CS Principles

What is CS Principles?

In fall 2016, the College Board launched its newest AP® course, AP Computer Science Principles. The course introduces students to the foundational concepts of computer science and challenges them to explore how computing and technology can impact the world. 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.

For more information, visit http://collegeboard.org/APCSP.

Code.org's AP CS Principles Curriculum

Code.org AP CSP Endorsed Badge" Code.org is recognized by the College Board as an endorsed provider of curriculum and professional development for AP® Computer Science Principles. This endorsement affirms that all components of Code.org CS Principles’s offerings are aligned to the AP Curriculum Framework standards and the AP CS Principles assessment. Using an endorsed provider affords schools access to resources including an AP CS Principles syllabus pre-approved by the College Board’s AP Course Audit, and officially recognized professional development that prepares teachers to teach AP CS Principles. Our curriculum is available at no cost for anyone, anywhere to teach.


Curriculum Resources and Features

Unit Overview

The Internet

What can be represented with a single bit and how do we get a single bit of information from one place to another? This unit explores the technical challenges and questions that arise from the need to represent digital information in computers and transfer it between people and computational devices. Topics include: the digital representation of information - numbers, text, images, and communication protocols.

  • Check out all unit 1 student-facing activity guides here.
  • You can access a flat pdf of all the lessons in unit 1 here.

Digital Information

This unit further explores the ways that digital information is encoded, represented and manipulated. In this unit students will look at and generate data, clean it, manipulate it, and create and use visualizations to identify patterns and trends.

  • Check out all unit 2 student-facing activity guides here.
  • You can access a flat pdf of all the lessons in unit 2 here.

Algorithms and Programming

This unit introduces the foundational concepts of computer programming, which unlocks the ability to make rich, interactive apps. This course uses JavaScript as the programming language, and App Lab as the programming environment to build apps, but the concepts learned in these lessons span all programming languages and tools.

  • Check out all unit 3 student-facing activity guides here.
  • Access a flat pdf of all the lessons in unit 3 here.

Big Data and Privacy

The data rich world we live in also introduces many complex questions related to public policy, law, ethics and societal impact. In many ways this unit acts as a unit on current events. It is highly likely that there will be something related to big data, privacy and security going on in the news at any point in time. The major goals of the unit are 1) for students to develop a well-rounded and balanced view about data in the world around them and both the positive and negative effects of it and 2) to understand the basics of how and why modern encryption works.

  • Check out all unit 4 student-facing activity guides here.
  • Access a flat pdf of all the lessons in unit 4 here.

Building Apps

This unit continues to develop students’ ability to program in the JavaScript language, using Code.org’s App Lab environment to create a series of small applications (apps) that live on the web, each highlighting a core concept of programming. In this unit students transition to creating event-driven apps. The unit assumes that students have learned the concepts and skills from Unit 3, namely: writing and using functions, using simple repeat loops, being able to read documentation, collaborating, and using the Code Studio environment with App Lab.

  • Check out all unit 5 student-facing activity guides here.
  • Access a flat pdf of all the lessons in unit 5 here.

AP Performance Tasks

This unit contains lessons to help students with preparation and execution of the AP® Performance Tasks: Create and Explore