enter with many differences in the classes they have taken in middle school in math, foreign language (LOTE), and science.  We've attempted to explain the most common variations in the notes section.


Also, approximately half of a student's classes in 11th and 12th grade will be Major classes or electives.  There are large differences in the number of courses each Major requires per year, so if you want to map out a target curriculum, you'll have to make an assumption on Major.

Finally, the order of classes in the below table is illustrative only.  It is of course not the case that every student takes math first period, English second period, etc.

Notes on 9th Grade

Math:  Most students have taken Algebra I in 8th grade, however many students have not.  Students who have not taken Algebra I in 8th grade will take Algebra I in 9th grade instead of Geometry.  They would then take Geometry in 10th grade, Algebra II in 11th grade, and Precalculus in 12th grade.  In recent years, students who need to take AP Calculus in 12th grade to fulfill a Major requirement have been offered the opportunity to take Precalculus at Tech during the summer between 11th and 12th grade.

Global History:  In recent years, roughly half of students in Global History have been offered the opportunity to take AP Global History in the second semester of 9th grade and all of 10th grade.  The offer is made based on grades from the first semester of 9th grade.  Students who are not offered AP Global History (or decline an offer), will continue in Regents History for the second semester of 9th grade and all of 10th grade.

Foreign Language (LOTE):  Some students enter with substantial background in a foreign language.  See the policy for acceleration.

Physics:  Most students have taken Living Environment (biology) in 8th grade.  They will take Regents Physics in 9th grade.  Students who have not taken Living Environment in 8th grade will take Living Environment in 9th grade instead of Regents Physics.  These students will then take Regents Physics or AP Physics I in 11th grade.  Taking at least 1 year of physics is a requirement at Tech.

Musical Groups:  Tech offers music courses in Band, Chorus, and Orchestra (violin, viola, cello, and bass).  Musical groups are elective courses offered during regular class periods.  PA thoughts:  for students interested in music, these groups are awesome.  Many students really enjoy these courses and say great things about the teachers.  Musical groups are generally much less stress than other classes at Tech.

Notes on 10th Grade

For most students, the 10th grade curriculum is entirely determined by the courses assigned in 9th grade.  It's a good idea to start thinking about a Major, as the Major selection process runs in the spring of 10th grade.

Notes on 11th Grade

There is a fair amount of variability in the 11th grade curriculum based on Major.  Majors generally require 2, 3, or 4 periods of courses in 11th grade.  However, if the Major requires 4 periods, often at least one of those classes fulfills a general Tech requirement (e.g. AP US History in the Social Science major fulfills the US History requirement).

Students who did not take Regents Physics in 9th grade will take Regents Physics (single period) or AP Physics I (double period) in 11th grade.

Popular 11th grade electives for students who have room in their schedule are AP Statistics and AP European History.

Notes on 12th Grade

There is a lot of variability in 12th grade due to Majors and electives.  Most Majors require 3 or 4 periods periods of courses in 12th grade (one Major requires just 2 periods).  Students have significant choice in electives:

Math:  Students who are taking AP Calculus in 12th grade can take AB (single period) or BC (double period).

English:  There are many elective English classes.  Students choose one.

Government or Economics:  Students can take 1) one semester each of Government and Economics, 2) AP Government, or 3) AP Macroeconomics.

Foreign Language/LOTE:  Many students choose to take an AP language course in 12th grade.  Among other things, a 4 or 5 on an AP language test can often fulfill a college language requirement or allow for advanced coursework in college.

Other Electives:  Check out the full list of electives

Current as of summer 2018.  This page is prepared by the PA, based on information from the school.  To make sure you have the most up-to-date information, it's a good idea to cross-check with info from the school's website.  Also, check with your student's guidance counselor for any specific questions on your student's schedule.

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