Course Syllabus

AP CS Principles

 Mrs. Patti Griffin ~ Room 117

Course Syllabus



Phone: 704-296-3088

Planning: 2nd block

Tutoring Hours: Fridays 10:00 in MS Teams 

Office Hours: Fridays 9 am - 12 noon

From the College Board, "AP Computer Science Principles introduces students to the breadth of the field of computer science. In this course, students will learn to design and evaluate solutions and to apply computer science to solve problems through the development of algorithms and programs. They will incorporate abstraction into programs and use data to discover new knowledge. Students will also explain how computing innovations and computing systems, including the Internet, work, explore their potential impacts, and contribute to a computing culture that is collaborative and ethical."

Students will be using the college level Beauty and Joy of Computing online textbook; developed by University of California, Berkley, AP curriculum, and

 Course Outline

Big Idea 1: Creative Development

Students will learn how computing innovations are improved through collaboration.  They will learn how a program or block of code functions, identify forms of input and output, and how to identify and correct errors.

Big Idea 2: Data           

Students will learn how data can be represented by using bits and compare data compression algorithms.  They will learn about extracting information from data using programs.

Big Idea 3: Algorithms and Programming

Students will learn how to work with various data types (variables, strings, Boolean expressions, and lists) to abstract data.  They will also explore mathematical expressions, conditionals, calling and developing procedures, and iterations in correlation to developing algorithms.          

Big Idea 4: Computer Systems and Networks

Students will understand how computing systems work in regards to the internet and networks.  They will also learn how information is transmitted and safeguards that have been put into place to prevent this system from breaking down.

Big Idea 5: Impact of Computing

Students will explore the legal and ethical issues that arise from the programmer’s standpoint.  They will learn the risk and vulnerability of technology, and safe computing with using personal data in a computer system.                           



30% ~ Class Participation ~ During teacher instruction, students are expected to participate by volunteering or when their name is called.  Each week, students will start out with an individual 100 weekly participation grade.  The following will result in a 10-point deduction: (1) not responding/participating in Teams when called and (2) any zero’s for work not completed for the week.

 30% ~ Homework & Classwork ~ Class Work may include in coding assignments, group work, worksheets, videos in AP Classroom, or other assignments aimed at providing extra practice and reinforcement of the ideas covered in class.

 40% ~ Section Quizzes, Projects, & Tests ~ Final Exam is 25% of course grade.  This will be a “teacher created” exam. 

The AP Exam, which is May 13th, 2021, will not count in PowerSchool.

 All work is expected by its due date which is posted on Canvas with the assignment.  NO LATE WORK will be accepted after the following Monday (9 am) from the due date.  Work turned in late will result in a 10-point penalty.  It is the student’s responsibility to email the teacher when late work is completed.

Report Cards go home every 6 weeks and there will NOT be any printed Progress Reports. Canvas & is used to grade assignments as well, however, the grades in these platforms, while accurate to that assignment, are NOT the teacher’s gradebook. The teacher’s gradebook includes categories of assignments that may be weighted differently and may include grades for assignments that did not use the Canvas Learning Platform. Therefore, students and parents should always check their child’s true average on the Parent Portal on PowerSchool.


Internet Policy

Students will use the school network and Internet on a daily basis to access instructional websites and project resources. All students are expected to abide by the UCPS Acceptable Use policy (page 62 of the UCPS High School handbook) when using the school network. The streaming of audio and/or video, playing games on the computer without permission, the use of chat rooms, social media, YouTube, instant messenger, email, proxy servers or using the Internet for non-educational purposes is prohibited (page 75 of the UCPS High School handbook). Violations will result in disciplinary action.


Work Ethic

Work Ethic is a set of values based on character and hard work.  Now is the time to develop these skills, such as honesty & integrity, attendance & punctuality, productivity, attitude, appearance, organizational skills, and team work.  Please make good choices and refresh yourself with the Honor Code in the UCPS High School Handbook (page 39).  Cheating and plagiarism will not be tolerated.  “Winners never cheat and cheaters never win” ~ Jon M. Huntsman Sr.


Classroom Procedures & Expectations

Entering Classroom

1.     Enter through designated door & sit at your assigned student desk/computer. 

2.     Clean your desk/computer, wipes provided.  You may go wash hands or use hand sanitizer.

3.     Log in computer & go to my Canvas page.


All students are expected to be in Microsoft Teams at 9:05 for morning announcements & attendance.  Students are expected to remain in meeting during teacher instruction and may not leave until the teacher has dismissed them. 

If at any time the teacher calls on a student in Teams (verbally or in comments) and the student does not respond, the student will be marked absent and will receive a 10 pt deduction from the weekly participation grade.


1.     Always read instructions before asking for help.

2.     When using Microsoft Teams (virtual) use the raise hand option or chat your question.

3.      Email teacher.

TEAM Attitude

In my classroom, we are family; we talk to each other, compliment & encourage each other, and help each other (alot). 

Classroom Computers

*All computers are the property of UCPS; therefore, you are expected to use proper care.

1.     Use only the equipment assigned to you.

2.     Leave computer settings alone, they are not to be changed.

3.     Handle equipment with extreme care, you may be held responsible for repairs.

4.     Check your computer at the beginning of class and let me know immediately if something is missing or not working.

5.     Intentionally damaging or causing disruptions with equipment will result in disciplinary actions. 


Earbuds/headphones for class.  I do have sets that can be used.  You will be responsible for cleaning & returning them to the cabinet.

Leaving the Classroom

Bathroom – ask & go, no pass.

Office – ask for pass & follow hall directions.



Students cheating will receive a 0 on the assignment(s) with no option to redo.  Parents will be contacted and will result in an office referral (if cheating on test or exam).

Missed Work

1.     Each student is responsible for getting missed assignments when absent, which will be on Canvas.

2.     All work is due before class the next day; any work after that will receive a 10 pt deduction for late penalty (unless student emails teacher for extension). 

3.     NO WORK ACCEPTED will be accepted after the following Monday (9 am) from the due date.  Work turned in late will result in a 10-point penalty.  It is the student’s responsibility to email the teacher when late work is completed.

4.     Missed tests/quizzes must be rescheduled within 2 school days by emailing teacher.

5.     Daily assignments are posted on the class Canvas page and in the classroom.

6.     Students are responsible for emailing teacher for extension.

End of Class

1.     Please clean up your area & push your chair in.

2.     Remain at your desk until the bell rings.

3.     Please use designated door to leave classroom & follow hall direction.

Fire Drills, Tornado Drills, Lockdowns

1.     Follow the teacher’s instructions and take all safety drills seriously.

2.     Fire drill - exit to the front of the school, follow the sidewalk to the right and go to the far side of teacher parking lot and remain with your class.

3.     Tornado drill – kneel down facing the wall in the hallway just outside the classroom.

4.     Lockdown – sit in the front of the classroom and remain completely silent.  If you sit near a window, please close blinds.

CANVAS Classroom Online-Learning Platform & Resources

1.     All work will be posted in Canvas; including assignments, tests, quizzes, and announcements:

2.     Check due dates. It is the responsibility of each student to submit work on time.

3.     Canvas logs every student submission with a date and time.

4.     Grades in canvas reflect only the specific assignment grade and are NOT the teacher’s gradebook. Check the Parent Portal on PowerSchool for student’s true grade for each course.

5.     Link to Student Guide for Canvas questions: 

6.     Link to EmpowerEd Family Portal:



Course Summary:

Date Details Due