Honors & AP - Ursuline High School

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Honors & Advanced Placement

Ursuline High School offers an extensive Honors and Advanced Placement (AP) program as part of our college preparatory curriculum. The purpose of the program is to challenge those students who are academically gifted and to encourage them to share the gifts they have received with others. Students enjoy the challenge offered through an honors or AP course, while faculty find that AP courses enhance their students’ confidence, academic interest, and achievement. Those students enrolled in an AP course are actually taking college-level courses that could lead to college credit. All courses contribute significantly to student success on the ACT or SAT and in college. Due to the increased challenges of an honors/AP course student grades are weighted on a 5-point scale, as opposed to the traditional 4-point scale. For example, an A is worth 5 points instead of 4 when calculating a student’s grade point average.

Ursuline High School has a rich tradition of success in regards to Advanced Placement (AP) testing. Ursuline students earned an 84% pass rate on the May 2023 test administration in comparison to the 61% global pass rate. 41% of graduates passed an AP exam. 22 members of the class were named AP Scholars. 2 students earned the prestigious AP Diploma. 

English Department

The English Department offers an honors course at every level. Students who demonstrate superior skills in reading comprehension, language use, vocabulary, and composition are invited into the English honors program. Students who then demonstrate success in their freshmen, sophomore, and junior honors classes will be placed in Advanced Placement Literature and Composition during their senior year and are eligible for college credit after successful completion of the Advanced Placement test. English classes help students to develop reading comprehension, critical thinking and writing skills. The honors curriculum in English requires summer reading.

AP Courses offered:

  • Honors English 9
  • Honors English 10
  • Honors English 11
  • AP Literature & Composition

Math Department

The Math Department at Ursuline offers an extensive honors curriculum. Students who score high on the eighth grade placement test enroll in Honors Algebra I. Honors Geometry and Honors Algebra II and Trigonometry follow the introductory honors math course. During the senior year students can then take AP Calculus in preparation for the AP exam or college entrance exams. Juniors and seniors also have the opportunity to take AP Computer Science Principles, an introductory course in the programming, coding, and basics of computer programming.

AP Courses offered:

  • Honors Algebra I
  • Honors Geometry
  • AP Pre-Calculus
  • AP Calculus
  • AP Computer Science Principles

Science Department

For students who have a strong interest in, or plan for a career in science and meet the subject requirements, the Science Department offers the following courses: Honors Biology I, Honors Chemistry, Honors Anatomy, AP Biology, and AP Chemistry. Both AP courses contribute significantly to student achievement in college, even when students forego the actual AP exam. All courses include extensive lab work.

AP Courses offered:

  • Honors Biology I
  • Honors Chemistry
  • Honors Anatomy
  • AP Biology
  • AP Chemistry

Social Studies Department

AP U.S. Government is offered to juniors with a high level of motivation and ability. For students with an interest in history, AP U.S. History is offered. The one semester review class can be taken as a junior or senior after students complete the normal U.S. History curriculum as sophomores. AP Psychology is a one one credit course that studies the human brain and behavior. This course is open to juniors and seniors. AP U.S. Government is taken in place of the required government courses during the junior year. These classes require students to use content knowledge for critical analysis, as well as extensive writing assignments.

AP Courses offered:

  • AP U.S. History
  • AP U.S. Government
  • AP Psychology

Global Languages

The Global Languages Department offers two successful honors programs. Students who demonstrate success in their entry year of Spanish or French are then invited into the honors track. Both programs culminate with an AP class during the fourth year. AP Spanish and AP French allow students to take the AP exam to earn college credit or test out of foreign language requirements during college entrance examinations.

AP Courses offered:

  • AP Spanish III
  • AP Spanish IV
  • AP French III
  • AP French IV

Fine & Performing Arts Department

The Fine and Performing Arts Department offers two Advanced Placement programs, AP Studio Art – Drawing and AP Studio Art – 2D Art and Design.  These are rigorous college level studio courses offered to highly motivated seniors who have taken Art I, II, III, and IV.  Coursework is designed to build mastery in technique, composition/design, research, experimentation, and creative problem solving.  Critical thinking, objective analysis of artwork, and the ability to communicate in the language of art will be developed throughout the course.  Students must be willing to devote several hours per week of outside time to art production, research, and self-improvement.  Maintaining an active art journal/sketchbook is a critical course requirement.  The “exam portfolio” requires at least 24 high quality artworks to be completed and submitted to the College Board in May.  Students will declare their choice of portfolio early in the year, 2D or Drawing, and work in and out of the classroom fulfilling the requirements.

AP Courses offered:

  • AP Studio Art – 2D Art and Design
  • AP Studio Art – Drawing

Cross Curricular

AP Capstone is an innovative diploma program from the College Board that equips students with the independent research, collaborative teamwork, and communication skills that are increasingly valued by colleges. AP Capstone is built on the foundation of two AP courses, AP Seminar and AP Research, and is designed to compliment and enhance the in-depth, discipline specific study experienced in other AP courses. In AP Seminar, students investigate real-world issues from multiple perspectives, gathering and analyzing information from various sources in order to develop credible and valid evidence based arguments. In AP Research, students cultivate the skills and discipline necessary to conduct independent research in order to produce and defend a scholarly academic paper. Students who earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research and on four additional AP exams of their choosing will receive the AP Capstone Diploma. Students who earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research and not four additional AP tests will receive the AP Seminar and Research Certificate.

AP Courses offered:

  • AP Seminar
  • AP Research

Dual Credit Programs AP Courses offered:

  • Biology
  • Calculus
  • Physics

Online AP Programs offered:

  • Art History
  • Calculus BC
  • English Language
  • Environmental Science
  • Macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics
  • Statistics
  • World History

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