AP Computer Science Principles Course Abstract:
- Length: Two Semesters
- Prerequisites: Algebra II
- Grade level: 10-12
AP Computer Science Principles offers a multidisciplinary approach to teaching the underlying principles of computation. The course will introduce students to the creative aspects of programming, abstractions, algorithms, large data sets, the Internet, cybersecurity concerns, and computing impacts. The course will give students the opportunity to use technology to address real-world problems and build relevant solutions. Together, these aspects of the course make up a rigorous and rich curriculum that aims to broaden participation in computer science.
Computational Thinking Practices such as connecting computing, creating computational artifacts, abstracting, analyzing problems and artifacts, communicating and collaborating will be used to explore the following Big Ideas in Computer Science:
- Creativity: Computing facilitates exploration and the creation of computational artifacts and new knowledge that help people solve personal, societal, and global problems.
- Abstraction: Abstraction reduces information and detail to facilitate focus on relevant concepts. Multiple levels of abstraction are used in computation. Models and simulations use abstraction.
- Data and Information: Data and information facilitate the creation of knowledge which drives change across many disciplines – from art to business to science. People use computation to translate, process, and visualize raw data and to create information and knowledge.
- Algorithms: Algorithms are used to develop and express solutions to computational problems. The development, use and analysis of algorithms are some of the most fundamental aspects of computing. An algorithm is a precise sequence of instructions that is executable on a computer.
- Programming: Programming and software creation is a creative process that enables problem solving, human expression and creation of knowledge. It uses mathematical and logical concepts and is facilitated by abstractions. Programs are written to execute algorithms.
- Internet: The Internet and computer networks support communication and collaboration. The principles of systems and networks that helped enable the Internet are also critical in the implementation of computational solutions.
- Global Impact: Computation has changed the way people think, work, live and play. Our methods for communicating, collaborating, problem solving, and doing business have changed and are changing due to innovations enabled by computing. Many innovations in other fields are fostered by advances in computing.
- Students will require connections to the internet and access to a computing device. For example, students can develop the projects using free open-source platforms on Chromebooks.