Academic Programs Archives - Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

Academic Programs

Academic Programs

IMSA’s academic program includes a wide variety of learning opportunities. In addition to disciplinary courses of study, IMSA students have the opportunity to do Independent Study, participate in Student Inquiry, Mentorship, and TALENT (Total Applied Learning for Entrepreneurs), take advantage of the Great Minds Program, attend Interdisciplinary Seminars, and pursue their passions during Intersession Week. All of these learning experiences are driven by the core four attributes of our Core Competency: competency-driven, inquiry-based, problem-centered, and integrated. Those attributes serve as design principles for the development, implementation and assessment of IMSA’s overall curriculum.

IMSA’s Core Competency

Competency-driven learning experiences are those which enable students (1) to acquire strong bases of disciplinary content knowledge and skills, key ideas of the disciplines, and connections among these ideas; (2) to use the ideas, processes, and tools of the disciplines for acquisition and generation of new knowledge; and (3) to apply knowledge when addressing issues and solving real world problems.

Inquiry-based learning experiences are those which promote analytic thinking, knowledge generation and application, and construction of meaning through mindful investigation driven by compelling questions that have engaged, or have the potential for engaging, the learner’s curiosity.

Problem-centered learning experiences are those in which learners grapple with complex, meaningful and open-ended problems, and work toward their resolution.

Integrative learning experiences are those which forge meaningful connections of concepts, constructs, and principles within and across academic subjects and real-world situations.

At the heart of IMSA’s academic program are a wide variety of challenging, all college preparatory courses in mathematics, science, the arts, and humanities, emphasizing essential concepts and promoting student collaboration. Our students become leaders who understand that knowledge crosses disciplines and has real-world applications.