Courses

The Academic Challenge Program consists of five Levels, corresponding to grades 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12. Each academic year is divided into two 17 week semesters. During the course of Levels 1-3, students will receive middle school/high school credit for their English/math classes. During Levels 4 and 5, students will receive college credit at Delaware Tech or the University of Delaware.

Math Courses

LEVEL 1
Algebra I: 
This course is offered in the fall and covers terminology, properties, polynomial operations, factoring, fractional simplification, exponents, roots, coordinate graphing and solving of linear equations, linear inequalities, and quadratic equations.

Algebra II:  This course is offered in the spring and covers functional notation, basic principles of coordinate geometry, systems of equations and inequalities, complex numbers, sequences and series, solving and graphing of quadratic, polynomial, exponential, and logarithmic equations, and functions.

LEVEL 2
Geometry: 
This course is offered in the fall and covers postulates and definitions, development of deductive reasoning through direct and indirect proofs, geometric inequalities, perpendicularity, parallelism, congruence, similarity, circles, constructions, polygons, and solids.

Probability & Statistics:  This course is offered in the spring and covers data presentation with central tendency and variability analyses, probability and counting rules, sampling, estimation hypothesis testing, Chi-square and analysis of variance, and simple regression and correlation.  [discrepancy between chart and course description as to Level and semester—verify with ACP]

LEVEL 3
Pre-Calculus: 
This course is divided into two semesters, fall and spring, and reviews central concepts of Algebra, unifying them around the notion of a function and its graph (polynomial, rational, exponential, and logarithmic). The course also includes limit and limit techniques, partial fractions, vectors, proof by induction, polar coordinates, and parametric equations.

LEVEL 4
Analytic Geometry & Calculus A: 
This is a University of Delaware course which includes functions, limit theory and continuity, derivatives, and definite integrals.

MAT 281 Calculus I:  This is a Delaware Tech course which includes the study of functions, limits, and continuity; differential calculus of algebraic and trigonometric functions with applications; and an introduction to the development of the definite integral.

Analytic Geometry & Calculus B:  This is a University of Delaware course which is a continuation of Analytic Geometry and Calculus A and includes conics, exponential log, and trigonometric functions; integration techniques; and polar coordinates and vectors.

LEVEL 5
Analytic Geometry & Calculus C:  
This is a University of Delaware course which is a continuation of Analytic Geometry & Calculus B. The course includes partial derivatives, multiple integrals, line integrals, and series.

MAT 263 Principles of Discrete Math:  This is a Delaware Tech course which explores sets, logic, induction, the integers, functions, sequences, counting, and an introduction to graph theory.  Proofs are emphasized throughout the course.

Differential Equations:  This is a University of Delaware course that includes first and second order differential equations, systems of algebraic equations, determinants, vector spaces, Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors of matrices, and systems of differential equations.

MAT 288 Linear Algebra:  This is a Delaware Tech course which studies linear equations,  determinants, vector spaces, linear transformations, Eigenvalues, and Eigenvectors.

LEVEL 6
Fractals & Chaos: 
This is a University of Delaware course covering one-dimensional dynamics, especially the logistic function and maps of the unit circle, and two-dimensional dynamics including linear transformations and Smale’s horseshoe map. The course concludes with a study of the Mandelbrot set and the Julia sets. Constant attention is given to the fractal structure and chaotic dynamics. Permission from the Academic Challenge Program Chairperson is required to take this course.

English Courses

LEVEL 1
Fundamentals of Language, Grammar, and Writing
:  Students learn the core fundamentals language, grammar, and writing.  This course concentrates on developing skills through the use of literary texts and relevant fiction.

Fundamentals of Writing, Research, and Presentation:  Students learn the core fundamentals of writing, research, and presentation with emphasis on: public speaking, writing informative and explanatory essays, writing for an audience, using technology, and conducting short research projects. Skills are developed through the use of informational texts.

LEVEL 2
World Literature: 
Students continue the progression of skills through World Literature, with an emphasis on evaluating speakers’ points of view, writing arguments to support claims, gathering and using information from sources, citing evidence to support analysis, analyzing authors' uses of text and evaluating the claims made in a text.  This course uses both literary and informational texts from a variety of cultures and traditions.

British Literature:  Students continue the progression of skills through a survey of British fiction and nonfiction.  Areas of focus include integrating multiple sources of information; writing informative/explanatory/analytical texts; analyzing the development of complex characters over the course of a text; analyzing multiple interpretations of a story, drama, or poem; and analyzing documents of historical and literary significance.

LEVEL 3
American Literature:
  Students develop skills through the study of American fiction and nonfiction.  Particular attention is given to the writing process; using technology to produce, publish, and update writing products; drawing evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research; gathering relevant information from authoritative print and digital sources; analyzing how an author develops an argumentative or narrative text.

Writing and Research:  Students continue to develop all of the skills from the previous courses and apply them to produce a research paper on a literary topic.  The goal of the course is to prepare students to write at a level and depth appropriate for introductory, collegiate composition courses.

LEVEL 4
Oral Communications: 
A Delaware Technical Community College course designed to improve listening and oral communications skills through practice in individual and group presentations and projects. 

Critical Reading & Writing:  University of Delaware standard Freshman Composition course.  It develops expository and argumentative writing skills and fosters skills in analytical reading.

LEVEL 5
Introduction to Poetry:
  University of Delaware course that fosters appreciation and studies representative masterworks of English, American and world verse.  Requires oral and written analysis of poems from the Middle Ages to present.

Introduction to Drama:  University of Delaware course that examines masterworks of drama from the classical era to the present. Requires students’oral and written analyses of dramatic works.

Short Story:  University of Delaware course examining the short story as a narrative form, with readings from American and foreign short story traditions. Requires students’ oral and written analyses of fiction.