7th Grade Pennsylvania Science Standards

Instructor: Shelby Golden
You can check out this article when you're ready to learn more about Pennsylvania's 7th grade science standards. Find out what students in this grade will study and explore useful educational options.

7th Grade Science Standards

Pennsylvania breaks down science standards for 7th graders into the major categories of Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences and Earth and Space Sciences. In addition, seventh grade students will continue developing specific technology and engineering skills. The specific content and engineering standards are detailed below, as well as links to relevant Study.com courses. Students can access these middle-school courses to view short video lessons, take interactive quizzes and complete overarching course exams. If they need extra help, they can even reach out to a content expert with questions.

Biological Sciences

Students will have the chance to explore three core areas of biological science in 7th grade.

Organisms and Cells

The characteristics of different organisms will be covered during this grade. Students will study how organisms make use of energy. They will also focus on life cycles, cells and life processes. Finally, students will cover how organisms interact with one another.


While studying genetics, students will explore inherited traits and patterns of inheritance, as well as different forms of reproduction. They will study biotechnology and the effects of selective breeding. Students will also learn about characteristics that are shared among organisms.


Instruction will be provided regarding natural selection, extinction and mutations. Students will also spend time studying the theory of evolution.

Physical Sciences

Two aspects of the physical sciences will be studied in this grade.


Teachers will provide instruction regarding atoms, elements, compounds and mixtures. In addition, students will explore chemical reactions and the properties of matter.


Studying physics will allow students to learn more about velocity, displacement and acceleration. They will also study energy transformation, convection, conduction and radiation. Electrical currents will be discussed, as well as heat, light and sound energy.

Earth and Space Sciences

In 7th grade students will explore two aspects of Earth and space science.

Earth Structure and Processes

Kids will be able to learn about the rock cycle and the Earth's layers. They will also study topography, as well as geologic time and processes. Water systems, meteorology and the atmosphere will be discussed, along with the physical features of the Earth.

Origin of the Universe

Exploring this topic will allow students to learn about the impact of gravity in the solar system. Kids will also study interactions between the Earth, Sun and Moon, as well as positions of stars and the location of various celestial objects.

Technology and Engineering

In addition to science content, 7th graders in Pennsylvania will also gain knowledge in four engineering and technology-focused strands.

Scope of Technology

Teachers will introduce concepts like innovation and invention to students, as well as the process and function of technology for specific purposes. Study time will also be spent on observing the relationship of technology to other fields of study.


Students will learn how varying technologies have evolved and developed over time. Curriculum will also focus on the impact of technology on humans, the environment, economics and society as a whole.

Engineering Design

In 7th grade, students will be exposed to varying principles of engineering including modeling, testing and creating systems to find solutions. They will also learn about creative design and problem-solving methods.

Technology in the World

Teachers will introduce students to technological tools designed for problem solving. Students will learn to locate trends to analyze the influence of technology on daily life.

Design in the World

Time will be spent learning about technology in medicine, animal care, energy use, media, and food and fuel production. Students will be asked to analyze technological efficiency and the practical impacts of technology on society.

7th Grade Academic Competencies

No matter what scientific concept students are studying, students in the 7th grade will be assessed on applying specific scientific skills. These types of scientific skills include demonstrating an understanding of scientific theories, grasping scientific questions and carrying out a scientific investigation. Kids should also be comfortable using mathematics to practice scientific concepts. Students will need to create models and explanations for what they are learning, and to consider explanations they may not have thought of on their own. Furthermore, students will be assessed on their ability to use scientific tools for gathering data, and to logically develop explanations of scientific principles.

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