It is finally time for students to take on the Explore Performance Task. For a minimum of 8 class hours, students should work on their projects with only types of teacher support allowed (essentially: Advise on process, don’t influence or evaluate ideas). The lesson includes reminders about how you can interact with students while they are working on their projects, and suggestions about time line. The Explore PT requires a minimum of 8 hours of class time. At the end, students will submit their computational artifact and written responses through their AP digital portfolio.


Students will be able to:


There are no new CS concepts covered in this lesson. Students will individually work on the Explore Performance Task.


The students will need the work they completed in the last lessons to complete your Explore Performance Task.

Getting Started


Role of the teacher during Explore task completion: You can help with process, but not evaluate or influence ideas.

The teachers can use these guidelines to help the students to complete the tasks.

Therefore, it is good to remind the students that:

After asking the students to open the "AP CSP Performance Task Directions for Students - College Board Student Handout," ask the students to read page 3 to prepare for the through-course performance tasks.

After reading ask the students, with their partner, to summarize anything new or unexpected that they have discovered.

Now, ask the students to read page 7.

Again, using the divide and conquer method, ask the students to:

The teachers should see if they have missed any steps specifically pertaining to the Explore Performance Task. They should be all checked except the following: 'practice searching and evaluating sources relevant to computing innovations; all sources cited must be relevant, credible, and easily accessible'.

Now, ask the students to read page 2, the Plagarism Policy.

The teachers can reference the following:

Plagiarism Policy

Make sure students understand what's required in terms of citing sources. At the very least they probably want to keep track of links to articles they found during their research process so they can easily include them later on. Use the Survival Guide as a place to do this.

Ask the students to read page 8, which has a final set of Do's, Don'ts, and Reminders for the Explore PT.


The Students Must

The Students May

The Students May NOT

After reviewing the list above, get your timeline out. You are about to start your 8 hours on the Explore Performance Task.


GO! (8 Hours)

Wrap Up

Submitting: At the designated end of the Task administration (having allowed for at least 8 hours of class time for work) students should submit their computational artifacts, and written responses to their AP Digital Portfolio


You (the teachers) may spread out submission over a few days if you like since students can save progress in the AP Digital Portfolio. As long as they finalize submission by the closing date of the PTs it's fine.

Extended Learning (Optional: Review research practices and strategies)

In working through these practice PTs, students have built skills with researching and talking about innovations and creating computational artifacts.


Prompt: In your small groups create a list of best practices for research.

Students should record what they did in earlier projects first, but may choose to look at outside resources to augment their lists. Have groups report out to the whole room their lists of best practices for research. The students can consider using the 'Evaluate Online Resources' guide posted in the resources section above.

Discussion Goals: Students need to know what's required of them in terms of citing sources in the task, as well as getting a reminder about best practices.

Make sure the students' list include:

One of the most frequently asked questions is about how students should cite sources with their Explore PTs. The citations need to be inline citations but you can basically invent any format for doing that that you want. As long as it's clear which information came from where that's the goal. The students can look to the sample PTs in the previous lesson for examples.

Standards Alignment