This course is cross-listed in the math and science departments. AP Computer Science A is an introductory course in computer science for those who already have some basic programming experience. The course emphasizes object-oriented programming methodology with a concentration on problem solving and algorithm development, and is the equivalent of a first semester college-level course in computer science.
The central activity of the course is the design and implementation of computer programs to solve problems; the goal of the course is to develop and hone skills that are fundamental to the study of computer science. Creating computer programs is used as a context for introducing other important aspects of computer science, including the development and analysis of algorithms, the development and use of classes and fundamental data structures, the study of standard algorithms and typical applications, and the use of logic and formal methods. The responsible use of these systems is an integral part of the course.
The computer language studied is Java, as required by the AP curriculum. The prerequisites for entering this course include knowledge of algebra, a foundation of mathematical reasoning, and experience in problem solving. In addition, because documentation plays a central role in the programming methodology, competence in written communication is a requirement. It is expected that all students in the course will sit for the AP Computer Science A exam, which is administered in the spring semester.
Open to: Juniors and seniors