• This is a list of all the current Virtual Initial Credit/Elective (VIC) courses that The Virtual Academy of Rochester (VAR) offers, including the number of credit, any prerequisites and course description.



    Art History I

    1.0 Art Credit; Prerequisites: Global History I

    Students are introduced to artwork chronologically from pre-history through the late 20th Century. The Art History I course is comprised of Art History IA and Art History IB to give a complete look at the evolution of art. Art from all major periods are examined, with emphasis on major contributing ideas, movements throughout history and an in-depth look at painting, sculpture and architecture. This course will give students a complete view of how history shapes art and at times, how art shapes history. Students will learn through online study and discussion, virtual gallery tours and individual assignments. This is a full-year elective that is open to all students in grades 11 and 12. The prerequisites for this course include a passing grade in Global History, an interest in art and a commitment to success.

    Art History IA

    0.5 Art Credit 

    Part 1 of the Art History I class.

    Art History IB

    0.5 Art Credit; Prerequisites: Art History IA

    Part 2 of the Art History I class.


    Computer Science

    Computer Programming I

     1.0 Math/ Science Credit or ELECTIVE Credit; Prerequisites: Algebra I

    An introduction to the theory and practice of computer programming, the emphasis of this course is on techniques of program development within the object-oriented paradigm. Topics include, but are not limited to control structures, data types, error handling, design cycle, math methods, simple data structures, and basic concepts of software development. Java is the programming language used in the course.

    Digital Information Technology

    1.0 CTE ELECTIVE Credit 

    This virtual course provides you with the foundational skills needed for future careers in a variety of technological fields. You’ll explore emerging technologies, digital design, Microsoft Office online applications, operating systems, and much more! Learn your strengths and how they relate to potential career opportunities.

    Foundations of Programming

    1.0 CTE ELECTIVE Credit 

    Learn the skills required to be competitive in today’s high-tech workforce. This course covers the fundamentals of programming using the computer language Python. It provides you with the concepts, techniques, and processes associated with computer programming and software development. You’ll also explore the vast programming career opportunities available in this high-demand field.

    Procedural Programming

    1.0 CTE ELECTIVE Credit; Prerequisite: Foundations of Programming

    Do you want to learn higher-level coding skills? This course teaches advanced programming concepts using the computer language Python. You will learn techniques and processes associated with computer programming and software development.



    ELA IV College Prep

    1.0 English Credit; Prerequisites:  85% or higher in English II or English II Honors

    This virtual course prepares for the demands of reading, writing, and communicating in college and beyond. It specifically focuses on honing skills in creative and analytical writing, as well as applies concepts learned to closely read and analyze both contemporary and historical informational texts.

    English IV Mosaics

    1.0 English Credit; Prerequisites: English III

    The goal of this course is to have every graduate of the Rochester City School District leave us as a civic leader, who has a sound understanding and appreciation of whom they are and their value within their community. This will empower the student to become more open-minded towards the world, and to recognize that we are all different, but we all have many of the same basic needs. Students will be exposed to the high demands of rigorous study including, but not limited to such activities as: mindful seminars and discussions; research-based investigative work; expressive forms of sharing learning; public speaking; purposeful community services chosen and performed by every student; independent and group work; and reading and writing at college-level expectations. The core of the class will revolve around routine discussions based upon cultural topics, current events, and class readings. Students will reflect frequently utilizing responses to capture immediate thoughts and then later, incorporating these learnings into a more comprehensive artistic expression of learning.

    Literature to Film

    1.0 English Credit or 1.0 ELECTIVE Credit; Prerequisites: English III

    Film, while it may be influenced by written pieces of text, should often be considered an entirely unique piece of art for the purposes of critique and analysis. This course explores the multifaceted relationship between film and literature.  Selected novels, short stories and plays are analyzed in relation to film versions of the same works in order to gain an understanding of the possibilities—and problems—involved in the transposition to film. Students will also be asked to look at the literature and film from varying perspectives and contexts (i.e. cultural, historical, biographical, political, economic, etc.).



    Abnormal Psychology Thru Film

    0.5 Social Studies ELECTIVE Credit; Prerequisites: Global History

    This elective will explore abnormal human behavior through film.   The films/topics covered will include, but are not limited to, The Lord of the Flies (Nature v Nurture), The Matrix (How the Mind and Body Interact), A Beautiful Mind (Schizophrenia), and I Am Sam (Intellectual Disability).  The course will focus on basic foundations of the Psychology discipline and specific abnormal behaviors that are classified by the American Psychological Association (APA) as disorders. Students will view films that address these topics and then respond through analytical writing and group discussions.



    American Sign Language I

    1.0 Foreign Language Credit 

    Includes fingerspelling and basic sign vocabulary, allowing for immediate conversation at the simple sentence level. Vocabulary is built on signs from home, school, food, family, weather, jobs, feelings and descriptors. Aspects of Deaf Culture will be explored, including characteristics, famous role models and its history.

    American Sign Language II

    1.0 Foreign Language Credit; Prerequisite: American Sign Language I

    Students will be able to comprehend messages and short conversations when they contain frequently used grammatical features and word order patterns. Understand main ideas and information when watching signed television broadcasts, instructional videotapes, and films on topics of interest to them or to the general public. Express themselves clearly, using proper ASL grammar on familiar topics. Lastly, understand and continue to use the rules of Deaf Culture.

    Mandarin Chinese I

    1.0 Foreign Language Credit

    This is an introductory course of Mandarin Chinese. The objective is to develop communicative skills as well as cultural awareness. Through learning simplified Chinese characters and Pinyin phonetic system on the virtual learning environment, learners will do reading and writing, discuss real-world topics, and explore the social background of the language. Besides online study and online work submission, the teacher meets with learners face to face on a regular basis to address individual learning needs.

    Mandarin Chinese II

    1.0 Foreign Language Credit; Prerequisite: Mandarin Chinese I 

    You will learn more about Chinese food, clothing, art and history as magnified through language. More emphasis will be placed on written forms of Mandarin. A school exam completes this course.



    Advanced Algebra with Financial Applications




    ESF Global Environment (Dual Credit)

    1.0 Science ELECTIVE DUAL Credit; Prerequisites: 3 Regents science courses before taking the course.

    The Global Environment will help you to gain the knowledge and tools to make informed decisions regarding the environment and the earth’s future and to be able to understand the connections between such varied topics as pollution, deforestation, climate change, acid rain, soil depletion, economics, evolution, history and social justice. The course stresses a science based systems approach in evaluating problems and potential solutions as well as the critical role of energy in many of the environmental challenges facing the world.