Ask your counselor about taking AP CSP at your school

Computer science is everywhere, from our smartphones and video games to music, medicine, and much more. Launching in fall 2016, 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.

Getting Real

There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about what computer science is and isn’t. Let’s set the record straight:

  • Computer science isn’t posting pictures, sending email or searching the Internet. You can use it to pursue your interests, showcase your creativity, and even make a difference in your community.
  • It’s not about sitting in front of a computer alone, typing code all day (and night). It is about using one elaborate tool to solve real-world problems.
  • Teamwork is often essential to finding those solutions, and each team member’s contributions are valuable to the end goal.
  • You don’t have to be a math whiz to understand computer science.
  • Studying computer science doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be a programmer. It can lead to hundreds of career choices, from engineering and animation to medicine and music.

If you have big ideas and an interest in using technology and creativity to realize those ideas and solve problems, computer science is for you.

AP Computer Science A and AP Computer Science Principles

AP Computer Science A isn’t going anywhere. But starting in fall 2016, you’ll have the option to take either one or both AP computer science courses. Check out the differences below.

 

Computer Science A

Computer Science Principles

What it's about

The fundamentals of programming and problem solving using the JAVA language. The fundamentals of computing, including problem solving, working with data, understanding the Internet, cybersecurity, and programming.

Goals

Developing skills for future study or a career in computer science or other STEM fields. Broadening your understanding of computer science for use in a diversity of majors and careers.

The Exam

  • One end-of-year exam: multiple choice and free response.
  • Two projects during the course.
  • One end-of-year exam: multiple choice.

Create the future with AP Computer Science Principles

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Kaila on AP CSP

Built a travel app to plan for weather

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Hamed on AP CSP

Created his own music without an instrument

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Lily on AP CSP

Taught children the ABCs with her own app