Advanced Placement Information

Test Preparation

Advanced Placement Courses

Overview

Centennial High School is proud to offer a wide range of AP courses to students in all 4 grade levels. Students interested in taking AP courses should look a the Course Catolog for options or speak with their Guidance Counselor. On this page, students and parents can find information about Advanced Placement Courses offered by College Board, Centennial High School's Centennial Scholars Program, and our CHS electives.

Centennial Scholar's Program Information: Below is the information provided to all of our current 8th graders coming to CHS next year. Current 9th, 10th, and 11th graders only need to talk to their counselor.

The AP Program currently offers more than 30 courses across multiple subject areas. Each course is developed by a committee composed of college faculty and AP teachers, and covers the breadth of information, skills, and assignments found in the corresponding college course.

AP courses are taught by highly qualified high school teachers who use the AP Course Descriptions to guide them. The Course Description for each discipline outlines the course content, describes the curricular goals of the subject, and provides sample examination questions. While the Course Descriptions are a significant source of information about the course content on which the AP Exams will be based, AP teachers have the flexibility to determine how this content is presented. Published in the spring of the school year before the course will be taught, the Course Descriptions are available in this section of AP Central, accompanied by a course perspective written by an experienced AP teacher. These perspectives represent the personal viewpoints and teaching styles of their authors; however, we hope they will provide insight and inspiration for other educators.

AP Coordinator Contact Information Mrs. Andrea Covington AP Coordinator acovington@hcpss.org 410-313-2856

Courses Offered

  • English 11
  • English 12
  • Humanities III AP (Eng.)
  • Humanities IV AP (Eng.)
  • World History
  • Government & Politics
  • Comparative Government & Politics
  • European History
  • United States History
  • Human Geography
  • Humanities II AP (Govt/Pol)
  • Humanities III AP (SS)
  • Psychology
  • Microeconomics/Macroeconomics
  • Statistics
  • Calculus AB
  • Calculus C/Multivariate Calculus
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics C: Mechanics
  • Physics I and Physics II
  • Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
  • Environmental Science
  • Computer Science III
  • French V - AP French Language & Culture
  • French Literature
  • German IV - AP German Language & Culture
  • Spanish Literature
  • Spanish V - AP Spanish Language
  • Chinese IV - AP Chinese Lang & Culture
  • Art III: Portfolio Development - AP
  • Art IV: Personal Dir in Art Studio - AP
  • Music Theory II
  • Photography III: Personal Dir in Photo-AP
  • Photography II: Portfolio Dev- AP
  • Art History

Reasons to take Advanced Placement Courses

Stand out in College Admissions

College application season can be an anxious time for you, your family and just about everyone who cares about you. You’ve worked hard and done your best, but how do you know you’ve got the academic experience that colleges are looking for?

  • By making the decision to take an AP course, you’re letting colleges and universities know that you have what it takes to succeed in an undergraduate environment. AP courses signal to admissions officers that you’ve undertaken the most rigorous classes your high school has to offer. They see that you’ve challenged yourself with college-level course work and expectations, and have refined your skills to meet these expectations. In the increasingly competitive admissions process, this knowledge can be very valuable.
  • AP courses offer admissions officers a consistent measure of course rigor across high schools, districts, states and countries — because all AP teachers, no matter where they’re teaching, have to provide a curriculum that meets college standards. So when admissions officers see “AP” on your transcript, they have a good understanding of what you experienced in a particular class and how well it prepared you for the increased challenges of college.

Student Testimonials

Advanced Composition

If you asked a handful of students what their favorite things about high school are there’s a very small chance that any would respond with “writing” (that is if they have never taken advanced comp). Advanced comp is definitely one of the best-kept secrets. You hear about how sociology is fun with the baby project, how anatomy is fun with dissecting cats, and how African American studies watches a lot of movies, but do you know what happens in Advanced Comp? This class is one where you are constantly learning, but you are not aware of it. Every class is filled with laughter, stories, and something to help you better your writing. The setup isn’t that of a normal class. It is set up in a manner so that you have the opportunity every second, of every class, to get to know the people around you and share what you have written with them. Because of this, the students become like a family, bonding in ways that you wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to in any other class. Advanced comp is taught by Mr. O’Brien who is not only one of the best teachers in the school, but is also one of the most relatable and enjoyable. From my own personal experience, I know that anyone who already enjoys writing, or wants to get better at it, should take this class. You don’t have to be good at writing and you don’t even have to want to make a career out of it later! All you need is the desire to improve and share and you will not only have your expectations met, they will be surpassed.

German 4 AP

Taking German at the AP level has been an enriching experience. Our class has learned so much about German culture in addition to the language. Never have I been in a class where I was able to choose ten vocabulary words that I wanted to learn, while the student sitting next to me could be learning ten completely different words. For the first time, I am able to see content written by a German author for German speakers, that I can start to understand. The class is especially exciting because the curriculum is focused around six themes which can appeal to any student, students have the opportunity to individualize their learning experience, and the lessons provide exposure to authentic German material.

