Course Descriptions

Calculus AB, New Teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years AP Experience)

Tom Patrick

This session is designed for new teachers. This workshop provides teachers with the tools they need to implement effective AP Calculus AB courses. During this training, teachers will explore the mathematical practices for AP Calculus (MPACs) and the components of the curriculum framework, including the big ideas, enduring understandings, learning objectives, and essential knowledge. Participants will understand how to use activities that organize the course content to develop students’ proficiencies in the skills identified by the curriculum framework. In addition, participants will work on a course plan that will help them decide how they will teach the skills and content of the AP Calculus AB courses.

Calculus BC, New Teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years  AP experience)

Joseph Brandell, St. Mary’s Preparatory

During the Institute, all topics for an AP Calculus BC Course, as outlined by the College Board, will be presented.  “Best practices” for presenting the content is modeled for the participants, as well as discussion on strategies that allow for differentiated instruction. Topics will be spiraled and integrated in a natural progression. It is vital participants plan to share and participate in this interactive week.  Alternative assessments, as well as student work, will be presented as a part of daily sessions. AP exam problems will be examined and discussed to foster an understanding of the material and the College Board philosophy.  Textbooks from a variety of publishers will be available for participants to examine and keep.  Textbook selection will be a focal point of one of the sessions.  Again, all participants are expected to participant in daily discussions in what should be a wonderful, interactive week.  If you have any questions before the Institutes begin, please feel free to contact me as the schedule is tentative and will be adjusted to the participants.

Chemistry, Combined Teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years  AP experience)

Steven Thompson, Brookwood High School, Snellville, GA

We will be discussing audit, timelines and syllabus requirements, the 9 units with learning objectives, and guided inquiry based labs, use of myap at AP Central and guided activities. Additional topics will be discussed as selected by the group based on the group’s teaching experiences and knowledge. Register early: due to lab space this course is capped at 22.

English Language and Composition, New AP Teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years  AP experience)

Patricia Vandever

The 2020 Wake Forest University APSI will focus on instructional strategies for teachers new to the subject of AP Language and Composition. Participants will explore numerous techniques to enhance students’ multiple choice test-taking skills and will engage with several released multiple choice selections from a variety of genres, as well as the new type of composition questions. All three essay types—the synthesis essay, the rhetorical analysis, and the argument essay—will be covered. Participants will write their own sample essays and will practice scoring using the new analytic rubrics. The course will focus on differentiated learning styles, rhetorical analyses of both fiction and non-fiction, and test preparation and simulation. Class members will create their own synthesis essay assignments and study the impact of cartoons, graphs, and other visuals in the art of the argument. Participants will have time to create lessons using the new course binder and share instructional ideas with others. The class will also take a field trip during the middle of the week to explore the connection between art and rhetoric.

English Literature and Composition, New AP Teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years  AP experience)

Bill Pell, Spartanburg Day School, Spartanburg SC

Participants in this summer institute explore the philosophy, structure, and grading of the AP English Literature course and examination.  The institute spends substantial time on the analytical processes that drive AP English Literature, focusing on tone, irony, point of view, poetry, and “Syntaxwhat’sthat.”  Symbol/allegory, prose analysis, and figures of speech are also emphasized.  These elements “keep it simple” and provide a framework for teachers to develop a curriculum and for students to learn to analyze AP style.  The institute examines composition strategies for the AP classroom.  Student essays from recent AP exams are important here, and a simulated AP reading is part of this segment.  The institute also suggests strategies for teaching and taking the multiple-choice section of the AP exam, including a simulated multiple-choice session.  The recently released materials from the College Board play a significant role throughout the week, especially the Course and Exam Description (CED), the new 6-point rubric, and the online program AP Classroom.

