AP Computer Science Principles

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Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles (also called AP CSP) is an AP Computer Science course and examination offered by the College Board to high school students as an opportunity to earn college credit for a college-level computer science course. AP Computer Science Principles[1] is meant to be the equivalent of a first-semester course in computer science. Assessment for AP Computer Science Principles is divided into two parts, both an end of course exam as well as the creation of artifacts throughout the course.[2]

The AP Computer Science Principles Exam was administered for the first time on May 5, 2017.

Topic Outline[edit]

Curriculum Overview[3]

The framework focuses on computational thinking practices which are applied throughout the curriculum. The concept outline included in the curriculum is divided into seven units called "Big Ideas". Each unit contains a series of "Learning Objectives". Each "Learning Objective" is a general benchmark of student performance or understanding which has an associated "Enduring Understanding". An "Enduring Understanding" is a core comprehension which students should retain well after completing the course. Each "Learning Objective" is split into multiple "Essential Knowledge" standards, which are specific facts or content which the student must know to demonstrate mastery of the learning objective when assessed.

Computational Thinking Practices[4] Concept Outline[5]
  • P1: Connecting Computing
  • P2: Creating Computational Artifacts
  • P3: Abstracting
  • P4: Analyzing Problems and Artifacts
  • P5: Communicating
  • P6: Collaborating
  • Big Idea 1: Creativity
  • Big Idea 2: Abstraction
  • Big Idea 3: Data and Information
  • Big Idea 4: Algorithms
  • Big Idea 5: Programming
  • Big Idea 6: The Internet
  • Big Idea 7: Global Impact
Curriculum Course Delivery Programming Language / Environment Availability/License Support
CodeCombat [6] Web Based Student Content
Web Based Teacher Resources
JavaScript
Python
HTML
Available for Download at No Cost
Copyright CodeCombat Inc.
Free Online Teacher Support
Free Online Self Paced
The Beauty and Joy of Computing [7] Web Based Student Content
edX
Snap! (programming language) Available for Download at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Free Live
Free Online Instructor Led
Free Online Self Paced
Paid Instructor Professional Development
Mobile CSP [8] Web Based Student Content
Web Based Teacher Resources and Dashboard
App Inventor for Android Available for Download at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Free Professional Development (for up to 200 teachers):

Online Self Paced PD
Online Instructor-led PD
Regional Instructor-led PD

Academic Year Support:
Free Live
Instructor led

UTeach CSP[9] Web Based Instructor Content
Web Based Student Content
Scratch
Processing
Free printable student content
Paid dynamic instructor and student content
Free Live
Paid Live
Paid Digital Year of Mentoring & Support
PLTW CSP [10] Canvas LMS
Printable Student Content
Scratch
App Inventor
Python
HTML
Available only after Paid Training
Copyright PLTW
Paid Live
Code.org CSP [11] Web Based Student Content App Lab, Javascript Available for Download at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Free Live
Free Online Instructor Led
Free Online Self Paced
CS50 AP [12] Wikispaces Scratch
C
Available for Download at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Free Live
Free Online Self Paced
CS Matters[13] Face to Face Python Available for Download at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Professional Development:

Online Python

EarSketch [14] Web Based Student Content
Web Based Teacher Resources
Python,
JavaScript
Available online at No Cost
Creative Commons License
Summer PD:
Free live Instructor PD
Free online Instructor PD
Academic year:
Free online
CodeHS [15] Web Based Student Content

Web Based Teacher Resources

JavaScript Available online at No Cost

Copyright CodeHS

Free Online Teacher Support

Paid Online Teacher Professional Development

Assessment[edit]

Through-Course Assessment

  • Task 1: Explore – Implications of Computing Innovations[16]
    • Task Description: In the classroom, students explore the impacts of computing on social, economic, and cultural areas of our lives
    • Task Time Limit: 8 hours in Class Time
    • Task Response Format
      • Written Response: Innovation : 400 word Max
      • Written Response: Population and Impact : 300 Word Max
      • Visual Artifact : Visualization or Graphic
      • Visual Artifact Summary: 50 Words
      • Evaluate, Archive and Present Task
  • Task 2- Create – Applications from Ideas[17]
    • Task Description: Students create computational artifacts through the design and development of programs.
    • Task Time Limit: 12 hours in Class Time
    • Task Response Format
      • Individual Program: Source Code PDF and Video
      • Individual Reflection : 300 words
      • Evaluate, Archive and Present Task

End-of-Course AP Exam [2]

  • The exam uses paper and pencil.
  • It lasts 120 minutes and includes approximately 74 questions.
  • The exam is composed of two sections:
    • Single Select Multiple-Choice: Select 1 answer from among 4 options.
    • Multiple Select Multiple-Choice: you select 2 answers from among 4 options
Score 2017[18] 2018[19]
5 14% 14.4%
4 21.6% 21.6%
3 39% 36.7%
2 18.5% 19.7%
1 6.9% 7.6%
% of 3 or Higher 74.6% 72.7%
Mean 3.17 N/A
Number of Students 44,330

References[edit]

  1. ^ AP Computer Science Principles Home Page, The College Board
  2. ^ a b AP Computer Science Principles About The Exam Page, The College Board
  3. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles: Curriculum Framework 2016-2017" (PDF). College Board. Fall 2010. pp. 2–3. Retrieved 2016-02-22. 
  4. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles: Curriculum Framework 2016-2017" (PDF). College Board. Fall 2010. pp. 4–5. Retrieved 2016-02-22. 
  5. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles: Curriculum Framework 2016-2017" (PDF). College Board. Fall 2010. pp. 4–5. Retrieved 2016-02-22. 
  6. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles | CodeCombat". CodeCombat. Retrieved 2018-05-16. 
  7. ^ "BJC - Beauty and Joy of Computing". BJC - Beauty and Joy of Computing. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  8. ^ "Mobile CS". Mobile CSP. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  9. ^ "UTeach CS Principles". UTeach CS Principles. Retrieved 8 November 2017. 
  10. ^ "PLTW CSP". Project Lead The Way. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  11. ^ "Code.org CSP". Code.org. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  12. ^ "CS50 AP". CS50 AP. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  13. ^ "CS Matters Curriculum Overview". csmatters.org. Retrieved 2016-11-10. 
  14. ^ "EarSketch". EarSketch. Retrieved 4 December 2016. 
  15. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles | CodeHS". codehs.com. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  16. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles Draft Performance Tasks" (PDF). College Board. December 2013. pp. 6–7. Retrieved 2016-02-22. 
  17. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles Draft Performance Tasks" (PDF). College Board. December 2013. pp. 8–9. Retrieved 2016-02-22. 
  18. ^ "AP Computer Science Principles: The Exam | AP Central – The College Board". apcentral.collegeboard.org. Retrieved 2017-10-19. 
  19. ^ "2018 AP Exam Score Distributions". Total Registration. June 26, 2018. Retrieved August 11, 2018.