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The Authentic Exploratory Research (AER) Program is an independent research course in which students propose their own driving questions in order to explore their passions and career pathways in a variety of fields. Our program is inspired by Palo Alto Unified School Districts highly successful Advanced Authentic Research program.

Students are matched with adult mentors to aid in their research and analysis. Mentors include LBHS staff, Industry experts or leaders, and university-level academics. Students can conduct their projects through various approaches including internships, action projects, and academic research, all of which culminate in an end-of-the-year publication and symposium. Students are expected to spend about 60 hours per semester on coursework, roughly half of which are on the project itself and the other half on instruction, reflection, organization, and other weekly tasks.

Throughout their experience in the AER program, students will learn essential academic skills in preparation for post-secondary education, such as research, argumentation, critical thinking; as well as life and career skills, such as time management, communication, professionalism, and organization.

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AER News

Laguna Beach High School Welcomed the 2021-2022 Authentic Exploratory Research Program Mentors

 

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. - On Monday, September 13, our second Authentic Exploratory Research (AER) program cohort gathered in the LBHS Senior Patio for a welcome breakfast. Handpicked mentors connected individually with their mentees over breakfast as they began to learn more about one another and engage in preliminary discussions around the mentee's year-long project.

The AER independent research course provides the opportunity for students to propose their own driving questions in order to explore their passions and career pathways in a variety of fields. Students are purposefully matched with adult mentors to aid in their research and analysis. From Fashion Designers to Gaming Industry founders, mentors include Industry experts and leaders, and university-level academics.

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