Advanced Placement

Preparing students to be college and career ready in the diverse and ever changing global community of the 21st century!

The AP Program at La Quinta High School currently offers 9 courses across multiple subject areas. Each course is developed by a committee composed of college faculty and AP teachers, and ensures that the course reflects college and university-level expectations. Each course 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 are regularly trained and 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.

Advanced Placement courses are taught at a college level and require excellent organizational skills, strong study habits, the ability to work independently, and a high level of interest and commitment. Students can expect to spend substantial time outside of class preparing assignments, reading, and writing papers. In addition, Advanced Placement students may have summer assignments to prepare them for the challenge of their Advanced Placement course(s).

The AP Exams

The AP Examinations are administered each year in May and represent the culmination of college-level work in a given discipline in a secondary school setting. Rigorously developed by committees of college and AP high school faculty, the AP Exams test students' ability to perform at a college level.

Development Committees meet throughout the year to create new exams, which each contain a free-response section (either essay or problem solving) and a section of multiple-choice questions. (The only subject that does not follow this format is AP Studio Art, which is a portfolio assessment.) The world language exams also have a speaking component. The multiple-choice questions are scored by computer, while the free-response portions are evaluated by a team of skilled college professors and high school teachers who meet annually to score exams in their subject area. The involvement of college faculty at all levels of exam development and scoring ensures that the AP Exams truly reflect college-level achievement. Students who perform well can receive course credit and/or advanced standing at thousands of universities worldwide.