News

Davidson College Launches National Collaboration to Expand Educational Access

by Davidson College
Pat Sellers
(l-r) Pat Sellers, Professor of Political Science and Associate Dean for Curriculum, with Bryan Setser, president of 2Revolutions. Sellers is helping spearhead the AP collaboration project for Davidson, and 2Revolutions is consulting on the project.

Davidson College, edX and the College Board announced today a new collaboration to provide Advanced Placement (AP) teachers and their students with access to a suite of online instructional modules to improve educational outcomes in calculus, physics and macroeconomics. National data show that many students struggle to complete such independent, college-level coursework. This new, blended learning model will use exam data to pinpoint challenging concepts in the three disciplines, and then develop and present concept-based resources using the edX platform for teachers and students.

"We are thrilled to join forces with edX and College Board--creative leaders working to expand access to the highest quality education--to provide AP teachers and students with effective, rigorous AP curricula that improves student learning, energizes teachers and exceeds the expectations of highly selective colleges," said Carol Quillen, president of Davidson College. "This project serves as a scalable model within the evolving education landscape as schools, teachers, organizations and families strive to make educational opportunity real for all of our kids."

"High school teachers and students have been using edX courses from the very beginning," said Anant Agarwal, president of edX. "And now, by partnering with Davidson College and the College Board, we will be providing Advanced Placement course modules designed specifically for their needs and believe that both students and teachers will embrace these new resources."

Using the edX learning platform and its tools, the new collaboration will develop online curricular units that are creative, rigorous and adaptable to different classroom contexts. The units will enable students and teachers to address challenging concepts in AP high school courses by blending online learning with classroom discussion and practice.

Guiding the development of content will be Davidson faculty who have written and graded AP exams, led AP summer workshops for high school teachers and teach in these core subjects. The faculty also will work with high school AP instructors, who will help to produce and evaluate the content, along with edX technologists and experts from College Board's test development committees, who will support development of the curricula to incorporate online and blended components.

Davidson will develop the units over the 2013-2014 academic year, pilot them in collaboration with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, and then make them more widely available online through the edX platform and the AP Central website.

Media Coverage

The new partnership has garnered coverage in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Inside Higher Education.