Online Exclusive: AP Seminar prepares for the future

Zara Denison
staff writer

Humanities and Art, is one of this school’s signature programs that promote student interests in studies of art, literature, philosophy, history and world languages. One of the required courses is AP Seminar, a challenging but fun experience.

Michelle Hansen is the director of the program as well as the only current teacher of the class. AP seminar is one of the required enrichment courses for students who are a part of the program. The class teaches writing skills, how to create and give presentations and prepares students for writing research papers. In order to graduate the program all students must pass the AP Seminar and AP Research courses.

Ap Seminar is useful and good preparation for the future.“This is actually a skill based course, so everything the students learn is transferable to other courses and to help students get ready for university level studies,” Hansen said.

Hansen is especially proud of the versatility of the class. “One other huge positive is that the students get to select their own research topics: anything from plastic straws to solitary confinement to music in social protest movements,” Hansen said.

One of the most important aspects of the class are the research skills taught. “Kids learn how to do high level research, develop a line of reasoning and to construct an argument, design and deliver multimedia presentations and to establish the credibility of a piece of writing,” Hansen said.

The students who take the class are diligent learners who are willing to accept the challenge. “It can be stressful at times, but we spend pretty much the whole year getting ready for the exam, so by the time I’ll be taking the exam I’ll definitely be prepared,” sophomore Emma Helgeson said.

Students in AP seminar are interested in working in the humanities and art fields. However, AP seminar is more than just a glorified English class. Students learn skills that go beyond the classroom, and can help them in any future classes or jobs. “The major I am planning to pursue doesn’t involve English requirements, however I think that this class helped me improve my presentation skills as well as my public speaking,” sophomore Madelyn Yi said.

A prominent aspect of the class is creating and giving presentations. “The main takeaway was from the presentations we were required to conduct. Over the course of the year I have enhanced my presentation skills while also getting better at writing synthesis essays,” Yi said.

English, AP Lang and AP Lit teacher Nicholas Hitchens is also going to be teaching the class next year“I think I’m a pretty good fit to teach the class because I’m into that kind of stuff. I like music and writing and strangely enough I really like research,” Hitchens said.

Hitchens has a lot to look forward to next year . “I’m really looking forward to getting to know some of the some students. I know the class is a little less structured so I’m excited about getting to have in depth conversations with students,” Hitchens said.

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