AP Syllabus

The goal of this course is to prepare you for the AP Art History Exam. Over the span of this course you will be familiarized with the history of art from its beginnings to contemporary times. We will study major art works, artists, and art movements, as well as the theories and methods of art production.

This class is one that combines many of the courses you have studied so far in your school career. Nothing is left untouched: art, history, literature, the classics, religion, sociology, psychology, and mathematics. It is all here, in picture form. It is not enough for us to study the art; we must study what drove humans to make art in the first place. Ultimately, learning to understand art is learning to understand our culture. This course will tie many things together for you.

Class Rules

  1. Be respectful to all others. We all joke around, myself included. Respect people’s limits when someone finds your comment offensive instead of funny. Respect people’s space, requests, class work, and property. You should expect to be treated the same in return.
  2. Be Prepared. You are expected to be ready to learn and participate every day. You need to bring the few materials that are required of you, and you need to be in the class by the bell, quickly getting to your desk so we can start the day’s lesson.
  3. Follow directions.
  4. Abide by the Student Code of Conduct (SCOC). There are expectations of dress and behavior that are district wide, and those apply to this classroom as well.


  1. Verbal warning
  2. Conference with student
  3. Detention
  4. Conference with parent
  5. Referral

Serious infractions will result in an immediate referral to the AP’s office.

Tardy Policy
A student is considered tardy if he or she is not in the room as the bell begins to ring. The door is shut as the bell rings. A student will need a valid pass to gain entrance to the class.

Each nine-weeks grade is determined as:

  • 70% summative: to include chapter tests, nine-weeks tests, and major projects
  • 30% formative: to include study guides, quizzes, in class writing assignments, and minor projects

Late Work Policy

Late work policies differ for the different activities we have.

For homework assignments and projects, there will be firm deadlines.  When that deadline occurs, your work is due, and will be graded as-is.  I will accept work after the deadline, but any and all late work will have a twenty-point penalty.

Quizzes may be retaken for an improved grade, without any grade penalty.

Tests that were failed can also be retaken for an improved grade. For retakes you will need to first schedule a tutoring session with me (to help address any issues), and then you may retake the test.  Retake grades are an average of the 1st test and the retest grades.

If a student is absent on the day an assignment is due, they are expected to turn it in on the first day of their return (without penalty).  Missed tests will be rescheduled.

Primary Texts

  • Kleiner, Fred S., Gardner’s Art through the Ages; 13th ed., Wadsworth Publishing Company, 2009. You will need to secure your own textbook from the bookroom on your own time.

Tutoring and Working Beyond the Classroom
Once a week I will host an after-school tutoring session (the day will be determined and announced soon). Most of these tutoring sessions will focus on current material, but a few sessions will be devoted towards semester tests, art of cultures beyond the European tradition, and/or preparing for the AP test.

These tutoring sessions are not mandatory but students have often expressed how much better they were prepared for the course by attending these sessions. We have seen a 10-point jump in a student’s average (and a 1-point jump in AP score) or those who regularly attended tutoring sessions.

This class has a website to support it. The site will be a resource for studying and class preparation and it will be a vehicle by which homework will be assigned and discussed. It does not require any form of registration. We will be using this site starting this week so you should go ahead and bookmark it as soon as you can.

We will use the Remind texting service to help provide reminders of due dates, announce homework assignments, and provide any needed alerts.

For questions, I can best be reached by email.

Website: elamarthistory.com
Remind: Text message to: 81010
Message: @elamites
E-Mail: james.elam@killeenisd.org

Last Words
This is a difficult course but one in which you can be highly successful. If there is something I can do to help you, please do not hesitate to ask!

This offer also extends to issues beyond the class. If there is something you need help with, I will be glad to help you to the best of my ability. But there is a catch – you have to tell me what is going on. I am a lot of things, but a mind reader I am not. Let me know what is going on. I look forward to this year with you! I hope you enjoy it, have fun, and learn!