How can I prepare students for the exam?

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Teachers need to review the AP Computer Science Principles Course and Exam Description (.pdf/2.05 MB) carefully to understand the course framework as well as the exam design. It is important to provide opportunities throughout the year for students to practice the learning objectives and skills within the course framework. Teachers can access formative and summative assessment items in AP Classroom.

The formative topic questions provide feedback to students on areas where they need to focus and are designed to meet students where they are in the material. Topic questions are best used for spot-checking student understanding while teaching the topics identified in the course framework. They can be used in class or as homework based on teacher preference. The questions can reveal misunderstandings and help teachers target content and skills to emphasize in lessons; they can also help students understand why an answer is correct or incorrect. Because the topic questions are formative, the results of these assessments cannot be used to evaluate teacher effectiveness or assign letter grades to students, and any such misuses are grounds for losing school authorization to offer AP courses.

To prepare students for the Create performance task, teachers must ensure that students have sufficient learning experiences and practice on the concepts tested in the tasks prior to administering them. Samples of the performance task with student responses and commentary are available on the AP CSP Exam page.

Online resources like curriculum samples, programming tools, and online courses can supplement AP CSP instruction. These resources have not been reviewed or endorsed by the College Board. Teachers can visit the AP CSP Classroom Resources page and join the AP CSP Teacher Community to access resources.