Apologia vs. Science Shepherd Biology

Overall, the Science Shepherd Biology curriculum is comparable to Apologia. Both are written to the student and are designed to work well in a home where the parent doesn’t have advanced scientific knowledge. The main difference is that Apologia covers basic human anatomy in its General Science course, whereas Science Shepherd covers it in this Biology course. Both books cover the same material (minus the human anatomy), just in a different order. For instance, ecology is the last chapter in Science Shepherd but it is a middle chapter in Apologia.

The chart below gives a detailed comparison. Either textbook can be used in a CM way by encouraging narration after sections of chapters, and pairing it with nature study and living science books as available.

Apologia Biology, 2nd EditionScience Shepherd Biology
Student Book: 576 pages actual text; includes study questions, experiments, and extra chapter reviewsStudent Book: 625 pages actual text; includes study questions and vocabulary
Experiments integrated into text. Student keeps a separate lab notebook describing the experiment in detail. Experiments in separate book. Student fills in details on a pre-printed lab sheet. There are critical thinking questions with the labs. Answers to critical thinking questions are in the lab manual.
16 modules/chapters, designed to fill one year of study34 chapters, designed to fill one year of study
16 chapter tests, plus 4 quarterly tests 15 chapter tests. Each test covers more than one chapter
Covers cell biology, chemistry of life, classification, DNA, RNA, genetics, ecology, evolution/creation (Basic human anatomy is covered in General Science.) Covers cell biology, chemistry of life, classification, DNA, RNA, genetics, ecology, evolution/creation, basic human anatomy
Study guide and test questions are usually open-ended questions. (Name two of _____. Describe how ____works. What happens when ___.) Answer key tells what each test question is worth in points and how to grade the questions. Study guide and test questions are a mix of open-ended questions and true/false. Answer key does not tell what each test question is worth in points or how to grade the questions.
Cost for Student Book includes the Solutions and Tests Manual.

Extras available: entire course on CD-rom, multi-media CD-rom (videos of some experiments, other videos to explain some of the material in the text), and an MP3 audio of the text.

Cost for Student Book includes test booklet and answer key/parent handbook. Lab manual costs extra.

Extras available: Lab DVD and Enhanced Questions and Answers DVD.

37 labs, a bit more in-depth than Science Shepherd, with step-by-step instructions.20 labs with optional Lab DVD, on which the instructor performs most of the labs.

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