• Description

The call for college and career readiness pervades state and federal policy initiatives, reflecting agrowing sense that an increasing number of high school graduates are underprepared for the demandsof postsecondary education. Despite the push for high, common standards, high school students engage invery different curricula in terms of both content and rigor. Advanced Placement (AP) coursework offers highschool students more intense academic training, consisting of a series of college-level courses and assessments. Completing AP coursework may give students valuable experience, and college credit is often earned throughsuccess on end-of-year examinations. This brief assesses trends in access to, enrollment in, and success in APcoursework (see Box 1 on page 2) in relation to school district poverty, racial composition, and urbanicity (seeBox 2 on page 4). It uses data merged from the 2011– 2012 Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC), the 2012 Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE), and the 2010 Decennial U.S. Census. These data reflect APaccess, enrollment, and success only at the district level. Consequently, it is not possible to draw conclusionsabout individual students or school-level trends from this analysis. Note that when examining AP enrollmentand success, we consider only those districts that offer some access to AP coursework.