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AP Computer Science A: Java Programming

Provided by Purdue University (PurdueX)
See prerequisites
7–14 hours
per week, for 6 weeks

$49 USD for a certificate of completion

AP Computer Science A from Purdue University

Start Date:

Before you start

No computer science knowledge required. Some basic Algebra skills expected.
Course opens: Sep 3, 2019
Course ends: Oct 15, 2019

What you will learn

  • Ethical computing
  • Basic computer hardware
  • Number representations
  • Java program structure
  • Simple input / output
  • Data types and variables
  • Assignment statements
  • Primitive types and reference types
  • Arithmetic operators
  • Math library
  • String class and methods
  • Integer and Double classes
  • Boolean type
  • Relational operators
  • Selection statements
  • Short-circuit operation
  • DeMorgan's laws

Unit Name or Timeframe: Computer Programming Fundamentals (2 weeks)

  • Discussion of the objectives of good programmers (correctness, design, style, efficiency)
  • Problem solving and computer science
  • The ethics of computer use, social networking, and engineering for the greater good.
  • Computer hardware and memory
  • Number representations and conversions
  • Overflow and underflow
  • Introduction to Java IDE and debugger (DrJava, IntelliJ)
  • Building a first Java class and simple program
  • The main method
  • I/O in Java

Unit Name or Timeframe: Primitive data types, variables, arithmetic (2 weeks)

  • Data types and variables
  • Constants
  • ASCII and Unicode representation of characters
  • Assignment
  • Primitive types vs reference types
  • Binary arithmetic operators
  • Static methods and the Math class
  • String class and functions
  • Wrapper classes for integer and double type

Unit Name or Timeframe: Selection (2 weeks)

  • Boolean type
  • Relational operators
  • Selection statements (if, else, else-if, switch)
  • Short-circuit execution
  • Code blocks
  • Dangling else
  • Compound relational operators and truth tables
  • DeMorgan’s Laws


In this computer science course, you will learn the basics of programming in the Java language, and cover topics relevant to the AP Computer Science A course and exam.

This course includes a broad view of computer operation, the global impact of computing, and then introduces Java programming concepts including variables, selection and object-oriented design.

This course is for anyone interested in taking a first-level computer-programming course, particularly those who attend a school that does not provide a similar class.

No previous programming knowledge is needed. We are looking forward to helping you explore this exciting new world!

Meet your instructors

Sunil Prabhakar
Professor of Computer Science
Purdue University
Debbie Perouli
Assistant Professor of Computer Science
Marquette University
Phil Sands
K-12 Outreach Coordinator for Computer Science
Purdue University
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