Explore PT Innovation choices



I notice that the specific choice of computing innovation is a monumental part of the Explore PT, as picking an “invalid” innovation can be as dire as to result in a 1/8 score regardless of the quality of their answers.

This sounds fine initially but as I read the “student survival guide” I get a little nervous because the criteria used to decide whether or not something is a computing innovation is overwhelmingly vague! For example, this chart claims that Email is a bad choice for the computing innovation: https://cdo-curriculum.s3.amazonaws.com/media/uploads/image_lPkwa9A.png . Why? Email seems like an excellent choice. It absolutely involves software, it’s certainly an innovation, it’s definitely computational, and it’s not hardware. Furthermore, it has clear benefits and consequences both to society and in terms of data privacy and security. If a student had asked me if this would be a valid option, I’d have responded with a very optimistic “yes”, so seeing this chart makes me weary.

Is there a reliable guideline somewhere that clearly defines what is and is not a valid computing innovation?


@flavkupe - I totally agree with you. I also feel that email is a good choice for a topic and it seems to fit squarely in the definition.

I would look at the definition of “computing innovation” as defined by CollegeBoard (page 41 here).
I would also look at the sample submissions and scoring commentary here about half way down the page. This should give you a good idea of topics that students are submitting and how they are being scored.

  • Mitch