Government and Politics, United States, Combined Teachers: Redesigned for Fall 2018
Jonathan Milner, North Carolina School of the Arts

During the U.S. Government and Politics section you will:

  • Become familiar with the AP U.S. Government and Politics curriculum and exam structure
  • Receive exams, lessons and supplementary materials
  • Design lessons, exams and strategies to build student success
  • Learn AP U.S. government content
  • Practice integrating technology into the AP U.S. Government curriculum

During our seminar we will cover

  • Goals
  • Concerns, expectations, questions
  • AP philosophy
  • AP exam structure
  • National AP statistics
  • Student selection
  • Curriculum content, content, content
  • Methodology
  • Syllabus
  • Free Response Review
  • Multiple choice exam review
  • AP Free Response Exam Workshop
  • AP Multiple Choice Exam Workshop
  • Model lessons
  • Journal reviews
  • Outside readings
  • Textbook selection
  • Building critical thinking
  • Supplementary materials and programs
  • Technology, technology, technology
  • Connections to AP Comparative Politics
  • Beyond AP
  • Engaging student citizens

Please bring the following

  • Your current class syllabus (if you have one)
  • Your textbook (if you have it. AP textbooks will be provided)

If you have any questions, please contact Jonathan Milner at
You can connect to our AP Government class website at

Psychology, New AP teachers (for teachers who have never taught AP or have 1-3 years  AP experience but Experienced AP teachers are welcomed to attend)

Larry Stombaugh, The Career Center, Winston-Salem, NC

The AP Psychology course for the Wake Forest Summer Institute will include a comprehensive review of course content. The first three days of the workshop will include an overview of the important terms and concepts of the course as will as an integration of activities and assignments that supplement the course content. One day will be devoted to helping teachers to prepare students for the AP Exam with an emphasis on helping them with the Free-Response section of the Exam. The last day of the institute will focus on planning and scheduling to help participants to develop a pacing guide. During the week, there will also be a two hour lab during which participants will be able to visit websites that complement the course as well as to review labs that students can do to assist them in their learning of the course content.

Spanish Language and Culture, Combined Teachers (for new and experienced AP teachers)

Gustavo Fares, Lawrence University, Appleton, WI

The APSI is designed to familiarize teachers with the AP Spanish Language and Culture Course and Exam. The Institute attends to the needs of both new and experienced teachers of AP Spanish Language and Culture. Throughout the four days we will examine best practices and strategies, and present activities for increasing student proficiency in the three communicational modes with an emphasis on integration of skills and use of authentic materials. We will review the exam format and rubrics using the College Board’s latest materials. Participants will be invited to actively participate and share their knowledge and experiences with the entire group on a daily basis. Likewise, they will develop and share individual projects and specific activities to be used during the academic year, and will leave with a toolbox of strategies to implement and successfully teach the course.

Course Goals:
1) To familiarize ourselves with the format of all parts of the AP Spanish Language and Culture exam. The course was re-designed for 2014. We will discuss the redesign and the exams from subsequent years in detail, with examples from the 2019 exam;
2) To review the grading of the free response questions of the AP Spanish Language and Culture exam and to learn strategies to holistically evaluate students’ competencies in the target language.
3) To examine, analyze, and discuss a range of materials and resources, both in book and in digital formats, suitable for the AP Spanish Language and Culture class;
4) To prepare, share, and discuss successful classroom strategies for integrating the three modes of communication (interpretive, interpersonal, and presentational), with activities based on authentic resources.

Topics will include the following:
• Foundations of Advanced Placement
• Building an AP Program and ways to involve all teachers (developing an AP Vertical Team).
• Developing and integrating the three modes of communication; Interpretive, Interpersonal and Presentational.
• Teaching AP Spanish Language and Culture across themes. Using the recommended contexts, developing new ideas.
• Putting the Curriculum Framework into practice.
• Teaching and Developing Culture in the AP Spanish Language and Culture Course.
• Instructional Design and Management
• Using authentic resources and integration of skills.
• Building proficiency across modes of communication.
• Developing vocabulary skills and strategies.
• Integrating authentic literary and non-lite

United States History, Combined Teachers (for new and experienced AP teachers)

Thomas F Sleete, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology

The goals of this course are to assist both the teacher and his/her students manage the scope, depth, and complexities of the AP US History course, and, more importantly, help students achieve a deeper knowledge and understanding of American History. Among the topics and activities that will be included in the various sessions are:

