Learning Recommendations: Students should be prepared for a reading load and writing assignments at a collegiate level.
General Description: This is a year-long course designed to cover American history from the Colonial Era through 2000 in conjunction with the student's American Literature class. The Advanced Placement program in American History is designed to provide students with the analytic skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the problems and materials in American history. The program prepares students for intermediate and advanced college courses by making demands upon them equivalent to those made by full-year introductory college courses. Students should learn to assess historical materials--their relevance to a given interpretive problem, their reliability, and their importance--and to weigh the evidence and interpretations presented in historical scholarship.
Content: The course uses primary and secondary documents and the history text to develop critical thinking, note taking and written and oral language skills. Units of study will encompass 1491 to the present day, divided into 9 units of study.
Strategies: The basic approaches to this study will include lecture-discussions on assigned readings, formal lectures, seminars on historical themes, reading quizzes, and unit examinations.
Students may also learn through a combination of: multi-media presentations; visual document analysis using graphs, charts, written documents, political cartoons and photographs; cooperative group projects; identifying bias; and non-fiction text reading and outlining.
Homework: In order to offer a rigorous AP course, outside reading and reflection is required. Reading in the textbook, as well as primary and secondary documents, constitutes the majority of the homework. Students should expect 1 hour of work per evening. This prepares them for class, for the AP exam, and for the expectations of a college social studies course.
AP courses at IHS challenge students with rigorous college-level work. By succeeding in college-level work while still in high school, students in AP courses develop confidence in their own abilities and learn essential time management and study skills needed for college and career success.
AP courses provide the opportunity for students to earn college credits. In order to earn college credit, students must register for the AP exam for this course. AP exam fees vary each year. Scholarships are available for students who qualify. AP exam registration takes place December through March. College credit can be earned with a passing score on the AP exam, but what the score qualification and amount of credit earned varies by college.