As you're probably well aware, this past summer the College Board released a new Course and Exam Description (CED) for AP Stats. For the first semester, the changes have been minimal. We've been updating and supplementing materials here and there (like adding mosaic plots, nonlinear two-variable data,and systematic random sampling) but nothing has been a big change. The most notable change is the suggested sequence for teaching topics in the second semester (sampling distributions and inference).
Now we are entering second semester and stuff's about to get wild! Well, wild to an AP Stats teacher that is.
For as long as we've been teaching AP Stats, we've taught the using following sequence:
Sampling Distributions for One Sample Proportions and Means (Chapter 7 of TPS 5e, 6e)
Confidence Intervals for One Sample Proportions and Means (Chapter 8 of TPS 5e, 6e)
Significance Tests for One Sample Proportions and Means (Chapter 9 of TPS 5e, 6e)
Sampling Distributions, Confidence Intervals, and Significance tests for Two Samples (Chapter 10 of TPS 5e, 6e)
The CED instead recommends teaching all the procedures for proportions first and THEN teaching all the procedures for means. So now we will be using the updated sequence:
Sampling Distributions for ONE AND TWO Sample Proportions and Means (Unit 5 of CED)
Inference for Proportions: Confidence Intervals and Significance Tests for One and Two Samples (Unit 6 of CED)
Inference for Means: Confidence Intervals and Significance Tests for One and Two Samples (Unit 7 of CED)
There's nothing wrong with the old sequence, so why are we making these changes?
Honestly, because why not? We're always trying to improve our teaching, and when we teach the same way for too many years, things can start to get stale. We've never felt like we had all the answers for how to teach AP Statistics perfectly. Maybe this new sequence is a better way to teach statistics. There are some pretty smart people at the College Board after all. This gives us a chance to try out something new and to update lessons. We're excited to see if this new order will help students' understanding.
Additionally, the AP Classroom Personal Progress Checks are aligned to this new order of topics so we will be able to use those.
So what's next?
Before we start teaching each chapter, we will post and email out the new and updated lessons that we will be using for the chapter. So keep an eye on our blog and your email! Make sure to always get the most up-to-date lessons by downloading each from the appropriate lesson page. But fear not, we will leave all of the old lessons posted as well for those of you who will not be making this change this year.
We'll let you know how it goes!