Test prep tips? Please share!


Hi all! My name is Sarah Fairweather, and I recently joined the Code.org team as the teacher program development manager. I’m helping Brook compile a list of test prep tips for CSP teachers to start integrating into their classroom practices in the months leading up to the AP exam. Do you have examples of ways you’ve helped students become familiar with different styles of test questions and how to approach them? Or strategies to reduce students’ anxieties about tests in general? These don’t need to be CSP specific - just best practices for helping students be prepared, calm, and confident in testing situations. Please share!


It is helpful to model how to answer the different style of test questions and practice answering them as a pair of students, group or entire class.

On writing pieces - teaching students how to use sentence stems as they write to help them learn how to write strong sentences.


Thanks Nicole! We’ll add this to our list.


It would be cool if we could see per question results for our students. Perhaps even how our students did on test questions vs how all students did. This might help guide review.

I need to put together a midterm for mid Jan. Has anyone else created a test that covers Units 1-3 (and maybe 4)?


just to clarify (and in case anyone else is curious about this as well) – under the ‘assessments’ tab of your teacher dashboard:

you will find assessment summaries as well as “all assessment answers” further down on the page. these are both exportable in CSV format!

BUT, there’s no way to compare a section to other section :frowning: sorry caroline!


Has anyone responded to you regarding the midterm you were looking to create, or did you create one you can share? I need to do the same, for late January.


At semester, I am having my students write AVID “focus notes” on each vocabulary word by chapters. They have to come up with their own essential questions, question containing each vocabulary word and complete response from student & response from research in a T chart. Students write first what they think they know; then second what information they gathered from researching past lessons or the internet. We plan to use these notes as our base for studying for AP Exam.


The Internet (Unit 1 vocabulary)

Data Compression (Unit 2 - Chap. 1 vocabulary)
Data (Unit 2 - Chap. 2 vocabulary)

Intro to Programming (Unit 3 - vocabulary)

Link to sample semester final for CSP - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RAfjTJl3-qsQvBEjK8L4s6hLs2BQWItktAgN9Zsipf4/edit?usp=sharing

More info on AVID focus notes: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/130dAfFojCLt9vhbm0q4eUl3c_HF8tx7TdSk-41DtB0o/edit?usp=sharing


Thanks for sharing. Will look to see how I can intergrate in my class.


For the Explore task, I am having students do a “practice” explore task in class and then present out what they learned about the process. Then they will pick a different innovation and do the real explore task. I am hoping that students will be able to generate ideas from their peers and then pick a new topic pretty easily.

I am using this research template since I noticed that students are having trouble organizing their research.


I had students make a codehs.com account to access the practice test today. It actually worked out really well. My students did all of the code.org practice questions, but still wanted more - writing these are… challenging… so I had students use codeHS with a partner and they could google/use notes to help them review.


How can I get my students to be able to see the CSP culminating assessment that you all created?
I think it’s from the 15-16 curriculum? I can see it in my dashboard but students can’t find it in code studio and i don’t know how to link them to it


All the assessments have been rolled into the units. There isn’t one global test prep assessment for the AP exam.


Was this free? I have seen these quizzes and they look great. I just don’t want to get going on this and find out that we are locked out. Is this the right site? https://codehs.com/info/curriculum/apcsp_review


The CollegeBoard AP CSP Sample Questions start at page 83 of https://secure-media.collegeboard.org/digitalServices/pdf/ap/ap-computer-science-principles-course-and-exam-description.pdf

As mentioned below, codehs has a very nice set of quizzes at https://codehs.com/info/curriculum/apcsp_review

I was using albert.io as well, but it costs money. There were tons of questions, though.

It would be really nice if code.org, my curriculum of choice, would expand Unit 6 to include Exam study materials – even a lesson that included links to some of the free materials referenced above. This would put the whole AP final process in perspective and let me avoid making my own Sway or handouts. It would be even better if you developed your own test review questions – but that may not be necessary as long as codehs leaves theirs open.


@nicholsonl check out this document from a call last week too: https://docs.google.com/document/d/10hFNN_5gwBLLOZZNIeWrqq_E1sZZin0VVgA6AI5Mjo4/edit#


I have the exact same concern about codehs.com. Were you able to assign students the practice problems for free?

I made an account with codehs.com and with alberto.io but got stumped when it came to assigning the practice questions to my students for free. It felt like I kept running into “you must pay” screens to proceed.

I would appreciate if code.org remixed their assessment questions so that students could do more practice and get immediate feedback. And agree putting a review at the end of unit 6 would be helpful.

@kaitie_o_bryan Thanks for sharing the google document.


hey folks! i wanted to share some background on why we’re not creating a a dedicated practice test this year, and also share some additional resources you might consider looking at.

first, to the point about us creating more AP prep resources-- this is on the top of our list going into next year. until we see the real test, it’s hard to feel like we’ve got a good enough sense of how the learning objectives will translate to questions to develop a practice test that we’re confident in. going into next year we’ll be incorporating more sample problems along with ideas and supports for integrating preparation for the exam over the whole year.

in the meantime, the resources shared here are great for you to leverage. also check out this review quiz from the folks over at mobile CSP, which looks to have a number of questions from the course and exam description (or, the purple book) as well as some vocabulary review.

don’t forget that you got a full sample test as part of your AP audit, which is available when you’re signed in on the college board portal. and, of course, you can always look back at the chapter assessment questions from past units (i promise students don’t remember how they answered a question from unit 1 :slight_smile: ) as well as the AP-style programming questions that are all in pseudocode, available at the end of unit 5.


I was able to set up classes and allow students to join them in codehs.com today despite not paying anything. I have a teacher account and set up classes with AP CSP. I was given section numbers. Students were then able to create an account and get set up using the section code. Without the section code, they couldn’t get to the materials. Once in, we could use a 74 question review prep.

Albert.io costs money to get beyond a few introductory question – as I recall anyway. We paid for a subscription for this year. I am not sure we will continue it next year because so many of the questions have the smallest subtle differences between the abcd choices.

We wouldn’t be doing any of this, of course, if code.org would do the remix you suggested – or create their own exam prep. I don’t think they realize what a big part of the success of the AP CSP course the AP Exam is?


Points well made!

Thank you for the Mobile CSP link.

We will be using the full sample test during class.

Opening each section of the code.org assessments may be a little cumbersome, but I’ll give it a try.


My school purchased albert.io licenses and students are using them. Many of the questions are very rigorous and tedious, almost for the sake of being tedious. I guess one could argue that if a student can do those questions, the exam should be a piece of cake? Just something to think about if wanting to purchase for next year.