Advanced Placement Courses
Denham Springs High School
AP Course Descriptions
** All AP courses listed below are possible course offerings for the 2019-2020 school year. Courses are subject to change.
SOPHOMORE LEVEL OR HIGHER:
AP Art History- Grades 10-12
The AP Art History course is equivalent to a two-semester introductory college course that explores the nature of art, art making, and responses to art. By investigating specific course content works of art characterized by diverse artistic traditions from prehistory to the present, the course fosters in-depth, holistic understanding of the history of art from a global perspective. Students become active participants in the global art world, engaging with its forms and content. They experience, research, discuss, read, and write about art, artists, art making, responses to, and interpretations of art.
AP Computer Science Principles- Grades 9-12
Computer science is everywhere, from our smartphones and video games to music, medicine, and much more. AP Computer Science Principles (AP CSP) can help you understand how computing and technology influence the world around you. Learn how to creatively address real-world issues while using the same tools and processes that artists, writers, computer scientists, and engineers use to bring ideas to life. Learn the fundamentals of computing, including problem solving, working with data, understanding the Internet, cybersecurity, and programming.
Prerequisite is Algebra I.
AP Computer Science A- Grades 10-12
Computer Science A is equivalent to a first-semester, college-level course in computer science. The course introduces students to computer science with fundamental topics that include problem solving, design strategies and methodologies, organization of data (data structures), approaches to processing data (algorithms), analysis of potential solutions, and the ethical and social implications of computing. The course emphasizes both object-oriented and imperative problem solving and design using Java language. These techniques represent proven approaches for developing solutions that can scale up from small, simple problems to large, complex problems. Prerequisite is to have taken Computer Science Principles or be currently enrolled in Algebra II or higher.
AP Environmental Science- Grades 10-12
AP Environmental Science is interdisciplinary, embracing topics from geology, biology, environmental studies, environmental science, chemistry, and geography. Students will receive a hands on analysis of tissue, water, sediment, soil, and air. Students will gain an understanding of populations distributions along with human impacts to the environment. Prerequisites are Physical Science and Algebra I.
AP Human Geography- In Lieu of World Geography- Grades 10-12
The AP Human Geography course is equivalent to an introductory college-level course in human geography. The course introduces students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of Earth's surface. Students employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine socioeconomic organization and its environmental consequences. They also learn about the methods and tools geographers use in their research and applications.
AP Music Theory –Grades 10-12
The AP Music Theory course corresponds to one or two semesters of a typical introductory college music theory course that covers topics such as musicianship, theory, musical materials, and procedures. Musicianship skills, including dictation and other listening skills, sight singing, and harmony, are considered an important part of the course. Through the course, students develop the ability to recognize, understand, and describe basic materials and processes of tonal music that are heard or presented in a score. Development of aural skills is a primary objective. Performance is also part of the curriculum through the practice of sight singing. Students understand basic concepts and terminology by listening to and performing a wide variety of music. Notational skills, speed, and fluency with basic materials are also emphasized.
Prerequisite--Students must be able to read and write basic musical notation, demonstrate basic performance skills on an instrument or voice, and have completed at least one year of high school band or choir.
AP Seminar- Grades 10-12
In AP Seminar, students investigate real-world issues from multiple perspectives, gathering and analyzing information from various sources in order to develop credible and valid evidence-based arguments. AP Seminar is a foundational course that engages students in cross-curricular conversations that explore the complexities of academic and real-world topics and issues by analyzing divergent perspectives. Ultimately, the course aims to equip students with the power to analyze and
evaluate information with accuracy and precision in order to craft and communicate evidence-based arguments.
AP US Government and Politics – In Lieu of Civics- Grades 10-12
AP U.S. Government and Politics provides a college-level, nonpartisan introduction to key political concepts, ideas, institutions, policies, interactions, roles, and behaviors that characterize the constitutional system and political culture of the United States.
Students will study U.S. foundational documents, Supreme Court decisions, and other texts and visuals to gain an understanding of the relationships and interactions among political institutions, processes, and behaviors. They will also engage in disciplinary practices that require them to read and interpret data, make comparisons and applications, and develop evidence-based arguments.
AP English Language – Replaces English III
Strengthen the effectiveness of writing through close reading and frequent practice at applying rhetorical strategies, analyzing information from source texts, and writing arguments; become a critical reader of predominantly nonfiction works, including expository, argumentative, analytical, and personal texts from various authors and time periods; learn about the elements that define effective argument and composition through the critical analysis and interpretation of complex texts; understand the interactions among a writer’s purpose, audience, subject, and genre and how each of these contributes to effective writing; enhance your own writing skills and understand better each stage of the writing process as you develop expository, analytical, and argumentative compositions. If the student was enrolled in an On-Level English I and/or II course, he or she must have earned As for both semesters. If the student was enrolled in an Honors English I and/or II course, he or she must have earned As and/or Bs for both semesters.
AP US History – Grade 11
This course is a comprehensive look at political, cultural, social, economic, and diplomatic events that shaped our nation from the 14th century through the present. Events are explored through the use and analysis of documents, images, cartoons, quantitative data, and other primary sources. Students develop an understanding of major themes in U.S. history, including American identity, economic and social life, political change and continuity. Students learn to weigh evidence and develop personal interpretations while building a repository of factual knowledge regarding U.S. history. There is a heavy emphasis on developing strong reading and writing skills. A great deal of emphasis is placed on the ability to draw conclusions and use informed reasoning to present arguments clearly and persuasively in essay format.
