Prepare for College at Your Own Pace
CTD’s Online AP® program gives students access to college-level courses in a flexibly paced environment that accommodates early readiness for advanced content, full course loads, or limited availability. Online AP courses help students learn important skills and concepts, time management, and self-advocacy skills essential for college success.
Why Choose Online AP Courses?
CTD AP courses allow students to practice building their own schedule and managing challenging course work at their own pace to set them up for success in college and beyond.
- Access to a wide range of challenging AP courses that may not be available through a student’s school
- Development of students’ critical thinking, study, and academic writing skills
- An opportunity for students to demonstrate readiness for college-level courses
- Preparation for success on AP exams. Courses are authorized by the College Board and aligned with the latest AP course and exam frameworks.
In addition to AP courses, CTD offers a diverse range of online program options; view a full list here.
The Online AP program welcomes applications from Pre-qualified applicants as well as New Scores and Portfolio applicants. Before beginning the online application, determine which type of applicant you are based on the descriptions below.
Applications are submitted through MyCTD. Applications are reviewed in the order in which they are completed. Incomplete applications do not "hold a spot" in the desired course. Once you have made a payment and submitted the application you will receive an email with further instructions. You will then be able to return to the application and select View Application Details to upload any necessary documents and to get the teacher recommendation link, if necessary.
Pre-qualified Review Applicant
You are a pre-qualified review applicant if you are in grade 9 through grade 12 and you meet both of the following criteria:
- You have successfully completed a CTD course through the Summer Program or Online Program at the Magenta Tier or Indigo Tier (for Advanced Enrichment courses) or Indigo Tier (for Accelerated courses), within the previous twenty-four months.
- You are now applying for an Online AP course with the same qualifying subject area (Verbal, Math, or Science) as a CTD course you previously completed.
New Scores Applicant
You are a New Scores applicant if you are in grade 9 through grade 12 and you meet either one of the following criteria:
- You have not attended any CTD program for the past two years and you have qualifying test scores (Verbal, Math, or Science) for your desired course that are no more than two years old.
- You have previously attended a course with the Summer Program or CTD Online Program, but you are now applying for a course with a different qualifying subject area (Verbal, Math, or Science) and you have qualifying test scores.
New Portfolio Applicant
You are a portfolio applicant if you are in grade 9 through grade 12 and you do not have qualifying test scores because you have either:
- never taken a nationally normed standardized achievement test or above-grade-level test, OR
- taken this type of test but not achieved a qualifying score.
An Admission Portfolio includes the following documents:
- Required: one teacher recommendation form (available once you have submitted your application) indicating that the student is performing 1½ to 2 years above grade level in the subject area of the course to which the student is applying;
- Required: most recent school report card indicating exceptional performance in the subject area of the course to which the student is applying;
- If available: most recent standardized testing report (e.g. NWEA/MAP) or results of a state grade-level assessment.
Because applications are accepted on a continuous basis, courses that are listed as available may close before a student's application is complete and comes up for review. We strongly suggest listing second and third choice courses on applications. Applications are processed and reviewed by Admissions staff once all necessary documentation has been provided through the applicant's MyCTD account.
It can take up to a week for our staff to review newly submitted applications and any documentation provided to complete an application later. Until our staff has verified the documents, submissions will not be reflected in what you see in MyCTD. We kindly ask you to not call nor e-mail our office to confirm receipt of documentation or application items within a week of submitting them.
It may take 2 to 4 weeks for an admissions decision to be made once the application is complete. You will receive an email once an admissions decision has been made.
- For winter enrollment, students will start their course on January 13 or January 27. In order to be eligible to be enrolled for a particular start date, the application must be COMPLETE no less than 5 days prior to the start date.
- Regardless of start date, all one-credit courses will end on April 30, 2021.
- Regardless of start date, all two-credit courses will end on August 17, 2021.
- The deadline for the Early Application Tuition Discount Rate is January 3, 2021. Tuition will automatically increase by $25 after this date.
Many Online AP® courses have prerequisites. Please read the course description carefully.
To qualify for Magenta Tier Online AP Courses students must be in grade 9 through 12 and must also provide one of the following:
- Achievement of a score of 95th percentile or higher on a nationally normed grade-level assessment in the required qualifying subject area (Verbal, Math, or Science) for the desired course.
- Successful past completion of a CTD course, with the same qualifying subject area (Verbal, Math, or Science) within the past two years.
- Submission of a portfolio application, consisting of a teacher recommendation and the student’s most recent report card demonstrating that the student is performing exceptionally well in the qualifying subject area.
- Participation in above grade-level testing such as the PSAT™8/9 test taken in grades 3, 4, 5, or 6, the ACT® or SAT® test taken in grades 6, 7 or 8 (NUMATS) within the last two years.
