interstate high-way system

Philippine Science High School System

The Philippine Science High School System is a specialized public high school system in the Philippines that operates as an attached agency of the Philippine Department of Science and Technology.

The PSHS System offers scholarships to Filipino students who are exceptionally gifted in the sciences and mathematics, "helping the country reach a critical mass of professionals in science and technology." Admission to the PSHS is by competitive examination only, and only Filipino citizens are eligible to attend. Graduates of the PSHS are bound by law to major in the pure & applied sciences, mathematics, or engineering upon entering college.

The school holds the highest percentage of entrance test passers in premiere colleges in the Philippines like the University of the Philippines (Batch 2008: ~97%), De La Salle University, and the Ateneo de Manila University. Also, Philippine Science High School is known for its outstanding performance in bagging the top scholarships of these universities such as the Oblation and Intarmed Scholarships for University of the Philippines, Merit Scholarships and Director's List for Ateneo de Manila University, and Star Scholarships for De La Salle University.

PSHS also has two publications, namely The Science Scholar, and "Lagablab", where Pisay is definitely one of the national leaders and award baggers in competitions. However, Pisay is more known for its more than impressive performances in both national and international science, technology, and mathematics competitions, such as the Sipnayan, Kapnayan, Metrobank-MTAP-DepEd Math Challenge, Philippine Mathematics Olympiad, Pisikaalaman-Philippine Physics Olympiad, Philippine Chemistry Olympiad, Australian Mathematics Competition and Australian Chemistry Quiz. Through private funding, students enter, bring honor and successfully reap awards in the Taiwan International Science Fair and the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair; and of course, the prestigious International Science Olympiads such as the International Math Olympiad, International Junior and Science Olympiad and International Physics Olympiad.

A movie has also been released in honor of Philippine Science. Entitled "Pisay", the movie has acclaimed not only national recognition, as it won Best Director in the 2007 Cinemalaya awards, but also international recognition as it was sent to the Toronto International Film Festival. "Pisay" was directed by an alumnus of the school, Aureus Solito.


For 24 years, the PSHS was a single campus located at Agham Road, Diliman, Quezon City where the top 240 examinees in a National Competitive Examinations held yearly were accepted as government scholars.

From the first campus in Diliman, Quezon City, the PSHS has expanded into a nationwide system of nine campuses:

The main campus has around 30 students in each class, with 8 classes per batch, in a total of about 240 students in each year level.

The regional campuses accept 90 freshmen scholars every year.

In the near future, each of the country's administrative regions is envisioned to provide for a PSHS campus.

System Organization

The Board of Trustees is the highest policy making body of the PSHS System. The Executive Director coordinates the implementation of these policies and guidelines.

The Executive Committee, composed of the directors of the different PSHS campuses and chaired by the Executive Director, is a collegial body that recommends policies and guidelines for the consideration of the Board.

The PSHS System Board of Trustees is composed of eight ex oficio members and five private sector representatives.

The PSHS campuses are headed by directors who are members of the PSHS Executive Committee (Execom).

The current campus directors are:

  • Dr. Helen E. Caintic, Main Campus
  • Dr. Larry L. Cabatic , Ilocos Region Campus
  • Dr. Salvador Romo, Cagayan Valley Campus
  • Mrs. Elsie G. Ferrer, Bicol Region Campus
  • Dr. Josette T. Biyo, Western Visayas Campus
  • Dr. Pedrito G. Padilla, Eastern Visayas Campus
  • Dr. Florita A. Pontillas (Officer-in-Charge), Central Visayas Campus
  • Dr. Ciriaco M. Gillera (Officer-in-Charge), Central Mindanao Campus
  • Mrs. Delia C. Legaspino, Southern Mindanao Campus


The Philippine Science High School was officially established by Republic Act 3661 which was signed into law in 1963 by President Diosdado Macapagal. This charter mandates the PSHS “to offer on a free scholarship basis a secondary course with emphasis on subjects pertaining to service with the end in view of preparing its students for a science career." The school started operations in 1964.

National Scientist Dr. Gregorio Velasquez led the PSHS through its first three years of infancy. The campus started in a small rented GSIS-owned property along the Quezon Memorial Circle. It was in 1970, that PSHS started building on a 75,000 square metre lot along Agham Road in Diliman, Quezon City.

