AP 2-D Art & Design Course Description
The AP® Art and Design Portfolio course is designed for students who are seriously interested in the practical experience of art and wish to develop mastery in the concept, composition, and execution of their ideas. AP Art and Design courses are for students who are interested in inquiry-based thinking and art making. The course teaches students the ability to (1) conduct a sustained investigation through practice, experimentation, and revision, guided by questions; (2) skillfully synthesize materials, processes, and ideas; and (3) articulate, in writing, information about their work. All students are expected to produce and submit a portfolio for AP credit.
The AP Portfolios require a Sustained Investigation (Concentration) study. This study teaches students to identify a visual problem, plan a strategy of investigation, develop a body of evolving works, and reflect upon the sequence in a written statement. It’s important for students to define their idea and show evidence of growth and discovery. For 2D Design, students focus on the elements and principles of design. This portfolio can include photography and digital work. It can also contain drawings, paintings, prints, and any other two-dimensional art form that focuses on composition.
As in introductory college course, students will need to work inside and outside the classroom and beyond scheduled periods. Homework, such as maintaining a sketchbook or a journal, should support the depth of learning expected of AP students. Constructive, formative critiques—essential in college classes—are equally important in AP Art and Design. By observing, discussing, and analyzing works of art and design, students learn to evaluate their own and others’ work based on relationships of materials, processes, and ideas. Students’ individual and collaborative evaluations of work—both in progress and completed— develops their understanding of how components of a work interact to produce an overall effect. This understanding informs art making.
Students are encouraged to create works based on their own experiences, knowledge, and interests. As commonly defined, plagiarism consists of passing off as one’s own ideas, work, writings, etc., which belong to another. In accordance with this definition, you are committing plagiarism if you copy the work of another person and turn it in as your own, even if you should have the permission of that person. Plagiarism is one of the worst academic sins, for the plagiarist destroys the trust among colleagues without which research cannot be safely communicated. Plagiarism, the copy of published photographs or artwork, is not tolerated in this course. Artistic integrity and original compositions are emphasized and discussed. Your work should be based on your personal experience, expression, artistic vision and voice. Although the use of appropriated images is seen in the art and design world today, AP Art and Design students who use images made by others as a basis for AP Art and Design Portfolio Exam work must show substantial and significant development beyond duplication. Any work that makes use of (appropriate) photographs, published images, and/or the work of someone else must show substantial and significant development beyond duplication. This is demonstrated through manipulation of the materials, processes, and/or ideas of the source. The student’s individual vision should be clearly evident. It is unethical, constitutes plagiarism, and often violates copyright law simply to copy someone else’s work or imagery (even in another medium) and represent it as one’s own.” Students will be required to document such use in their sketchbooks with a photo of the original and citation of its source and date of publication. Students are encouraged to create works based on their own experiences, knowledge, and interests. Universities, colleges, and art schools have rigorous policies regarding plagiarism. When submitting their portfolios, students must attest: “I hereby affirm that all works in this portfolio were doneby me and that these images accurately represent my actual work.” The College Board reserves the right to decline to score an AP Art and Design Portfolio Exam or cancel an AP Art and Design Portfolio Exam when misconduct occurs, such as copying another artist’s work. In this course, plagiarism will be reported to administration and the student will receive a zero for plagiarized work submitted.
At the beginning of the class, students will be introduced to materials and topics that they can use to investigate, practice, and experiment with. This beginning portion helps guide students to the sustained investigation of their portfolio, where they will investigate materials and a topic of their choosing. In the portfolio, students are expected to show mastery in concept, composition, and execution of ideas. To help students understand expectations, they are shown examples of past AP portfolios for ideas and inspiration. Students are encouraged to investigate College Board’s online AP 2D Art and Design course information until they are familiar with every part of it.
Students will participate in regular class critiques. Critiques are a required part of class participation. Students are expected to discuss their own work, the work of their peers, and the work of master artists in written and verbal form. During these class critiques the vocabulary of art will be used to form decisions about the work being discussed. These verbal discussions will help students develop the language needed to explain their work in written form.
Once students understand the process of inquiry, investigation, practice, experimentation, revision, communication, and reflection, students will develop and choose an idea to explore in depth for their sustained investigation. Students’ sustained investigations are not predominantly about art. They are created using art, specifically Design skills. They are about what the student likes, thinks about or has questions about. In the sustained investigation section, students are expected to develop a body of work that is an investigation of a theme, idea, and inquiry. It should be well planned and investigate an idea that is of personal interest to the student. 15 works of art will be submitted to the AP board, this can include process images of their work.
From both the student’s portfolio of individual artworks and their sustained investigation, we submit five selected works that demonstrate synthesis of materials, processes, and ideas using 2-D art and design skills as examples of excellence to be sent to the College Board to be evaluated. Students understand that making art is an ongoing process that uses informed and critical decision making as these selections are made for their portfolio submission.
In terms of grading, students are expected to produce two finished works of art every month in class of AP quality. In addition to the finished works of art they must also have written inquiries, sketches, practice, at least three process photographs, and a final digital photograph of the artworks. For each project a student is short at the end of each grading period, one grade will be dropped. We stress that this is the student’s personal portfolio, and that outside work and work from other courses can also be included.