The AP Program has developed college-level courses that high schools can choose to offer, as well as corresponding exams that are given once a year. Advanced Placement (AP) courses are intended to serve as a launchpad for a STEM major. The first thing to keep in mind is your interest and aptitude in any field. The availability of an AP course in your school is another important factor to consider when choosing an AP course. Not every AP course for a STEM major is available at every school. There are, however, a few courses that are relevant to any STEM major specialization. Every field of science, engineering, and technology, for example, employs some aspect of mathematics, physics, and computer science.
Best AP courses
These can be useful in almost any field where you can pursue a STEM degree.:
AP Calculus AB – This course is for you if you are good at algebra and trigonometry. AP Calculus AB teaches you how to solve problems. Differential calculus, integral calculus, and derivatives are all covered in this course. This course will help you prepare for a career in mechanical engineering.
AP Calculus BC- This course is a step up from AP Calculus AB. As a result, it is more difficult than AB. This course will assist you in preparing for fields such as Aerospace Engineering, which can lead to careers as an avionics or aircraft technician.
AP Physics – This is a subject that is required in any engineering field. For this course, you must have previously studied algebra and trigonometry. And it’s even better if you have a basic understanding of physics. This course is beneficial if you are considering pursuing a career in this field.
AP Computer Science A – Without a basic understanding of computers, any field of work today would be incomplete. This course uses a Java application to cover the fundamentals of computer science. This course will teach you Java coding and debugging.
AP Computer Science Principles – This is another course that will teach you the fundamentals of computer science. As you might expect, this course is beneficial if you are considering a career in science.
AP Computer Science A – Without a basic understanding of computers, any field of work today would be incomplete. This course uses a Java application to cover the fundamentals of computer science. This course will prepare you for a career in information technology or computer management.
AP Computer Science Principles – This is another course that will teach you the fundamentals of computer science. It won’t teach you any languages or programming, but it will give you an idea of what you can do with them.
AP Chemistry will improve your ability to reason logically. This course will assist you in pursuing a degree in chemistry, environmental studies, food sciences, astronomy, and other related fields.
Environmental Science AP Exam – This is not a difficult class, and you are not required to have any prior knowledge before enrolling. In AP Environmental Sciences, you will learn about how nature works.
- Taking AP courses and exams can benefit students in the following ways:
- Make your college application stand out. Success on an AP Exam demonstrates that they are prepared for college-level coursework.
- Students can benefit from taking AP classes and exams by developing their skills and confidence.
- AP students learn important time management and study skills that will help them succeed in college and their careers.
Who Can Teach Advanced Placement?
Except for AP Seminar and AP Research teachers, who must complete a summer workshop and online training, there are no formal requirements or mandatory professional development for teachers of AP courses.
Even if it is not required for your course, we strongly advise AP teachers to participate in professional development in their subject area. The AP Exams are given once a year in May, according to a set schedule. Schools may administer exams without offering AP courses; alternatively, schools may offer AP courses only and send their students to tests elsewhere.
How can schools launch the AP program?
You are simply required to register your school with the College Board so that you can order and administer exams.
- Obtain the College Board School Code
To participate in AP and other College Board programs, your school must have a College Board school code. This is a six-digit code that uniquely identifies your school in our system. It is available in two sizes. It is available in two levels of authorization:
Level 1 authorization is required for schools to offer AP courses and receive AP Exam and other College Board test results for their students. AP and other College Board exams cannot be given in schools.
Level 2 authorization is required for schools to receive scores, administer AP Exams, and administer PSAT-related assessments, as well as apply to become an SAT Test Center. You already have a school code if your school offers AP, the PSAT/NMSQT, or the SAT. Look up your code using the high school code search.
- Determine who will be the AP Coordinator.
Your school’s AP coordinator is in charge of organizing and administering the AP program.
The AP coordinator could be a full-time or part-time administrator, counselor, faculty member, or other members of the school staff. An AP coordinator is not permitted to handle any exam materials that a member of one’s immediate family or household may take.
- Go to AP Registration and Ordering and fill out the Participation Form for AP.
Principals and coordinators receive a unique code for their school in August to verify access to AP Registration and Ordering. When AP coordinators first log in, they will be directed to the AP Registration and Ordering Setup page. The coordinator must enter information about their school and select exam administration settings here. After the coordinator completes the setup, they’ll be notified when their AP Participation Form is ready to review, sign, and submit electronically.
HOW TO OFFER AP COURSES IN YOUR SCHOOL
Here’s what you’ll need to do if you want to offer AP classes at your school.
1. Decide which AP courses you want to take.
Make sure you’re familiar with all 38 AP courses. Check for prerequisites—a few courses require prerequisite coursework, which your school should be able to provide. Examine each AP course’s curriculum and resource requirements.
2. Double-check that you have a College Board School Code.
To participate in AP and other College Board programs, your school must have a College Board school code.
You already have a school code if your school offers the PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, PSAT 8/9, or SAT. Look up your code using the high school code search. A school code is one-of-a-kind to your school and never expires.
3. Assign Roles to Employees
For your school, you’ll need to find an AP Course Audit administrator. This person will oversee the AP Course Audit process, which will result in your courses being approved. In addition, you’ll need to find an AP coordinator for your school. If your school offers AP Exams, this person will complete tasks such as creating classes in My AP and overseeing exam administration.
4. Prepare your teachers
Before beginning to teach AP, prepare teachers by enrolling them in a professional development opportunity. Both new and experienced teachers can benefit from the College Board’s free and paid in-person and online resources.
Encourage your teachers to familiarize themselves with the AP Classroom instructional resources. Once their course has been authorized through AP Course Audit, they will be able to access AP Classroom.
5. Complete the AP Course Audit
Every school that wants to label a course as “AP” has to go through the Course Audit process. This is a procedure that allows the College Board to provide AP teachers and students with additional resources.
This is a method by which the College Board provides clear curricular and resource requirements for each AP course to AP teachers and administrators. The Course Audit also assures colleges and universities that “AP” courses on students’ transcripts are designed to meet the same college-level criteria across high schools.