Physics AP (Level B) Curriculum Change:
The current Physics AP (level B) curriculum from the College Board is scheduled to change with the 2014-1015 school year, though this change has been held several times already. The College Board curriculum for Physics AP (level B) is designed to be equal to a freshman college level or (100 level) algebra based Physics course. Physics AP (level B) has a strong correlation to state of North Carolina Physics curriculum goals, currently covering a wide range of topics. The current curriclum requires only one AP Test. Changes to the Physics AP (level B) curriculum will require students to take and pass 2 separate Physics AP exams, as Physics AP (level B) will become known as Physics APB-1 and Physics APB-2. Unlike Calculus AB and BC that contain overlapping curriculum, each of the tests will contain completely separate material, while APB-1 will contain information necessary for the completion of APB-2. Both tests will be given at separate times, perferably separate days during the first two weks of May. What was a one year long course will essence become a two year course, though I and many others believe the material can be covered in 3 (Spring, Fall, Spring) rather than 4 semesters. As soon as changes occur, school and county wide administrators will need to make difficult decisions regarding the future of AP Physics at TC Roberson and Buncombe County. Finally, while colleges have given between 3 - 10 credits for a score 3, 4, or 5 on the AP exam, there is no knowledge as to how much credit may be given for scores on two tests.
While Physics AP (level B) is scheduled to change, Physics AP (level C) is not scheduled to undergo any changes. Physics AP (level C) is a calculus (200 level) based college sophomore physics course. It has one test for a semester of Mechanics, and one test for a semester of Electricity/Magnetism, both given during the spring testing window. calculus foundation. Topics not covered include but are not limited to: thermodynamics, fluid dynamics, waves, optics (lens, mirrors, difraction gratings), atomic and nuclear physics . All of these are covered in the level B course. The biggest issue in delivering a level C course to students, is that they must already be attempting Calculus or have taken Calculus as a junior. This change from level B to level C would limit the number of students available to register for and complete Physics AP.