A new perspective on College Board’s AP Precalculus

by Jake Kwon ‘26

Recently, The College Board announced that Advanced Placement (AP) Pre-Calculus would be a course offered to students in the 2023-2024 school year.

According to the College Board, the course is designed to develop an extensive understanding of modeling and functions, and to learn more about dynamic systems. Additionally, the course is also designed to prepare high school students for more challenging mathematics and science courses at the college level.

Not to mention, the course is specifically catered to help students prepare for STEM majors and for following courses such as AP Calculus AB and AP Calculus BC. This is not a far stretch consider last year, the College Board reported that nearly 119,000 students received a score of 1 or 2 on AP Calculus AB Exams.

The Barron’s AP Precalculus Preparation Book

Now, here’s the question that we all are asking ourselves: will the course be coming to Bellarmine anytime soon? With Precalculus and Precalculus Honors already being provided to students, Mrs. Zabinski, who teaches AP Calculus AB and BC believes that Precalculus Honors and AP Precalculus overlap in many ways, and that some of the additional topics included in the AP course, such as conic sections, matrices, and vector-valued functions, for now, will not be on the AP exam. So no, the course will not be in Bellarmine classrooms in the foreseeable future.

When asked about the AP course being a good fit for Bellarmine students, Mrs. Zabinski stated that she believes that the number of AP math classes provided at the school is “sufficient,” and that Precalculus and Precalculus Honors already help prepare students entering AP Calculus AB and AP Calculus BC. Furthermore, she states that she doesn’t see herself teaching this course and hopes to continue teaching AB and BC.

Regardless of whether or not AP Precalculus will be provided here at Bellarmine ever, it is interesting to see that the College Board is implementing new courses year after year. There are many ways in which this course can go, but we will definitely learn more as the course is implemented in other schools during the 2023-2024 school year. And with AP exams coming up, we wish all students the best of luck on their tests! Happy testing Bells!

Do you intend to take AP math courses at Bellarmine?

Jake Kwon is a staff writer for the Bell Online. He enjoys playing soccer with friends and covering events on campus.

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