  • Course Redesign: Writing rubrics were changed, again, in the summer of 2017. Course changes maintain the flexibility to focus on specific historical topics, events, and issues in depth. The focus of this summer’s institute will be devoted to covering these changes and planning how to implement them into each teacher’s classroom. In addition, we will examine the new materials made available for the 2019-2020 academic year, by the College Board. These include Test Banks, Unit Guides, Student Dashboards, and other changes.
  • Tools for a successful AP® Course: They include Historical Reasoning Skills and the Course, Using the Concept Outline, Using the Thematic Learning Objectives, Analyzing Historical Sources, and Creating a Unit of Instruction.
  • Achieving equity access, along with review of the audit process will be covered. Furthermore, suggestions for textbook selection, choosing outside readings both primary and secondary, and access to online and print resources will be discussed.
  • Provide an overview of the structure of the exam: This session will discuss details of the redesigned exam and the skills necessary for success in same. Testing tips for taking each section of the exam will also be covered and demonstrated. Review tips will be part of this segment.
  • Improve student essay writing: How to prepare students for the rigors of writing successfully for the AP® exam. Thesis writing and contextualization, along with mastery of the rubric, will be covered in detail. The basic structure of essay writing will be discussed along with tips on what constitutes a solid history essay.
  • Improve student reading skills. Many varied and successful strategies that provide students with the ability to analyze, interpret, and comprehend both primary and secondary sources will be provided, demonstrated, and revised to suit the participants’ classes.
  • Best practices: Threaded throughout the workshop, examples of best practices will be exhibited. Engaging the participants in lessons of high interest to their students will be a focus throughout this seminar. Participants will end the week with a number and variety of lessons to immediately use in their classroom. Teachers attending will participate in several sample lessons, and creating unit plans. This will include an exchange of ideas and teaching techniques with fellow participants:
  • Writing Unit Plans: Participants will create unit plans while working with other attendees in order to best prepare teaching the course and using the new materials from the College Board.

World History, Combined Teachers (for new and experienced AP teachers)

Charles HartWestmont High School, Westmont, IL

The intent of this week long workshop in AP World History is to introduce the basic strategies, pace, and content of the course to teachers new to the program and to discuss essay evaluative procedures, note-taking suggestions, and recruitment thoughts for the more experienced teachers. Best practices will be available for everyone, of course, focus will be entirely on the new format. Topics discussed will be determined, in part, by the needs of the workshop participants but typically include the following:

  • The New Format: The extent to which your course needs to be “overhauled” or “tweaked” will be discussed with an emphasis on how the test has changed
  • Textbook Selection: different publishers will supply an assortment of take-away textbooks for your perusal
  • The Acorn Book: College Board provides it and says it’s what you need to successfully teach the course (but we will quickly get beyond it)
  • To Lecture or Not: There are alternatives–to what extent do you have to repeat what the text already says?
  • Note Taking Strategies: Most of your students don’t know how to do it. This workshop has several suggestions that will get your kids beyond Cornell and make the textbook relevant
  • Is The Course a Stairwell, an Elevator, or an Escalator: One is too slow, one is too exclusive, and one is just right for you! Let’s talk pace.
  • When Do You Hold Their Hand, when do you kick them in the butt, and When Do You Grab Their Throat: After all, It is A.P. . . and sometimes they have to just do it!
  • Essays, Essays, and More Essays! Strategies, evaluative techniques, and rubrics. How do they evaluate them In Salt Lake City and how should you evaluate them in your school? What are the trends? You will read and we will evaluate.
  • To Review Or Not: You better do it. And this workshop will have some tried-and-true ideas, including test-taking strategies, graphic organizers, and review terms.  Literally dozens of activities will be provided
  • Sample Lesson Plans: A smorgasbord of lesson plans, some requiring as little as 5 minutes to prepare, will be modeled with the idea of melding content with skills and all geared toward the AP historical thinking skills.
  • The Nine Commandments of Teaching AP History: This is no return from the mountain but in reading for the College Board since the 1980s I have put together a philosophy that might be worth sharing. I know they served me well over the years.

Besides the above, a thumb-drive will be provided with best practices, sample essays and essay responses, multiple choice guidelines, over three hundred pages of AP-level multiple choice questions, and much more. Participants are asked to bring their laptop, and a copy of their classroom text. If there are questions, concerns, or suggestions, please contact me at I look forward to seeing you