The AP class is based around 6 themes, which we apply to the entire curriculum. These themes are Globalization, Science & Technology, Everyday Life, Personal & Public Identity, Family & Society, and Beauty & Aesthetics. Especially important in today’s world, as it is occurring faster and to a greater degree than ever before, globalization is the effect that makes the world seem smaller. Due to great advances in the realms of transportation and technology, people and information are able to move around the word faster than ever before, causing people all over the world to be more in touch. Science and technology are of course always relevant and worth studying. Everyday life is especially important to study because of the very essence of what it is; this theme focuses on events that occur everyday. Personal and public identity focuses around the idea of self (who am I and how am I perceived by others?), while family and society focuses on the people around oneself (with whom am I acquainted and what is the role of these people in my community?). Lastly, beauty and aesthetics is based around objects that are visually appealing. These are my interpretations of the AP Themes. What I have found to be most interesting about the themes is that each student interprets them a little bit differently. Through these six broad themes and the countless possible different ways to interpret them, AP level German is really a class that is full of possibilities. Students in this class have the opportunity to make decisions about what they learn.

Often in German class, the assignments and projects are individualized based one what interests each student. For example, we often write critiques on ten-minute German news programs. Each news program presents about five to ten different topics. Every student in the class gets to choose which topic to focus on intensively in our critiques. Another example comes from when we were learning about Berlin. We all learned about Berlin together as a class, but each student got to choose one landmark in Berlin on which to do a project and present to the rest of the class. And perhaps my favorite example was earlier this year, when we were reflecting on a class discussion we had just finished, and one student stated that she did not find the topic to be interesting, and that the discussions would be more intriguing if we had topics that interested the students. In response to this, our teacher had us, for homework, each think of a topic for our next discussion.

The final aspect of German 4 AP that I must mention is that we come in contact with authentic material. Before this level in German, when we read passages or dialogues in German, they were written for students that were learning German as a second language. They were made specifically to incorporate the vocabulary that we were studying in that lesson. At the AP level, we read articles, stories and scripts that were written by German writers for other German speakers to read. The vocabulary that we learn comes from what we read, not the other way around. And often we are prompted to choose which vocabulary words we learn, so that each student can choose a set of words from the piece we read, that he or she thinks, he or she is most likely to use. In addition to the content we read, we also watch videos in German, and listen to German podcasts or radio programs that are made for speakers of the German language. Through using authentic material we are not only exposed to the German language, but also to German culture.

I have learned so much already in just the first semester of German 4 AP. It is a class that is both fun and challenging. The AP Themes provide a helpful platform on which to base the curriculum. The class allows for students to forge their own path, so to speak, and learn what they believe will be helpful to them. And exposure to authentic German material gives insight into the uses of the language and the culture attached to the language. I am already so excited to find out what next semester holds. I would recommend to any student of German that they stick with the language for all four years of high school. Each year just gets better and better.

- Samantha Whittemore, Class of 2014

Photography

After having a stressful day in my other classes, I’m glad I have Photography Class to look forward too. A break from my schedule, Photography is great class to continue your skills with photo taking. No matter what level of Photography you are in, you will learn new techniques and creative ways to improve your photographs and your portfolio. You will continue studying famous photographers and there techniques and ways on how they captured their own images. Photography is a great class in that you will also be taught how to properly use a film camera to create your best rolls of film. Our school is also fortunate enough to have our own darkroom to develop our film and prints. You will learn the steps of how to correctly develop your film and how to create the perfect print from your negatives. This allows students to see a different side of photography rather than the digital side. Throughout the year you will be adding important notes and images into your own journal to keep track of what you have done over time. It’s also a great token to have after the school year is over to look back at your progress. If you keep on top with all the work that needs to be done in class, then Photography will be a great class to take!

Kyle Berstein - Senior, Photo II Honors

Chinese

Starting freshman year of high school, I began to embark upon the Chinese language provided at my school. The adventure started simple and fun; the basics were easy to comprehend and the Chinese culture was interesting to divulge in. However, every new semester, the course became deeper and I became closer to the language itself; speaking became more professional, writing became more complex, and listening became more fluent. Chinese wasn’t just an “easy” or “fun” course anymore, it developed into a serious and important class and a part of what define me today. I have taken various classes in my high school career, but my Chinese class was always the class I was the most interactive, joyful, and interested in. A simple, fun, and enjoyable Chinese class has now taken a portion of me that reflects my personal interests and identity. Therefore, I believe the Chinese program has influenced me to push, but enjoy myself in pursuing my dreams of further exploring the Chinese language and culture.

- Arin Ryu, CHS student