Advanced Placement Courses

Description
Advanced Placement® (AP) courses provide a unique learning experience that promotes college readiness. AP courses are college-level courses and exams provided in high schools for which students can earn college credit and advanced placement in college course sequencing, helping them to stand out in the admissions process. AP course descriptions and exams are developed by the College Board and are available in over 30 subjects including art, computer science, history and social sciences, mathematics, sciences, English language and literature, and world languages.

For schools to offer an authorized AP course, the teacher of the course must submit a syllabus for approval through AP Course Audit and the school must designate an AP Coordinator who will be responsible for organizing and administering that school’s AP program, exams, and materials. If a school does not have the resources to offer an AP course, students may also enroll in AP courses through Florida Virtual School or Palm Beach Virtual School.

In addition to individual AP courses, there is an AP Capstone Diploma program. AP Capstone is an innovative diploma program that provides students with an opportunity to engage in a rigorous scholarly practice of the core academic skills necessary for successful college completion.

AP Capstone is built on the foundation of two courses — AP Seminar and AP Research — and is designed to complement and enhance the in-depth, discipline-specific study provided through four other AP courses of the student’s choice. It cultivates curious, independent, and collaborative scholars and prepares them to make logical evidence-based decisions.

The College Board also offers AP Innovation courses which partner industry certifications with specific AP subject areas. AP Innovation embeds the practice of related software skills into the curriculum of an AP course. Participating students will take both the course-related AP exam and a certification exam in the related digital tool. The following pairings are currently offered.

  • AP Microeconomics with Microsoft Excel
  • AP English Language & Composition with Microsoft Word
  • AP Computer Science with Javascript
  • AP Studio Art: 2D Design with Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud

Benefits
Advanced Placement coursework is challenging, however, any student who is motivated and interested may take an AP course. As a District policy, students who register and take an AP course must also take the AP exam to successfully complete the course. The AP exams are developed and scored by college and university faculty members as well as experienced AP teachers. Advanced Placement is accepted by most two-and four-year colleges and universities worldwide for college credit, advanced placement or both, based on successful exam scores of 3 and above.

Weighting
Palm Beach County weights for AP, AICE, DE, and IB courses are as follows:

  • A = 6.0
  • B = 4.5
  • C = 3.0
  • D = 1.5

Please note that this weighting is used to calculate HPA (Honors Point Average), but that not all colleges and universities keep this weighting when calculating GPA (Grade Point Average) for admissions determinations.

Schools that offer Advanced Placement courses
All-District high schools offer at least one AP course – which courses and how many are offered vary by school, based on student interest, as well as teacher expertise and resource availability.

Links to information on college acceptance of AP scores:
Each university determines its own awarding of college credits based on their own policies (see AP Credit Policy Search); however, all public state universities in Florida adhere to the statewide articulation agreement. District AP score results can be found annually on the District Research & Evaluation website.

Contact Information:
Becky Youngman, Manager, College Readiness
Phone: 561-432-6344
Fax: 561-434-8073
becky.youngman@palmbeachschools.org

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