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AP Summer Institute

Session Descriptions

The 2018 Advanced Placement* Summer Institute will take place at Northwestern University's Chicago Campus,  Wieboldt Hall, 339 E. Chicago Avenue, Chicago IL 60611.

All workshops will meet Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with breaks for refreshments and lunch.

Session I: Sample Offerings

Register for Session I: July 8–11

English Language and Composition (Novice AP* Teachers) 

This workshop is designed specifically for teachers with one to three years of experience in AP* English or for experienced teachers new to the AP* curriculum. Our work will deal with the following practical concerns: the course audit, practical test-taking strategies, sample syllabi,  types of texts and/or authors to cover, how many and what types writing assignments to use, managing the paper load, the appropriate amount of homework, what constitutes college level work, the implications of the revised course framework, and the impact of AP* on the rest of the curriculum. Participants will examine the AP* exam (including changes to some of the features of the exam), identifying the skills tested there, and subsequently, preparing a syllabus that works with those reading and writing skills. Selected authors studied will reflect essays from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries.   The session will also highlight the changes to the AP exam, focusing on the multiple choice assessments and analytic rubrics.

English Literature and Composition (Novice AP* Teachers)
This workshop focuses on teaching and developing both critical reading skills and composition skills. Participants will examine the AP exam, identifying the skills tested there, and instead of "teaching to a test," will develop strategies to teach those critical reading and writing skills necessary for success in an AP literature class. Authors from Sophocles to Shakespeare to Virginia Woolf will be covered. Participants will work with particular lessons from a variety of authors. Aristotle's The Poetics, Shakespeare's Othello, Hamlet and The Tempest, William Wordsworth and the Romantic Poets, T.S. Eliot, William Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury, and Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse and Between the Acts are among the texts we will consider.

European History (Combined)
The course will provide overviews of the content covering the period from the Renaissance to the present. We will discuss course content, organization and pacing, using primary sources, teaching strategies, and a variety of learning activities. We will focus on essay writing, preparing students for the DBQ, and review past AP* exam items. AP® European History has been redesigned and a further reorganization of the curriculum will be announced in May. Instructors are strongly encouraged to attend in order to prepare for these changes and learn of the new resources available. 

French Language (Combined)

This workshop will provide an overview of the structure and content of the AP French Language and Culture course. It will give participants an overview of new unit guides and instructional strategies created by the College Board, as well as the new resources which will be made available to registered teachers in the Fall of 2019: an AP question bank to use on formative assessments and an AP classroom platform to check student progress. In addition, the workshop will provide opportunities to discuss approaches to vertical and horizontal planning, explore and share essential resources and teaching strategies. Participants will view sample lessons, sample syllabi, and curriculum modules, as well as engage in developing lesson plans, and evaluation tasks. Finally, participants will share and discuss best practices and tips that work to assist colleagues in the day-to-day classroom teaching and learning context.

Participants are encouraged to bring samples of their own students' work from this past school year for possible group discussion and scoring using the AP* rubrics. Participants are asked to bring a laptop computer, a copy of their present syllabus, and any textbooks/resource materials they plan to use in the coming school year, and create a Google account (if they don’t already have one) for sharing files.

German Language (Combined) 

The AP German consultant introduces participants to the new classroom resources and support system included in the updates to the AP German Language and Culture course for the 2019-20 school year. These revisions will give teachers a more definite sense of the content and skills that will be tested on the AP Exam. During the workshop, the participants explore the components of the online classroom, which consists of personal progress checks, a question bank, units guides, and a progress dashboard.  Participants will additionally learn how to develop questions for selected authentic materials better and be given ample opportunity to collaborate in small groups. For new and experienced teachers, the requirements for 2019-20 AP Course Audit and updated registration process will be thoroughly reviewed. Each participant will receive the updated course and exam information in a customizable binder which assist with the digital activation process to access the new resources starting August 1, 2019. 

Psychology (Combined)

This course is designed for both new and experienced teachers of AP Psychology and will include classroom activities, instructional techniques, teaching resources and assessment tools that prepare students for success on the AP exam.  Participants will discuss, develop and share teaching materials, internet resources, rubric designs and AP exam preparation tactics for the major content areas in psychology.  Participants will leave with a variety of strategies to implement and successfully teach the course. 

Spanish Language (Combined) 
This summer institute is designed to familiarize teachers with the new AP Spanish Language and Culture Course and Exam. The course will provide sample materials and classroom activities relating to the new exam and recent changes to the course. Participants will be invited to actively participate and share best practices with the entire group on a daily basis. They will leave with a toolbox of strategies to implement and successfully teach the course.

U.S. History (Combined)
This week will consist of a mix of pedagogy and content all focused on the successful implementation of the Advanced Placement United States History course.  We will focus on the writing and analytical skills needed for the course as well as the curriculum framework.  Participants are encouraged to bring their laptop; they will receive numerous resources.

Day 1-Introductions/AP History Practices and Skills /Understanding the Structure of the Course Framework/Reading Comprehension activity (Inner outer circle)/Historical Reasoning Skill of Comparison (Comparison Activity) HOMEWORK-Bring your favorite primary and secondary source.

