AP Computer Science Principles introduces you to the foundations of computer science with a focus on how computing powers the world. Along with the fundamentals of computing, the student will learn to analyze data, create technology that has a practical impact, and gain a broader understanding of how computer science impacts people and society. The AP CSP course is organized around seven big ideas, which are essential to studying computer science: Creativity, Abstraction, Data and Information, Algorithms, Programming, The Internet, Global Impact.
Key Course Learning ExperiencesConnecting Computing
Creating Computational Artifacts
- Identify the impacts of computing and explain connections between computing concepts.
- Design and develop computational artifacts and apply computing techniques to creatively solve problems.
Analyzing Problems and Artifacts
- Identify abstractions and use them to develop models and simulations of natural and artificial phenomena. Explain how abstractions are used and help to manage complexity.
- Design and produce solutions, models, and artifacts and evaluate and analyze computational work.
- Describe computation and the impact of technology and computation, explain and justify the design and appropriateness of computational choices, and analyze and describe both computational artifacts and the results or behaviors of such artifacts.
- Collaborate effectively with other students on the creation and analysis of computational artifacts to address complex and open-ended problems.
Essential Learning GoalsThe Internet (10%)
- Students will examine the challenges and questions that arise when representing information in a computer or sending it from one computer to another and learn how the design of the internet allows information to be shared across billions of people and devices.Programming (50%)
Digital Information (10%)
- Students will demonstrate sound techniques for designing, writing, and testing well-structured programs. Implement basic programming logic including declaring variables, arithmetic, decisions, and loops.
Big Data and Privacy (10%)
- Students will understand the way large and complex pieces of digital information are stored in computers and the associated challenges.
Impacts of Computing (20%)
- Students will investigate the technical, legal, and ethical questions that arise from computers enabling the collection and analysis of enormous amounts of data.
- Students will conduct investigations of computing innovations and gain insight into how computing enhances human cognition, communication, and interaction, and analyze the beneficial and harmful effects of computing in different scenarios.
Major Assessments and Success Criteria
The AP assessment comprises two parts: performance tasks and the end-of-course AP Exam. The AP Computer Science Principles Exam will be a multiple-choice, paper and pencil exam. The two performance tasks require students to examine the impacts of computing and create computational artifacts through programming.