Hoboken High School Implements AP Capstone Program

Hoboken High School Implements AP Capstone Program
Hoboken High School is now one of approximately 1,500 schools worldwide to implement the AP Capstone™ diploma program―an innovative program that allows students to develop skills that matter most for college success, such as research, collaboration, and communication. The program consists of two courses taken in sequence: AP® Seminar and AP Research. Developed in direct response to feedback from higher education faculty and college admission officers, AP Capstone complements the in-depth, subject-specific study of other Advanced Placement® courses and exams.

Based upon this established and rigorous program, Hoboken High School students who earn scores of 3 or higher on AP Seminar and AP Research assessments and on four additional AP Exams of their choosing will earn the AP Capstone Diploma™. This signifies their outstanding academic achievement and attainment of college-level academic and research skills. Hoboken High School students who earn scores of 3 or higher on both AP Seminar and AP Research assessments only (but not on four additional AP Exams) will earn the AP Seminar and Research Certificate™.

Assistant Superintendent of Schools, Mr. Gerald Fitzhugh, II commented on what the AP Capstone Program means for Hoboken High School saying, “We rewrote and revised course outlines and have introduced an array of new classes. The AP Capstone Program contributes to our already dynamic high school program.”

The AP Seminar course, typically taken in 10th or 11th grade, equips students with the ability to look at academic or real-world issues from multiple perspectives. Through a variety of materials—articles to research studies to foundational and philosophical texts—students tackle complex questions; understand and evaluate opposing viewpoints; interpret and synthesize information; and construct, communicate, and defend evidence-based arguments. Teachers have flexibility to cover local, regional, national, and global topics relevant to their students, around themes such as education, innovation, sustainability, and technology. Students are assessed through a team project and presentation, an individual project and presentation, and an end-of-course written exam. By tapping into students’ personal interests, AP Capstone gives students from a wide range of backgrounds an entry point into stimulating coursework.

In the subsequent AP Research course, students design, plan, and conduct a yearlong research-based investigation on a topic of individual interest, documenting their process with a portfolio. Students build on skills developed in the AP Seminar course by learning how to understand research methodology; employ ethical research practices; and collect, analyze, and synthesize information to build, present, and defend an argument.

Robin Piccapietra, Hoboken High School Principal summed it up best saying, “The AP Capstone Program is a wonderful addition to our already rich, yet still growing program of studies. We are delivering on our promise to bring relevant and rigorous courses to our students.”
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