AP Program

All UTS courses are challenging in their own right with a rigorous curriculum and enriching opportunities and experiences above and beyond the standard at Ontario high schools. But students who are ready for an even greater challenge may be eligible for Advanced Placement® (AP) courses. UTS offers a full range of AP courses, the AP Capstone™ Diploma and the AP Seminar and Research Certificate.


A balanced approach to success

A well-rounded AP program

UTS provides students who choose to tackle high-performance AP courses the opportunity for a well-rounded, transformative education.

At UTS, students take ten courses instead of eight each year, the typical number in Ontario high schools. The UTS science and math program is accelerated throughout the Foundation and Middle years. This allows students to spread out their AP courses over their two senior years, rather than completing all of their STEM AP courses in one year. This also creates room in their class schedules to round out their education with art, language, social science and music courses.

AP courses at UTS benefit from
U of T connections

The AP Program at UTS gives students the chance to tap into University of Toronto research and connections, through our U of T Affiliation and partnerships. Some UTS students even publish their AP Research findings externally in journals such as the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine and the STEM Fellowship Journal.

The pace of AP courses is even more intense than our regular classes, and they lead to AP exams in May, administered externally by the College Board®.

AP Capstone™ Diploma
The Seminar & Research Certificate 

The Seminar and Research Certificates recognize the work that students do in developing research, analysis, writing and presentation skills.

The AP Capstone Diploma recognizes students who complete their Seminar and Research courses as well as four other AP courses and associated AP Exams with a score of three or higher.

The two core AP Capstone™ and Certificate courses at UTS are:

  • AP Seminar: Challenge and Change in Society - Students research complex problems through multiple disciplinary lenses and stakeholder perspectives
  • AP Research: Interdisciplinary Studies - Students individual research questions, design independent research studies, collect and analyze data, write a scholarly research paper and present their findings in an oral defense

UTS Mean AP Scores for 2023

Compared against Ontario and global scores

AP Courses Offered at UTS

Calculus AB
Chinese Language and Culture
Computer Science A
Computer Science Principles
English Language and Composition
English Literature and Composition

French Language and Culture
Human Geography 
Physics 1
World History: Modern

2023 AP Distinction at UTS

208 UTS students wrote 708 AP exams in 24 subject areas, with notable distinctions.

AP Scholar - 58 students
AP Scholar (Honor) - 28 students
AP Scholar (Distinction) - 102 Students

AP International Diploma - 8 Students
Capstone Diploma - 9 Students
Capstone Certificate - 12 students

Why UTS students take AP courses 
  • Students may want to explore a subject more in depth, because they are passionate about a subject and want to learn as much as possible 
  • Students seek to get ahead on university credits as most universities have an AP credit policy, giving some credits for successful test scores
  • Some U.S. and International Universities require AP test scores 
Characteristics of AP students
  • Excellent work habits, and a willingness to commit to independent study and review
  • Strong background and strong achievement in the prerequisite courses
  • Ability to cover the core and enrichment material at an accelerated pace
  • Commitment to writing AP exams in May for their courses
How to gain the most from AP courses

UTS students who take two to three AP courses in each of their S5 and S6 (Grade 11 and 12) years tend to gain the most from the AP Program.

  • This gives them the time to seek support if they need it and to focus on the independent study needed to achieve scores of four and five on AP Exams and Seminar and Research submissions.
  • Scoring the maximum score of five on a few AP courses provides a better foundation for post-secondary learning and improves a student's U.S. or international university application much more than a large number of AP courses with lower scores. 

It’s quality, not quantity, that counts. The College Board does not recommend students take AP Exams or courses before Grade 11 or 12.

  • Once a student demonstrates they can do well on a few AP courses, university admission teams will look more closely at other aspects of their application, so it is important for students to share other achievements, beyond AP courses, on their university application.