- A parent or guardian for each
student is asked to send Mr. Rogers an e-mail as follows:
- Subject: AP Computer Science
<your student's name>
- Please indicate your name inside the
e-mail body. Mr. Rogers will use this for
communicating information during the year.
Click here for abbreviated syllabus on the official school letterhead.
Why is computer science significant?
The invention of the printing press created a powerful new social group: those who could read, write, and potentially publish. It confined the rest of humanity to dependency. Likewise the invention of the modern computer is slowly producing a similar effect. *
What is the course like?
AP Computer Science is a a college level
course that teaches students how to progam in the Java language, analogus to writing and publishing in the previous era of the printing press. The course cannot create the equivalent of novalists but is an importat step toward mastering computer science.
At the course's end, students will be required to take the AP Computer Science A
test. If they pass they may receive college credit for one semester of
At Southside, you will typically take AP
Computer Science before your senior year. Hence, your AP score can also be a significant factor in scholarships
and college entrance. For more information contact the
American College Board.
By any measure Java is one of the top computer language in the world. A person
knowledgeable in java can generally pick up other top rated languages such as
C or C++ without too much difficulty.
science and the related area information technology (IT) form the single
largest job market with one
of the highest pay rates of the science, technology, engineering, and
math (STEM) disciplines While a student may never work as a computer professional, he or she is very likely to work with one. Previous exposure to Java would be helpul..
The Intellectual Challenge
In college, computer science is generally considered an intellectually challenging course. Correlations between the combined PSAT math and verbal scores with the passing rate in AP Computer Science bears this out. However, AP Computer Sciencehas an advantage over the equivalent college course in that it takes an entire year to present what would be considered a semester of material in college.
- AP Standards:
Topic Outline: This link give the official AP computer science
Java Subset: The Java language is huge and so AP computer science
will focus on a limited but very powerful part of the subset.
Case Study: A case study is included in the requirements.
Students will use it to learn how to read and modify the code in a major
Computer Lab: Our computer lab
contains up-to-date computers as well as a promethean board for displaying information to the
entire class. All classes (5 days a week) will be held in the lab.
Computer Lab Hours: The lab
or computers in room 134 will normally be
open for an hour after school every day except
Resources and Materials for Class
TextBooks : Mr. Rogers will provide the
Methods A & AB
- Object-Oriented Programming and Data
Structures AP Edition, Maria Litvin,
Gary Litvin, 2006, by Skylight Publishing,
- ISBN 978-0-9727055-7-8
Be Prepared for the AP
Computer Science Exam in Java (Paperback)
by Maria Litvin
- Web Page Resources
- All of the following are maintained by
Mr. Rogers and
can be reached via links from his teacher homepage.
Provided by Mr. Rogers: The daily
objectives used in class along with programming and homework assignments are all
Textbook Page: this
page has lots of Java information including student files which you will want
Programming Interfaces (API) this is a primary source for
information about the Java language.
Java Subset: AP Computer Science uses a limited subset of the
Java language. At the beginning of the year the subset will have little
meaning, however, students should review it in detail when making final
preparations for the AP Exam.
- Solutions to the AP Free response problems.
- Google: googling just about any
Java topic will bring up tutorials or other useful information. Java is
a great language for online resources.
Materials for Class
- A USB thumb drive for backing up programs.
Note: you are responsible to keep a backup copy of your program. Do not
assume it will remain on the hard drive of your computer.
- 3 x 5 Cards. These are for making
flash cards with vocabulary terms, code snippets and other useful
information to use in studying for tests and the AP exam.
- Students are not required to have a computer with an
internet connection at home however, it is recommended. There are many
computer science resources available on the internet.
Students can download a freeware version
of BlueJ (here) to
use at home. This is the same software used for programming in class.
All students should purchase the
Barron's Ap Computer Science Study Guide*
- How to Prepare for the AP Computer Science Exam
by Roselyn Teukolsky.
Sources of Help:
Student tutors will typically be available at lunch time and at selected times
(For details see
Mr. Rogers' Syllabus -
Information Common to All
Classes.) Tests will be the single largest item and be written
as close to AP exam standards as possible. All tests will be pencil
and paper just like the AP Test.
Course work will generally
be finished in the third quarter leaving the rest of the year for review and
completion of the major project (see below). The first semester exam will be taken
from AP test type materials. The exam grade will give you an indication of your
standing on the future AP exam in enough time to take corrective action if
The fourth quarter grade will consist primarily of practice AP test
grades and the major project. Generally, there is a high correlation between the practice exams and
your grade on the AP test.
It will be nearly impossible to get an "A" in the 4th quarter and not pass the
Regular Programming Assignments: every
new unit will have moderate sized programming assignments which are due before
the unit test. These assignments are listed in the on-line syllabus. Time will
be allotted in class to work on these programs but it will normally also
require at least some work outside of class.
Homework Assignments: these are listed
in the on-line syllabus and are to be written out and stapled to the back of
the unit test when it is turned in. No late homework will be accepted.
Class Work: We will frequently have
brief programming assignments in class to illustrate a specific objective.
These will normally be due no later than the next class session.
Personal Software Project:
starting in with milestones in December and ending in May, each student will be required to
design and create a Personal Software Project which answers
a research question or meets a defined purpose such as a game or educational program. Click
here for a detailed description of the project.
Be aware that the project will seriously impact both
the 3rd and 4th quarters. It will be nearly impossible to get an "A" for the
year without completing the project.
The AP Exam:
The Exam will be given on
Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at 8:00 am.
You must arrive 30 minutes early. The exam lasts 3 hours and Consists
of two parts: 1 hr. 15 min. for 40 multiple choice questions and 1 hr. 45 min.
for four free response. The test is entirely pencil and paper. In other words,
no computers are available.
AP tests are graded on a scale of 1 to 5 with 3
considered passing. The test is difficult but is doable if you have
learned how to program.
To prepare for the test Students should begin
working practice tests in an AP test study book such as
Barron's Ap Computer Science Study Guide**
no later than December. However, there's no substitute for knowing how to