Preparing Students for Advanced Placement Calculus AB
AP 507.200 Gail Kaplan
This session will help teachers to effectively teach an AP Calculus AB course and
prepare their students for success on the AP exam. Participants will review the content,
themes, and structure of the AP Calculus AB curriculum and focus on effective teaching
strategies and learning activities that will lead to their students' success on the
exam. Calculus AB is primarily concerned with developing the students’ understanding
of the concepts of calculus and providing experience with its methods and applications.
The course emphasizes a multi-representational approach to calculus, with concepts,
results, and problems being expressed graphically, numerically, analytically, and
verbally. Using the unifying themes of derivatives, integrals, limits, approximation,
and applications and modeling, the course becomes a cohesive whole. In 2016 – 2017,
the College Board revised the AP Calculus AB curriculum and in 2018-2019 provided
an updated handbook to use in the APSIs. This course will provide information and
strategies to help teachers prepare their students to gain understanding from discovery
type projects and, hopefully, to perform well on the redesigned examination.
Dr. Gail Kaplan is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics at Towson University. Her primary research interest is the development and dissemination of active approaches to learning mathematics. She has published a variety of articles in the use of student-centered projects in secondary mathematics classroom. Dr. Kaplan is nationally active in mathematics education. She has served on the National College Board Academic Assembly, Middle States Advisory Council of the College Board, has been an AP reader in calculus almost 20 years including leadership roles as a table leader and a member of a question team. Dr. Kaplan has provided workshops for teachers in the United States and Europe. As a College Board consultant Dr. Kaplan has trained many teachers in both one day and weeklong workshops. In the middle of her career, Dr. Kaplan taught for a decade at the high school level where her students earned extraordinary scores on their national AP Calculus examinations. During that time she was awarded a Presidential Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics for her work in the secondary classroom as well as an award from the Maryland Senate in honor of her efforts to “make a difference in the delivery of mathematical techniques in the classroom." After returning to full time university teaching, her work in the college classroom led to a Maryland Council of Teachers of Mathematics Award for outstanding college mathematics teachers. She shares her passion for innovative, creative teaching by infecting prospective teachers at Towson University and inservice teachers around the world with her delight in mathematics, motivating and inspiring them to draw the best from their students.