[KACT] Re: kact Digest V2 #67

  • From: "Janice Crowley" <jpcrowley@xxxxxxx>
  • To: <kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 7 Dec 2006 20:42:15 -0600

Great discussion on AP Chemistry audit. I belong to the AP Chemistry listserv (through Collegeboard). I get 5-10 emails daily about this topic and the changes to the net ionics!


Janice
----- Original Message ----- From: <kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
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Sent: Thursday, December 07, 2006 1:04 AM
Subject: kact Digest V2 #67


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kact Digest Wed, 06 Dec 2006 Volume: 02  Issue: 067

In This Issue:
[KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce
[KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce
[KACT] Giving Finals

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2006 07:45:13 -0600
From: Terry Tinich <tinicht@xxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: [KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce

Sorry to say but many colleges are NOT having semester finals but just
another exam (this is in many classes not just chem). We say we are
prepping kids for college but themn they come home saying they never had
a final. Confusing!

Bruce Palmer wrote:

I was looking through the guidelines for AP Chemistry and it said one
double period lab per week. What Brad said about 22 recomended labs
and that it was "unreasonable" to expect all labs to be completed made
me think. One semester at our school is 18 weeks Do we get 14 free
weeks? I think that the people on the college level don't understand
the high school calendar and economics.

I don't teach AP chemistry for the test. I teach the students to help
them prepare for college chemistry, not replace college chemistry. My
former students have said for the most part while other students
struggled with chemistry, they felt for the most part very comfortable
and knew what to expect. (These emails are going into the audit)

I know last year there were comments about how poorly students
prepared/worked for finals. I want to know what college has a final
covering an entire year, and why do the AP people expect high school
students to excell at one? Would it not make more sense to have 2 AP
exams (fall and spring) to "better match the college experience" which
is what this whole audit process is about.

I think I am just going to send in what I am doing now and see what
happens.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    From: /"Cline, Brad" <bcline@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>/
    Reply-To: /kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx/
    To: /<kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>/
    Subject: /[KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce/
    Date: /Tue, 5 Dec 2006 08:45:24 -0600/

    We are in the process of doing ours. Our AP coordinator is working
    with us to get some time off to work this out as it is a large
    amount of work to plow through. From a basic standpoint, you have
    to submit your syllabus including the content and lab activities
    you use in your course.

    I personally am glad to see them doing this and I understand
    exactly why they are doing it. As Kelly already has mentioned,
    there are people calling their courses AP which really don't meet
    the criteria. This is an effort to get the courses structured to
    meet the criteria, so the AP course is actually an AP course
    instead of AP in name only. As we entered AP, I was worried our
    district would only support it in name only as a "selling point"
    for the district. This has helped me to get the real support I
    need from the administration as they must help me to meet the
    requirements. They are supporting me in producing a double block
    of time for the AP Chemistry class, so that I have enough time to
    cover all content and cover the 22 recommended labs.

    We haven't started our audit process yet, but I've attended a
    conference on it and since my wife is the AP coordinator for our
    district, I have had some good inside looks at what we are going
    to have to do. There are manuals for helping out with this process
    and a good deal of info at AP Central at College Board's website.

    http://apcentral.collegeboard.com/courseaudit

    Bradley L Cline

    Chemistry I, Chemistry II, Physics Instructor

    Goddard High School

    2500 S 199th St West

    PO Box 189

    Goddard, KS 67052-0189

    bcline@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    *From:* kact-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
    [mailto:kact-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] *On Behalf Of *Kelly Deters
    *Sent:* Tuesday, December 05, 2006 8:11 AM
    *To:* kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
    *Subject:* [KACT] AP Audits from Bruce

    Bruce passed this question along to me:

    Also the AP audits are coming up in January. What do people think
    about this, what are they going to do, are they getting any help
    from anyone?

    Bruce Palmer

    Leavenworth High School



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--
Terry J. Tinich
Chemistry/Physics Instructor
Pomona High School
Pomona, KS  66067



------------------------------

Subject: [KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce
Date: Wed, 6 Dec 2006 07:49:03 -0600
From: "Cline, Brad" <bcline@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Here is an interesting side note in the AP Audit manual for Chemistry.
I have copied this out verbatim.




"The AP Program has embarked on an ambitious effort, funded by the
National Science Foundation to align the AP Chemistry coursed and exam
with introductory courses that research identifies as best facilitation
deep learning.  The AP Program is concerned that the amount of content
included on the AP Chemistry Exam is putting inappropriate pressure on
teachers to sacrifice depth of study to breadth of coverage, and is not
sufficiently fostering inquiry-based science learning.  We anticipate
that changes will be announced in 2007 but not implemented until, at
earliest, the May 2010 AP Chemistry Exam, providing several years for
raising awareness and building an understanding of these changes before
they are implemented."



I guess all the concerns teachers have voiced over the years might be
paying off.



The truth is, I never teach to an exam... right now we have to give the
ACS exam for Wichita State University in our concurrent enrollment
course (Chemistry II).  My students did pretty well on the ACS exam last
spring and their was an underlying comment from a person at WSU implying
that I must teach to the test.  I didn't and it would have been rather
difficult to teach to the exam since last year was the first time I had
ever given the exam and up to the night before I gave it, I had never
seen it.  I simply teach Chemistry.  I do have the freedom to experiment
different approaches and try different types of lab work.  As long as
the students do learn the subjects with depth (not breadth), they will
be able to figure out most of the things being asked on the exams.  I
found many aspects of the ACS test (minus the free response questions)
to be similar to AP.  It is divided into one semester and I agree that
maybe AP should consider splitting Chemistry into two separate tests as
ACS did on their tests.  Maybe they should split to an AP Chemistry A
and AP Chemistry B to cover Gen. Chem I and II separately like you would
do at the college level.



------------------------------

From: "Kelly Deters" <kellymdeters@xxxxxxxxx>
Subject: [KACT] Giving Finals
Date: Wed, 6 Dec 2006 08:03:54 -0600

My mom teaches upper level biochem at the University of Central Florida and
she's not giving finals in any of her 3 courses this semester--she says
she's given them 5 tests already and the semesters that she's given them a
final exam it doesn't really affect their grade at the end of the semester
as some assume that it does--most students' letter grades didn't change (I
see that in my own courses as well--students, with a few exceptions, are
remarkably consistent in grades).

I personally would prefer a cumulative performance/authentic assessment that
integrates understanding from the semester rather than a typical
multiple-choice exam that I'm required to give on the last day...but what
does a mere teacher know that could possibly be better than administration?

Kelly

-----Original Message-----
From: kact-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:kact-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf
Of Terry Tinich
Sent: Wednesday, December 06, 2006 7:45 AM
To: kact@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [KACT] Re: AP Audits from Bruce

Sorry to say but many colleges are NOT having semester finals but just
another exam (this is in many classes not just chem). We say we are
prepping kids for college but themn they come home saying they never had
a final. Confusing!



------------------------------

End of kact Digest V2 #67
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