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Advanced Placement African American Studies Course Approved By Virginia Department Of Education


Virginia students will have the opportunity to take the College Board’s Advanced Placement course in African American Studies after six months of review by the state’s education department. The Virginia Department of Education determined that the course did not conflict with Governor Glenn Youngkin's controversial first executive order.


The AP African American Studies course, developed in consultation with over 300 African American Studies professors, covers topics such as the origins of the African diaspora, freedom, enslavement, resistance, and civil rights movements. College Board CEO David Coleman emphasized its inclusivity, encompassing the achievements of Black artists, inventors, civil rights activists, and individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Despite conservative opposition to critical race theory and challenges faced by pilot courses in other states, Virginia proceeded with the review of the African American Studies course. Critics had argued that the course content was being targeted, contradicting the goal of teaching a comprehensive and accurate history.


In response to the review, the College Board committee developing the course pledged to make it accessible to as many students as possible while maintaining a comprehensive curriculum. The course is currently in pilot mode in 800 schools nationwide, with plans to offer the first AP African American Studies Exams in the spring of 2024. By the following school year, all schools will be able to offer the course, potentially boosting enrollment in related degree programs.

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Link: WTOP

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