Summer 2013 Course Offerings

Advanced Placement Program* Summer Institute

AP* US History, July 22-25, 2013

Lead Consultant: John Irish 


What to Bring

  • Participants are encouraged to bring favorite books or articles to share (current historical literature).
  • Participants are encouraged to bring successful lessons they have created.

Course Description

This course will cover both the content and pedagogy necessary for teaching the AP* U.S. History course successfully. In addition, participants will receive an overview of the AP* Program and any changes on the horizon.  Approximately 30% of the course will be dedicated to the course and exam redesign, as directed by the College Board. Presentations and discussions of teaching strategies will be divided equally between strategies for improving student success on the AP* Exam and the content necessary to create an engaging and successful course. Teaching strategies will focus on the development of critical thinking skills, document analysis, and writing skills. Historical content will focus on American social, political, economic, and intellectual thought and we will explore the ever-changing interpretations of U.S. History (for a meaningful and on-going discussion of current historical literature, participants are encouraged to bring favorite books or articles to share). Note all content, lessons, and activities for the course in 2013 will be from the second half of the course, Reconstruction to the Present. Participants will also explore classroom resources, including online and multimedia resources. Participants are encouraged to bring successful lessons they have created and share these with the entire group. This AP* U.S. History Summer Institute will create an active learning environment, all participants will be expected to read, write, and actively engage with the material, please come prepared to participate.  

About John Irish

John P. Irish teaches AP* U.S. History and is the UIL Social Studies coach at Carroll Senior High School in Southlake, Texas. He is a nationally certified consultant in AP* U.S. History and AP* European History for the Southwestern Region of the College Board and serves as a reader and table leader for the AP* U.S. History Exam. He serves on the College Board Curriculum Development and Assessment Committee for the redesign of the AP* U.S. History Course and Exam. He just published the Student Guidebook for the 15/e of American Pageant and has published the Instructor Resource Guide and the Testbank for previous editions of that textbook. He was also on the writing team that published a four volume updated edition of the AP* U.S. History Workbooks by the Center for Learning, along with a curriculum unit on Edward Bellamy’s novel “Looking Backward” also by the Center for Learning. Mr. Irish holds a B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy from Southern Methodist University and an M.A. in Philosophy from the University of Arkansas. He has also done post-graduate work in History from Rice University. He is currently working on a Masters Degree from Southern Methodist University with a concentration in Humanities and American Studies. He is a member of the American Historical Association, Society for History Education, and the Organization of American Historians.  

2012 Participant Testimonials

"I researched the presenters for all of the AP* Institutes in the area and chose SMU because Irish was the presenter. He did not disappoint. Very pleased with the week and ideas to use in the classroom. Best notebook I've ever received!!"

"Mr. Irish presented a wealth of information in a useful and entertaining manner. By far this has been the most useful of all week-long institutes I have attended."

"This will change the way I teach writing--my scores & student learning should SOAR!"

"Very professional and highly insightful."

* Advanced Placement Program and AP are registered trademarks of the College Board and have been used with permission.