The program consists of two courses taken in sequence: AP Seminar and AP Research.
Students who score a 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research, as well as four additional AP Exams of their choosing, earn the AP Capstone Diploma.
This signifies outstanding academic achievement and attainment of college-level academic and research skills. Students who score a 3 or higher in both AP Seminar and AP Research (but not on four additional AP Exams) earn the AP Seminar and Research Certificate.
“This innovative program gets a broader, more diverse student population ready for college and beyond,” said Cherokee Principal David Kenner. “The program gives our teachers more leeway with curriculum choices, so their students can access more challenging coursework and sharpen their reading and writing skills.”
In AP Seminar, typically taken in 10th or 11th grade, students choose and evaluate complex topics through multiple lenses; identify credibility and bias in sources; and develop arguments in support of a recommendation. AP Seminar is a project-based learning course.
Official AP Seminar assessments include research reports, written arguments, and presentations completed during the academic year. Students take an end-of-course written exam in May.
In the subsequent AP Research course, students design, execute, present, and defend a yearlong, research-based investigation on a topic of individual interest.
They build on skills developed in AP Seminar by learning how to understand research methodology; employ ethical research practices; and collect, analyze, and synthesize information to contribute to academic research.
Like AP Seminar, AP Research is a project-based course. Each student’s official AP Research score is based on their academic paper, presentation, and oral defense. There is no end-of-course exam for AP Research.