By the end of the eighties, PSHS started to spread across the nation. The first regional campuses were built, starting with the Mindanao Campus (now Southern Mindanao Campus), located in Davao City, in 1988.

The PSHS System Law (R.A. 8496) was signed by President Fidel V. Ramos in 1997 that established the PSHS System and unified all the existing campuses into a single system of governance and management. Thus, the PSHS continues fulfilling its mandate “to offer, on a free scholarship basis, a secondary course with special emphasis on subjects pertaining to the sciences, with the end view of preparing its students for a science career”.

Academics and Admissions

Admissions Process

Roughly 17,000 students take the Philippine Science High School exams annually. Those who achieve the highest scores are admitted to the PSHS Main Campus, located in Quezon City. The rest are admitted to campuses in other parts of the Philippines.

Admission to the PSHS System is through the PSHS System National Competitive Examination (PSHS-NCE). It is a two-step screening given to all qualified elementary students. To be eligible for admission, applicants must be Filipino students who must belong to the top 10% of the graduating class or must have special aptitude in science and math.

The first screening is the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). It consists of tests in Verbal, Abstract Reasoning and Mathematics. The second screening is the Science Math Aptitude Test (SMAT). It consists of tests in Science and Mathematics. Examinations are held during the first part of the school year.

Alumni profile

Roughly seventy percent (70%) of alumni are in the sciences, engineering, and mathematics. The rest are in the humanities, journalism, law, business administration, accountancy, public administration, the military and religious ministry.


First Year Curriculum

Core Units
Integrated Science 2
Elementary Algebra (Mathematics 1) 2
Communication Arts I (English 1) 2
Introduction to Computer Science (Computer Science 1) 1
Sining ng Komunikasyon (Filipino 1) 1
Philippine History & Government (Social Science 1) 1
Introduction to Values Education (Values Education 1) 1
Physical Ed., Health & Music I (PEHM 1) 1
Art I & Drafting I (one semester each) 1
Earth Science 1
Technology Preparation 0.5
TOTAL 13.5

Second Year Curriculum

Core Units
Introduction to Biology (Biology 1) 2
Inorganic Chemistry Part I (Chemistry 1) 1
General Physics (Physics 1) 1
Plane Geometry (Mathematics 2) 1
Advanced Algebra (Mathematics 3) 1
Introduction to Programming (Computer Science 2) 1
Communication Arts II (English 2) 1
Pagsusuri at Pagpapahalagang Pampanitikan (Filipino 2) 1
Asian Studies (Social Science 2) 1
Values Development (Values Education 2) 1
P.E., Health, Music II (PEHM 2) 1
Art II / Drafting II 1
Environmental Science / Technology Skills 1
TOTAL 14.0

Third Year Curriculum

Core Units
Advanced Biology I (Biology 2) 1
Advanced Physics I (Physics 2) 1
Inorganic Chemistry II (Chemistry 2) 2
Advanced Algebra and Trigonometry (Mathematics 4) 1.5
Software Project Planning (Computer Science 3) 1
Communication Arts, Asian Literature (English 3) 1
Malikhaing Pagsulat (Filipino 3) 1
World History (Social Science 3) 1
Physical Education and Health III (PEH) 1
Principles of Science/Technology Research (Research 1) 1
Elective 1
Laboratory Techniques
Food Science
Problem-Based Physics
Selected Topics in Number Theory
Basic Robotics
Data Communications
Popular Law
Creative Writing
English Journalism I
Filipino Journalism I
Science Summer Internship Program (SUMMER)
Field Biology (SUMMER)
TOTAL 12.5

Fourth Year Curriculum

Core Units
Advanced Biology I (Biology III) 1
Advanced Physics II (Physics III) 2
Advanced Chemistry (Chemistry III) 1
Elementary Analysis (Mathematics V) 1
Special Topics in Computer Science (Computer Science IV) 1
Communication Arts (American and European Literature) (English IV) 1
Panitikang Pilipino (Filipino IV) 1
Economics (Social Science IV) 1
Physical Education and Health IV (PEH IV), Preparatory Military Training (PMT) 1
Experimental Science, Technology Research (Research II) 1
Electives 1
Digital Design
Visual Communication
Cell and Molecular Biology
Journalism II (Filipino or English)
Selected Topics in Mathematics
Theater Arts
Advanced Electronics
Cisco Networking 1
Embedded Systems
TOTAL 12.0

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