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University of Iowa News Release

July 3, 2006

UI Offers AP Training For Teachers In Des Moines For First Time

The University of Iowa's decision to offer Advanced Placement (AP) training for teachers in Des Moines this summer is apparently a hit with educators. About 250 teachers, or 43 percent more than last year, have registered to attend the 2006 AP Teacher Training Institute (APTTI) in the UI's Pappajohn Education Center -- and there is still a week left before the first of two sessions begins.

The APTTI, the only AP institute held in Iowa, provides teachers interested in the AP program comprehensive preparation for developing and teaching AP courses in their home high schools. This year, the institute's first session runs July 10-14, and the second runs July 17-21.

This is the first summer the UI's Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development decided to offer the institute off the UI campus, a move designed to make attendance more convenient for educators in the Des Moines area and western Iowa.

"This has been a very good program and a real service to Iowa," said Nicholas Colangelo, Ph.D., director of the Belin-Blank Center, which is part of the UI College of Education. "The numbers are up this year, and I think it is in part because of the new location in Des Moines."

Colangelo suggested other reasons for the increased interest in professional development in AP, including a consistent message encouraging schools to provide appropriate challenge at the high school level. APTTI provides teachers with information to help them offer half of the 38 subjects currently offered through The College Board, and the Belin-Blank Center awards APTTI participants a substantial tuition scholarship if they want to earn graduate credit through the program.

Additionally, highly regarded high school AP teachers are teaching the workshops. All have extensive experience in their content areas and in helping students achieve success through AP, and all are endorsed by The College Board.

"There is no substitute for excellent teachers, whether it be K-12 settings or professional development," Colangelo said. "Undoubtedly, a major reason for the success of APTTI is the quality of the College Board consultants. They are top notch."

The APTTI was launched by the Belin-Blank Center in 1991 and is endorsed by The College Board, which develops the AP materials. Forty-two teachers registered that first year, and participation has increased nearly every year since then. Participation more than doubled between 2000 and 2001, from 87 to 198 registrants.

The institute is intended for teachers who want to learn to teach AP courses in a particular content area, for current AP teachers, and for teachers of gifted and talented students, gifted program coordinators, and teachers and administrators who would like to learn how to establish AP programs at their local schools or school districts.

For more information about the institute, or to register, or call 319-335-6148.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Stephen J. Pradarelli, 319-384-0007,