JUNIOR OR SENIOR LEVEL:
AP Biology – Grade 11-12
Learn to think like a scientist, and become an independent investigator through student-directed laboratory investigations: pose the questions and determine the variables you want to investigate; design experiments and procedures; determine how best to present conclusions; learn about the core scientific principles, theories, and processes governing living organisms, biological systems, and natural phenomena; understand key science practices to develop explanations and predictions of natural phenomena, which will be tested and refined through laboratory investigations; develop advanced reasoning and inquiry skills as to design experiments, collect and analyze data using mathematics and other methods, and interpret that data to draw conclusions. Students must have completed Biology I and Chemistry I and received at least a B average in both. There is also a mandatory summer assignment and a $15 mandatory lab fee. College credit for introductory science major Biology may be earned on the AP test.
AP Chemistry – Grade 11-12
Work in groups to think analytically about problems, identify experimental questions, and design experiments to answer those questions; engage in hands-on laboratory investigation to learn chemical concepts through direct experience and observations; learn about the fundamental concepts of chemistry such as structure and states of matter, intermolecular forces, reactions, and how to use chemical calculations to solve problems; develop the ability to think clearly and express ideas with clarity and logic, both orally and in writing. Work with classmates to conduct meaningful laboratory investigations in order to observe chemical reactions and substances, interpret findings, and communicate results. Chemistry I (H) pre-requisite preferred, but teacher recommendation can substitute. If the student was enrolled in an On-Level Chemistry I course, he or she must have earned As for both semesters. If the student was enrolled in Chemistry I (H) course, he or she must have earned As and/or Bs for both semesters. College credit for introductory science major Chemistry may be earned on the AP test.
AP Physics- Grades 11-12
AP Physics 1 is an algebra-based, introductory college-level physics course. Students cultivate their understanding of Physics through inquiry-based investigations as they explore topics such as Newtonian mechanics (including rotational motion); work, energy, and power; mechanical waves and sound; and introductory, simple circuits.
AP Statistics – Grades 11-12
The purpose of the AP course in statistics is to introduce students to the major concepts and tools for collecting, analyzing and drawing conclusions from data. Students are exposed to four broad conceptual themes:
Exploring Data: Describing patterns and departures from patterns, Sampling and Experimentation: Planning and conducting a study, Anticipating Patterns: Exploring random phenomena using probability and simulation, and Statistical Inference: Estimating population parameters and testing hypotheses. Prerequisites: Student should have complete at least Algebra II with a grade of B or higher for both semesters. College credit for introductory College Statistics may be earned on the AP test.
AP Studio Art – Grades 11-12
Be an informed and critical decision-maker in order to develop a portfolio that is personal to your individual artistic talents and interests, while demonstrating mastery of Drawing or 2-D design principles; explore your creativity and become an independent thinker in your contributions to art and culture; learn to use Elements and Design Principles to organize an image on a picture plane in order to communicate content; demonstrate mastery through any two-dimensional medium or process, such as graphic design, digital imaging, photography, collage, fabric design, weaving, fashion design, fashion illustration, drawing, painting and printmaking; develop technical skills and familiarity with the functions of visual elements in order to create an individual portfolio of work for evaluation at the end of the course. Prerequisite- Students must have taken Art I.
AP Calculus – Grade 12 Learn problem solving methods that you apply across real-world problems involving theorems, definitions, and functions represented in different ways; use technology to explore, experiment, interpret results, and support your conclusions; explore the key concepts, methods, and applications of single-variable calculus including functions, graphs, and limits, derivatives, integrals, and the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus; become familiar with concepts, results, and problems expressed in multiple ways including graphically, numerically, analytically, and verbally; use technology to help solve problems, experiment, interpret results, and support your conclusions
AP English Literature – Replaces English IV
AP English Literature and Composition engages students in the careful reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature. Through the close reading of selected texts, students deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide meaning for their readers. As they read, students consider a work’s structure, style and themes, as well as such smaller-scale elements as the use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism and tone. Writing assignments focus on the critical analysis of literature and include expository, analytical and argumentative essays. Writing to evaluate a literary work involves making and explaining judgments about its artistry and exploring its underlying social and cultural values through analysis, interpretation and argument. English III AP pre-requisite preferred, but teacher recommendation can substitute. College credit for freshman English may be earned on the AP test. Students must have semester grades no lower than a B in all previous English courses.
AP Macroeconomics – Grade 12 (can be used as a 4th History)
The goal of the AP Macroeconomics course is to give students a thorough understanding of the principles that apply to an economic system as a whole. Emphasis will be placed on the study of national income, the financial sector, economic performance measures, and international economics. The course is designed to prepare students to take the AP Macroeconomics Exam in May. Additionally, the rigorous workload and pace of the course will help prepare students for college level study.
AP Psychology – Grade12
Explore how psychologists use research methods and critical analysis to explore human behavior; discuss how biological, cognitive, and cultural factors converge to facilitate acquisition, development, and use of language; explore the concepts, theories, perspectives, phenomena and behaviors associated with the subfields and research areas of psychology; analyze the methods psychologists use to study various types of behavior and mental processes and evaluate the validity and significance of their contributions. There are no pre-requisite courses, although advanced writing skills are helpful.
AP World History – Grade 12
Investigate the content of world history through significant events, individuals, developments, and processes in six historical periods from approximately 8000 BCE to the present, and develop and use the same thinking skills and methods (analyzing primary and secondary sources, making historical comparisons, chronological reasoning, and argumentation) employed by historians when they study the past. The course also provides five themes (interaction between humans and the environment; development and interaction of cultures; state building, expansion, and conflict; creation, expansion, and interaction of economic systems; development and transformation of social structures) that students explore throughout the course in order to make connections among historical developments in different times and places encompassing the five major geographical regions of the globe: Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. Prerequisite – Students must have completed American History/APUSH and received at least a B average.