Day 2-Analyzing Primary and Secondary Sources/Writing Thesis Statements and the Document Based Question!  Multiple Choice and writing our own Multiple Choice questions and mini-DBQ’s!  Historical Skill of Change and Continuity. HOMEWORK-Bring your favorite Political Cartoon!

Day 3-The Short Answer Question/Long Essay Question/ Historical Thinking Skill of Causation and Argument Development.  HOMEWORK-Bring your favorite lesson!

Day 4-Sequencing the Course/Syllabus Development/Bringing Skills and Content together with a lesson from the 1950’s!  Share Best Practices!


Session II: Sample Offerings

Register for Session II: July 15–18
  • Art History - 2019 Session Cancelled
  • Economics (Micro/Macro) - 2019 Session Cancelled

Calculus AB (Combined)
The class is designed to cover all the major topics of AB Calculus. Teaching strategies, appropriate use of technology and problem solving techniques are all used and discussed to help instructors better teach their students. Review of past AP exams along with how they are graded will be a big part of the week as well. Participants should bring a graphing calculator and a flash drive.

English Language and Composition (Adept AP* Teachers)
AP* English Language and Composition focuses on the skills articulated by the College Board*, which feature the following modes: rhetorical analysis, synthesis, and original argument. At the core of this workshop is the analysis of close reading skills; participants will examine a range of strategies with which to develop students' reading abilities. *These discussions will incorporate an introduction to the announced changes related to multiple choice questions and the new essay scoring rubric.* In addition to becoming familiar with all facets of the AP* English Language exam, participants will also explore ways to incorporate the world as a text and gain experience in writing assignments that integrate issues relevant to the communities in which they teach. The workshop will include an experiential lesson outside of our classroom to help participants apply the skills assessed by the exam in a real world setting. Significant time will be dedicated to meaningful collaboration with other participants and for the development of original free response passages and projects they may bring back to their classrooms. Participants will be provided with text sets to read before the institute which will act as catalysts for group discussion and opportunity to share classroom strategies. All participants are encouraged to bring their laptop and will receive numerous resources.

English Literature and Composition (Adept AP* Teachers)

This workshop is for experienced teachers of AP* English Literature, teachers who have taught the course for at least three years and who have participated in a one-week summer institute in Literature and Composition. Participants should be interested in further development or redesign of their classroom coursework. Our overriding concern for the week will focus on the differences between teaching reading and writing in an AP* course versus assigning reading and writing. This focus forces us to rethink coverage versus depth with our chosen texts and should prompt open discussions about our syllabi. Mornings will be devoted to group discussions and problem-solving on issues common to us all: designing and evaluating writing assignments, choosing authors and texts appropriate for our courses and our student bodies and communities, and ensuring that the exams are not the guiding forces in the classes. In the afternoons, we will work individually and in small groups to design or redesign our curricula. The instructor will work with each participant in these afternoon sessions. 

Human Geography (Combined)

This workshop is designed for new and experienced AP Human Geography teachers. Specifically, this session will be geared towards analysis and incorporation of the New AP* Human Geography update for the 2019-20 school year. Throughout the week, participants will engage in the following: syllabus/course audit development; covering key concepts in all seven units; developing multiple choice and free response skills; lesson ideas; test analysis; and the use of online sources. Lessons will be modeled for each of the seven units. Depending on the weather, we will complete a field study off campus. Participants will gain access to a google team drive with thousands of files including powerpoints, lesson idea, website links and test prep materials for the AP exam.

Statistics (Combined)

This workshop, designed for new and experienced AP Statistics teachers, will provide an overview of the topics included in the AP Statistics syllabus including the broad conceptual themes: Exploring Data, Sampling and Experimentation, Anticipating Patterns and Statistical Inference. In addition, this workshop will include curriculum design, in-class activities, simulations on the TI-83/84 and Inspire calculators, text selection, AP examination expectations, grading, and information regarding the College Board audit. We will also explore the new online support materials on AP Central that was recently released by the College Board. This will be a hands-on workshop. Participants should bring a TI83/84, Inspire (or other) graphing calculator.

World History—Modern  (Combined)
Participants will explore the AP* World History--Modern course, including learning objectives, essential knowledge (key concepts), and historical thinking skills and reasoning processes. Participants will learn and apply the most recent guidelines for assessing student knowledge, including the AP Exam (multiple choice, short answer, and free response sections). Participants will create lessons to help their students gain understanding of the course content and the skills necessary for success on the exam and in college work. The workshop will also explore techniques for working with under-served populations, focusing on equitable access. Participants may, in addition, choose to revise or create a syllabus.

U.S. Government and Politics (Combined)
The goal of this Northwestern APSI is to provide you with the pragmatic lessons, content, instructional skills, and resources to better prepare your students for the AP US Government and Politics Course and Exam. With the redesign year behind us, there will be a special focus on the new curriculum and assessment methods.  In addition, this course is extremely interactive and hands on seeking participants to share best practices. Instructor Bryan Ashkettle will also send out a survey prior in order to address your needs, questions, and concerns in order to better your content, knowledge, and instruction. He is very committed to making the week as fun and useful as possible.

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*College Board, AP, Advanced Placement and the acorn logo are registered trademarks of the College Board. Used with permission.

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