AP Physics C: Mechanics: Curricular Requirements

  • The teacher has read the most recent AP Physics Course Description.
  • The course covers Newtonian mechanics in depth and provides instruction in each of the following six content areas outlined in the Course Description:
    • Kinematics
    • Newton's laws of motion
    • Work, energy, and power
    • Systems of particles, linear momentum
    • Circular motion and rotation
    • Oscillations and gravitation
  • The course utilizes guided inquiry and student-centered learning to foster the development of critical thinking skills.
  • Introductory differential and integral calculus is used throughout the course.
  • The course includes a laboratory component comparable to a semester-long, college-level physics laboratory. Students spend a minimum of 20% of instructional time engaged in laboratory work. A hands-on laboratory component is required. Each student should complete a lab notebook or portfolio of lab reports. Note: Online course providers utilizing virtual labs (simulations rather than hands-on) should submit their laboratory materials for the audit. If these lab materials are determined to develop the skills and learning objectives of hands-on labs, then courses which use these labs may receive authorization to use the "AP" designation.*

Resource Requirements

  • The school ensures that each student has a calculus based college-level physics textbook (supplemented when necessary to meet the curricular requirements) for individual use inside and outside of the classroom.
  • The school ensures that students have access to scientific equipment and all necessary materials for students to conduct hands-on, college-level physics laboratory investigations as outlined in the teacher's course syllabus.

* This requirement was revised on July 13, 2006.

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