CGA High School Learner Panel - FAQs

  • On Thursday, February 13, 2014, the Coppell Gifted Association held a special event at Coppell High School where middle school learners and their parents could listen to the experiences of CISD seniors representing the Advanced Academics pathways at Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell.  Below are questions collected that evening which require a response from an administrator.

    Q: If I choose to attend Coppell High School, do I have to choose the IB or AP track?  Can I do both?

    Coppell High School offers IB and AP courses for learners (and New Tech High offers AP courses).  Enrollment in those courses is open to all learners who elect to participate in a rigorous instructional environment.

    AP courses are offered in a “cafeteria” fashion where learners have the flexibility to customize their course selection by taking as many courses as they would like in their areas of strength or interest.  (This is true at both Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell.)

    Learners who enter the IB program their junior year commit to completing 6 IB courses and sitting for the exams that correspond with those courses.  For more information and resources related to the Coppell High School IB World School, please click here.  (IB courses are available only at Coppell High School.)

    Pre-AP and Pre-IB courses are available to freshman and sophomore learners to explore at Coppell High School.

    Pre-AP courses (or the equivalent) are available to freshman and sophomores learners to explore at New Tech High.

    *It is possible for a learner at Coppell High School to enroll in select AP courses during his/her freshman and sophomore year and then enter the IB program as a junior.

    Q: Are there any criteria or requirements to select IB or AP or any other courses?
    IB and AP courses are open enrollment.  Any learner may enroll without prerequisite courses. 

    Q: How does each type of course impact overall G.P.A.?  (Dual Credit, IB, AP, GT) 
    The G.P.A. “weighting” of the different types of courses offered at each campus is determined by CISD Local Policy EIC.  Please see the link below for an explanation of the policy.  For specific course information, refer to either the CHS or NTH@C course selection guides which can be found under the counseling tab on each campus’ website.

    Q: Are GT classes weighted at level 4 for G.P.A. in all grades? 
    No.  There is no additional G.P.A. weight given to a GT class.  GT classes have the same weight as the AP or Pre-AP course of the same weight.  (Ex: Pre-AP Geometry and GT Pre-AP Geometry both have a level 3 G.P.A. weighting.)

    Q:  Do schedule conflicts prevent learners from taking a specific course (ex: AP Biology) and specific elective (ex: choir)?
    A: At both Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell, there is a high participation rate in Advanced Academics coursework, which more often than not results in multiple sections of an advanced course scheduled throughout out the day.  This usually allows learners to enroll in the elective of their choosing.  However, on occasion, a conflict does occur and learners must choose between one course and another. 

    Q: What is the percentage of students who take the AP course and score a 3+ on the exam? 
    Both Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell have a high percentage of their learners scoring 3+ on AP exams.  In 2016, 82% of CHS learner and 56% of NTH@C learners earned a score of 3+. 

    Q: Can you take an AP test from a dual credit course?
    Yes.  You do not have to be enrolled in an AP Course in order to sit for the exam.  Learners who choose to sit for an exam for a course they are not enrolled in will need to be mindful of exam registration deadlines as they are announced by the campus since the primary communication for those deadlines is through the classes themselves. 

    Q: How many students earn the IB diploma? 
    The percentage of CHS learners that earn the IB Diploma is on the rise.  In 2013, 83% of seniors enrolled in the IB Program at Coppell High School earned the diploma.  That percentage is significantly higher than either the national average or the world-wide average. 

    Q: I heard a rumor that IB may leave the high school to be based in a separate school.  Is that going to happen?
    Coppell High School has earned the IB designation and is the home of the IB school. 

    Q: What is the difference between a GT course and an AP or IB Course?
    There are GT identified learners in AP, IB and GT courses.  The difference between AP and IB courses and GT courses is all learners in a GT course are identified Gifted and Talented.  In those self-contained GT courses, there may be increased depth and complexity in content coverage and/or an increased pace in content coverage.

    Q: What does someone do who doesn’t know what they want to do but would like to explore options?
    Both Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell offer a variety of courses and instructional settings for learners to explore their interests and passions. 

    Q: If I am interested in being a Senior Scholar, but that does not begin until late in my junior year or the start of my senior year, what should I do before that?  
    Learners who are interested in participating in the Senior Scholars program should choose challenging coursework to prepare for full-time enrollment at Northlake Community College.  Learners should share their interest in the Senior Scholar program with their counselors.

    Q: What is the difference between Dual Credit and AP credit?  Can a university deny either type of credit?
    Advanced Placement Exams are one way for learners to earn college credit.  Colleges begin awarding credit with scores of a “3” on the 1-5 scale AP exams are scored on.  The receiving university decides which exams and scores they will award credit for.  That decision is not made by New Tech High @ Coppell or Coppell High School.  Learners are strongly encouraged to contact the admissions departments of the universities they are interested in to determine the specific credit requirements and practices for those universities.

    Dual credit is simultaneously awarded high school and college credit.  Coppell ISD works with the Dallas County Community College System to determine which courses cover the required curriculum and can be awarded both credits.  This list is reexamined each year.  The 2013-2014 list can be viewed here.  Dual Credit courses in the core areas can be transferred to any Texas university.  The receiving university makes the final determination.  Learners are strongly encouraged to contact the admissions departments of the universities they are interested in to determine the credit transfer practices for those universities.

    Q: Can you select fine arts no matter which path you choose?
    Texas requires all learners to earn one fine arts credit for graduation.  There are robust arts pathways at both Coppell High School and New Tech High @ Coppell.  Learners at Coppell High School may select from a variety of arts offerings including (but not limited to) AP Studio Art and AP 3D Art.  Learners at New Tech High @ Coppell focus on the digital arts through at coherent sequences of courses offered on campus and may then choose to take additional elective courses through the dual credit offerings at Northlake.  (Dual credit art options are also available to CHS learners.)

    Q: Which of the courses/paths are more discussion based?  
    There are discussion elements built into all Advanced Academics courses.  Learners are required to explore content in depth and discuss various points of view (including their own) around those topics

    Resources for further exploration:
    Exploring AP Courses

    Exploring IB 

    Advanced Academics in CISD