• Welcome to this year’s 2014-2015 AP Psychology class.  AP Psychology is a yearlong course designed to prepare students to take the Advanced Placement exam in the spring.  It is an introductory survey course that will cover all of the major areas of Psychology.  Students will be introduced to the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and animals.  Topics covered in this course will include: the history of psychology; analysis of psychological research; intelligence, memory, and thinking; the biological basis of behavior; emotions; perception; sensation; motivation; theories of personality; heredity and learning; development psychology; social psychology; abnormal psychology; and states of consciousness.

    AP classes are considered college level classes and will be taught as such. Therefore, the pace of the class will move quickly and there will be a lot of outside class work, perhaps even on weekends and over breaks.

     Policies & Expectations:

    1.     Attendance:  Students are expected to attend class and to be on time.  An unexcused tardy will be given to any student who is late to class.  Disciplinary action for tardies will follow in accordance to Briar Woods High School’s tardy policy. 

    2.     Grading:  Grades will be calculated using a point system, i.e. each assignment (homework, projects, tests, quizzes, etc.) will be assigned a point value.  Grades are updated regularly on Clarity and are based on the Loudoun County Public School’s grading scale.

    3.    Homework:  Students will be given homework assignments, which may include, but are not limited to: textbook reading and notes quizzes, vocabulary identifications, and articles.   

    4.    Late Work: All assignments are expected to be completed and turned in on time.  However, if an assignment is late the grading policy is as follows:

       a.     For tests/quizzes missed for an excused absence/tardy, students are responsible for scheduling a make-up time to be completed within one week upon their return to class.  Failure to do so will result in a grade of 0.  Make up quizzes/tests will be in a different format of the original quiz/test, most likely short answer or essay.

       b.     Homework will be due on the date identified on the BWHS homework calendar.  Homework is to be turned in at the beginning of class in the homework bin.  Homework is considered late once the bell has rung.  Late homework will be accepted for 50% up until the day of the unit test.

     It is the responsibility of the student to ask for make-up work in the event of an excused absence.  

    All assignments, due dates, etc. can be found on my website. Therefore, there is NO excuse for not having an assignment completed, even if you are absent.  Remember, this is a college level course.  My homework calendar can be found at: https://www.lcps.org/Page/67198.  Printable homework handouts, worksheets, study guides, etc. can be found on Vision: http://loudounvision.net.

     In accordance with the Briar Woods High School Honor Code, any student caught copying another student’s homework, project, or other assignment will disciplinary action.  This also includes plagiarizing from the internet on projects, papers, etc.

     5.    Tests/Quizzes:  Students should expect DAILY reading/notes quizzes.  These quizzes will count as the equivalent of a homework grade.  Tests will mimic the AP exam.  The AP exam is a timed, 100 multiple-choice question test with 2 essays.  In order for students to prepare for the AP exam, unit tests will be the same (timed, 100 multiple-choice question tests).  Because there is not enough time to write the essays on the same day as the multiple-choice section, essays will be given another day.  Each unit test WILL contain questions from previous tests.  This will help students prepare for the AP exam at the end of the year.  Students can expect a test about every 2weeks.  Make up quizzes/tests will be in a different format of the original quiz/test, most likely short answer or essay.

    6.     Materials:  Students enrolled in AP Psychology should to maintain a three ring binder for the course.   Included items are notes taken in class, worksheets, vocabulary lists, review sheets and outlines.  Notebooks will not be graded, but are critical for organizational purposes and to maintain class performance.  A Briar Woods planner is given to each student at the beginning of the school year.  It serves as an excellent tool for organization. 

    7.    Cell phonesThroughout the entire year at the beginning of each class, students will place their cell phones in an assigned holder at the front of the class.  They are not allowed to be on the desks. They WILL be confiscated if seen.  CELL PHONE USE FOR MUSIC OR GAMES WILL NOT BE PERMITTED AFTER TESTS AND QUIZZES.  For further information consult the BWHS school handbook.

    Lastly, students who are experiencing academic difficulties are strongly encouraged to meet with me as soon as possible.  It is typical for A/B students to be B/C students and B/C students to be C/D students in AP classes.  There is never a problem that cannot be solved, as long as you are willing to work with me to find a solution. 

    Once again, welcome to class.  If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at 703.957.4400 or e-mail me at amy.oldknow@lcps.org.  I look forward to working with all of you this coming year.