Computer science and the tools it fosters now form the foundation for the way we live our lives. To be well-rounded citizens in an increasingly computer centric world and to be prepared for emerging careers, students must have a clear understanding of the principles and practices of computer science. While significant strides are still needed in the endeavor to make computer science available to all students, AP Computer Science Principles offers a substantial step towards that auspicious goal. The course is designed to serve as a college-caliber computer science course aimed at exposing students to the fundamental principles and practices of computer science. 

 

According to a 2011 College Board Study,

  • Students that take AP CS are 8 times more likely to major in CS in college.

  • In the summer of 2010, Google surveyed a sample of its US employees about exposure to CS prior to college:

    • Nearly all CS majors (98%) reported being exposed to CS prior to college, compared to less than half of non-CS majors (45%).

    • Those who went on to major in CS were more likely than non-majors to have had a CS class offered in their high school.

    • CS majors were more likely to have know that CS was a possible career path when they were in high school.

 
Source: COLLLEGE BOARD, IS AP EXAM PARTICIPATION AND PERFORMANCE RELATED TO CHOICE OF COLLEGE MAJOR?
(RESEARCH REPORT 2011-06, 2011) available at
http://professionals.collegeboard.com/profdownload/pdf/RR2011-6.pdf. Google, Survey Results of U.S. Employees (2010) (unpublished). 
 

According to a summer 2015 Gallup and Google research project,

"Many students, parents and K-12 teachers and administrators in the U.S. highly value computer science education. Parents see computer science education as a good use of school resources and often think it is just as important as other courses. Two-thirds of parents think computer science should be required learning in schools. Parents in lower-income households are even more likely to have this view. Many students expect to learn computer science and to use it in their future career in some way."

Through a massive, national collaboration between NSF-funded partners, Project Lead the Way, the College Board, and CODE.org, a variety of courses have been developed that are ready to be implement in high school classrooms. These programs include professional development, free coding environments, evidence-based curriculum, and emergent, research-based pedagogical strategies.

 

If your school does not offer any introductory computer science courses, consider the new Exploring Computer Science course which has been developed to democratize computer science and serve as a starting point for all students.