AP Computer Science Principals

Big Ideas

  • Creativity
  • Abstraction
  • Data and Information
  • Algorithms
  • Programming
  • The Internet
  • Global Impact

Computational Thinking Practices

  • Connecting computing
  • Creating computational artifacts
  • Abstracting
  • Analyzing problems and artifacts
  • Communicating
  • Collaborating


Computer Science: The New Literacy

Whether it’s 3-D animation, engineering, music, app development, medicine, visual design, robotics, or political analysis, computer science is the engine that powers the technology, productivity, and innovation that drive the world. Computer science experience has become an imperative for today’s students and the workforce of tomorrow.

The AP Program designed AP Computer Science Principles with the goal of creating leaders in computer science fields and attracting and engaging those who are traditionally underrepresented with essential computing tools and multidisciplinary opportunities.


Rigorously Developed

In development since 2008, AP Computer Science Principles was created with significant support from the National Science Foundation. The College Board worked with more than 50 leading high school and higher education computer science educators who piloted the course at their institutions. This rigorous process of development and testing has yielded a course that not only reflects the latest scholarship in the field, but provides students with a relevant and engaging learning experience.

Over 90 colleges and universities have stated their support for the course, with the majority anticipating they will award college credit for high exam scores.



AP Computer Science Principals


Code.org- AP Computer Science Principals Syllabus

Mr. Burrill's Course Syllabus

---Class Links---

Code Studio - App Lab - Blown to Bits - Nimbus Screencast

Post AP Test


How a CPU is Made Video

Transistors - The Invention That Changed The World Video



Intel v. AMD
These are the two main processor producers on the market and they fill two different niches. AMD processors tend to be on the less expensive side, however they are best used in budget computers where price matters more than stellar performance.
Clock Speed and Number of Cores

Clock speed is pretty simple to understand - it’s how many calculations a processor can crunch in a single second. This is generally measured in gigahertz, abbreviated GHz. For example, if a processor says 3GHz, that means it can perform 3 billion calculations per second.
Cores on the other hand are how many individual processors are combined onto one board. So if a processor says it has 4 cores, then that means that there are 4 processors combined onto one processor. Having multiple cores on a computer will allow multiple tasks to be carried out at once more efficiently.


Computer Parts

  • Case
  • Drive Bays
  • RAM
  • Hard Drive
  • Motherboard
  • Processor/CPU/Chip
  • Input Devices
  • Output Devices
  • Fan
  • Operating System
  • Graphics Card
  • Sound Card
  • NIC Card