College Board Pilots Two New AP Classes


Eshelle Zeeshan, Staff Writer

The College Board has recently announced that it will be piloting two new AP classes: AP African American Studies and AP Precalculus. Teachers and colleges have been working to perfect these classes for over a decade, but they are now set to release in the 2023-2024 school year. These courses will allow high school students to broaden their knowledge of overshadowed history and assist in preparation for other math classes. 


AP African American Studies 

The College Board says AP African American Studies is meant to “offer high school students an evidence-based introduction to African American studies.” The class will help expand students’ knowledge on underrepresented history and serve as the broadest course on the subject for high school students. The decision to pilot this course was influenced by the death of George Floyd in May 2022 and the following protests that emerged. The course is expected to be a helpful and exciting opportunity for students, and there is much optimism associated with its piloting. 

The course is going to cover civil rights and politics, but also dives into the history of African American literature, arts and humanities, culture, and Black contributions to science, geography, and political science. Colleges and universities have worked hard alongside the College Board to develop its curriculum. 

During the 2022-2023 school year, 60 schools across the country piloted this course. In 2023-2024, it will be piloted to hundreds of other schools across the country with students taking the AP African American Studies Exams in the spring of 2024. In 2024-2025, all schools are available to offer the course and the spring 2025 exam will be available for all students who wish to take it. 


AP Precalculus

The goal of AP Precalculus is to explore everyday situations utilizing mathematical tools and lenses, and it will have a focus on mastering modeling and functions. The course was designed for students who have taken a Geometry or Algebra II course. Taking it is meant to prepare students who will be in AP Calculus or take calculus in college. It is geared towards those interested in STEM majors or careers, but is beneficial for students who are interested in non-STEM majors as well. 

Alongside STEM careers, AP Calculus is recommended for students interested in mathematics, physics, biology, health science, social science, and data science fields. The course curriculum was designed to cover polynomial and rational functions, exponential and logarithmic functions, trigonometric and polar functions and functions involving parameters, and vectors and matrices as well. 

The implementation of these new courses is a great opportunity for high school students and is certainly sparking lots of excitement among educators around America. The College Board takes a step forwards in battling against the issue of underrepresentation for African Americans and provides an important tool for gaining insight into history that is often overlooked. AP Precalculus will help students in their preparation for future calculus courses. Once released, it’s recommended to check them out!