Ap computer science exam

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#1 gibson.nathan  Icon User is offline

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Ap computer science exam

Posted 07 November 2009 - 05:18 PM

im in high school now taking ap computer science. im supposed to take the exam in the spring. just wondering how many of you programming pros took the exam in high school, and how did you do? is doing well on this something that would help you once you got to college?
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#2 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 07 November 2009 - 07:40 PM

I'm in AP Comp. Sci right now, and my teacher came back from the AP CS conference in Birmingham a week ago where he specifically asked this question. The response he got was that AP CS is like any other AP- it looks good on a college application. And also, the professors in the CS departments like the way the course is now and say that students who have previously taken this course tend to be better prepared than those who don't. They were emphatically against the College Board's desire to change the direction of this course.
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#3 gibson.nathan  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 07 November 2009 - 08:14 PM

my school didn't offer it until this year. i was ecstatic about signing up. there are only two people in my class! its a great way to get your feet wet and see if you would want to pursue something like computer science as a college major. i really love it. i was told that if you pass the exam you can use the credit in college and not have to take intro to computer science, but i think i would rather still take them. what was the purposed change?

This post has been edited by gibson.nathan: 07 November 2009 - 08:15 PM

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#4 Dogstopper  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 08 November 2009 - 05:01 PM

I took it last year as a freshman. There were 5 others, and it was a school-sponsored class, but it was before school class. Like it started at 6:50 in the morning! It only counted for a smaller average of my GPA than it does if i were during school. So, now that I'm a sophomore, they decided to make it an official class during the day AND give it a higher GPA percentage. Kinda ticks me off a bit.

But yah, I took it, and got a 4.0 on the test!

Good luck!
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#5 gibson.nathan  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 08 November 2009 - 07:46 PM

lol, i hope we dont have to take it that early. thats way to early for jave. ive never known anyone who has taken it, is it really hard?
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#6 hscompsci  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 16 November 2009 - 11:31 AM

View Postgibson.nathan, on 8 Nov, 2009 - 06:46 PM, said:

lol, i hope we dont have to take it that early. thats way to early for jave. ive never known anyone who has taken it, is it really hard?


I've taught the APCS course since it was in Pascal in the mid nineties.

Look at the results of last year's grading (http://apcs.jodypaul...PCSReading.html)

The failure rate on the APCS A exam has been pretty bad. Nearly 40% of students fail the exam. If you consider that less than 50% of colleges and universities award credit for a score of a three, then I'd say that 50% of all students "fail" the test.

The even worse news this year is that since the AB test has been killed, some of the B topics are being crammed into the A test.

I think what's frustrating for students preparing for the test is that they read all of these boards with students saying "OH IT WAS SOO EASY, I JUST STUDIED A FEW PROGRAMMING BOOKS AND PASSED IT".

The unfortunate problem is that anyone who is good enough to teach APCS generally can make a ton of money coding in industry. So many high schools get noob teachers that while they may know some software engineering, don't understand the exam itself. I've seen too many teachers forget to cover the gridworld case study!

I've put together dedicated resources at http://www.hscompsci.com. It has study guides, online tests and quizzes, and tutoring. http://forum.hscompsci.com only covers one topic, and that is the APCS exam, you are welcome to visit!

This post has been edited by hscompsci: 16 November 2009 - 11:32 AM

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#7 W3bDev  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 23 November 2009 - 07:43 AM

Okay first of all, DogStopper, do you mean you got a 4? Because the exams are not rated the same as a regular grade would.

Anyways, Yes, I took the exam back in 01, before I graduated from High School. Back then it was based in C++, and had to write a lot of code very early in the morning as well lol. I still remember sitting there working on it. It was pretty difficult, and a couple pretty serious free-response questions. I did end up passing the exam with a 3... there were I think only 2-3 others in my AP Comp Sci class that actually passed it if I remember correctly.
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#8 gibson.nathan  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:02 PM

im working myself to death to try to learn all of the material for the apcs exam. as someone has already stated the a and ab exam have been condensed into the a exam. i have talked to people who have said that their ap computer science class was relaxed and easy, but mine is quite the opposite. i honestly do believe that this class could easily give you a huge jump in a programming future. how i wish that i understood all of what we did in that class...

at the end of the semester im throwing a party...
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#9 virgul  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:36 PM

Just remember that no matter what you score on the exam it really matters how you feel about it. If you are in love with programming and get a low score dont let that turn you off of programming. Just make sure you really want to spend the time on it later on in life.

I know for a fact that it isnt an easy test. But its also not the hardest test. Just remember, the AP board wants the bare minimum to get the program to work, they dont care if its beautiful code.
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#10 Dogstopper  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 23 November 2009 - 09:43 PM

View PostW3bDev, on 23 Nov, 2009 - 08:43 AM, said:

Okay first of all, DogStopper, do you mean you got a 4? Because the exams are not rated the same as a regular grade would.


Yah 5.0 is the hghest on the actual AP test, but I got a 4.0 due to stupid gridworld! :crazy:
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#11 W3bDev  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:31 PM

View PostDogstopper, on 23 Nov, 2009 - 08:43 PM, said:

View PostW3bDev, on 23 Nov, 2009 - 08:43 AM, said:

Okay first of all, DogStopper, do you mean you got a 4? Because the exams are not rated the same as a regular grade would.


Yah 5.0 is the hghest on the actual AP test, but I got a 4.0 due to stupid gridworld! :crazy:


oh lol... Yeah, that's cool. I was just happy i passed the thing, as I didn't really know if programming was in my future, but now that I look back on it, I know it was a good experience for me.
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#12 &rew  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 25 November 2009 - 10:13 PM

View Postgibson.nathan, on 23 Nov, 2009 - 08:02 PM, said:

im working myself to death to try to learn all of the material for the apcs exam. as someone has already stated the a and ab exam have been condensed into the a exam. i have talked to people who have said that their ap computer science class was relaxed and easy, but mine is quite the opposite. i honestly do believe that this class could easily give you a huge jump in a programming future. how i wish that i understood all of what we did in that class...

at the end of the semester im throwing a party...


It sounds like you are on the right track in preparing for the exam. When I took the exam a few years back, my teacher worked us harder than any of my other classes had in my high school career. Between her commitment to having us pass and my studying outside of the classroom, I easily passed the exam. I wish you the best of luck.
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#13 cwginac  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 26 November 2009 - 04:29 AM

I took it in '06 after it changed to Java. Got a 5 on it.
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#14 gibson.nathan  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 05 December 2009 - 02:47 PM

i wish the exam was in c#. i just used it recently and was amazed at how simplified things like building gui were.
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#15 AmateurC  Icon User is offline

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Re: Ap computer science exam

Posted 14 December 2009 - 10:03 PM

Just curious, will the computer science tests in college be similar to the AP exam? Will they be harder or easier that the AP exam?

This post has been edited by AmateurC: 14 December 2009 - 10:04 PM

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