Prerequisites and Graded Writing Sample
Many courses require additional prerequisites for admission. Any prerequisites are included the course description. Any student applying to a course with a prerequisite must submit documentation showing the prerequisite has been met unless CTD already has such information from previous applications, or if the prerequisite has been met via a CTD course.
Graded writing samples are required for many English/Language Arts classes. Evidence that the writing sample has been assessed for academic purposes can be provided on the writing sample itself or by submitting an accompanying rubric or other feedback that is clearly tied to the writing sample. Providing an ungraded writing sample will result in a delay of the application being deemed complete and may cause an applicant to miss out on a class that fills to capacity.
English Language Proficiency
Because courses are taught in English, test scores are used to assess proficiency and assist in course placement. TOEFL (or TOEFL Jr. for grades 4-8) or IELTS scores are required for students for whom English is not the first language and who do not have PSAT, I-Excel, SAT, ACT, ASSET, or PreACT scores.
Requests for Grade Advancement/Acceleration
CTD course content is advanced or grade-level accelerated, as reflected in course descriptions and the standard admission requirements. Though course content is advanced, students can engage with intellectual peers who are also age- or grade-level peers. Therefore, most students should apply for courses aligned to the grade-level in which they are currently enrolled. Still, for some students demonstrating a need for an even higher level of instruction than CTD’s advanced and accelerated courses already provide, further acceleration may be an option. Visit the Requesting an Accelerated Placement web page for more information about the process, timeline, and required materials.
- One-credit AP course: $750
- Two-credit AP course: $1,215
Tuition increases by $25 after January 3
- Please see our withdrawal information for policies specific to this program.
CTD offers need-based financial aid awarded as requests are received. Families are encouraged to apply early because the amount of aid available is limited. Please see the Financial Aid page for details.
- Deadline to complete a financial aid application for the Online AP program winter session is January 3.
- In order to start your class, any balance due must be cleared. Once a financial aid decision has been made, you must clear any remaining balance before you can begin your class. If your balance is not cleared, your start date will be moved to the next start date available.
- Students will not be able to be begin their class between published start dates.
- You will receive the FACTS application link in your application confirmation email once the $60 dollar tuition deposit is paid and the application is submitted.
- It is imperative that you complete the financial aid application as soon as possible as it may take FACTS up to ten days to process your information.
- If you previously completed a FACTS application for the 2019-2020 academic year for CTD, you must still attach the 2020-2021 FACTS application to your FACTS account. You will be able to link your FACTS account to this new FACTS information. You may need to update financial information.
- If you experience difficulties with the FACTS process please call the FACTS helpline at 866/412-4637.
Students in Online AP courses should expect to spend 6-8 hours per week engaged in rigorous, independent course work, guided by an instructor.
Students have flexibility in terms of when they complete course work, and instructors provide individualized feedback to help students stay on track with course material.
Students who have the most success in Online AP courses are active, independent learners who take initiative, have strong communication and organization skills, and have a desire to learn in an online platform. A student’s ability to manage their time, meet deadlines, and adjust their efforts accordingly is imperative.
Schoology, the learning management system used by CTD, is a user-friendly platform designed specifically for K-12 online learners, and is COPPA compliant.
Students will receive login information to Schoology via e-mail 12-24 hours before the course start date.
With their login information, students will receive information about a live, online orientation for all new Online Program students. (Returning students are also welcome to repeat the orientation.) The orientation will be recorded for students to view at a later time, if desired.
Access to course material, including instructor contact information, syllabi, and assignments, begins on the course start date.
The course acceptance notification email will contain a link to CTD’s online bookstore, where students can find textbook requirements for their course.
Textbooks can be purchased from CTD’s online bookstore, or from another vendor of choice. The use of a textbook varies by course, and not all online courses require one, though most online honors and AP® courses do require textbooks.
Textbook and supply costs (i.e. lab kits, if applicable) are not included in course fees.
Students enrolled in Online AP courses have up to 16 weeks (for 1-credit courses) and up to 34 weeks (for 2-credit courses) to complete their course work, depending on the session and the student's enrollment date. Students are welcome to accelerate through the course in a shorter time frame and should share their plans with their instructor if they plan to do so.
Students in Online Honors, Online AP, or Online ASO classes may request up to 3, 1-month extensions from their instructor, and are considered on an individual basis. To qualify for an extension, students need to have made significant progress towards completion of course work. (At a minimum, students need to have finished more than half of the course work to submit a request for extension.) Additionally, a student must have demonstrated the desire and capacity to complete the course in order for an extension request to be approved.
Course extensions begin on the course end date, and are consecutive, and are not able to be delayed. A $100 fee is assessed for each month of an extension.
Requests for course extensions should be directed to the course instructor in writing and must be approved by the course instructor and CTD.
For each successfully completed semester (with a grade of C- or better), students will receive one high school credit through CTD.
As an accredited institution, CTD issues credits to students successfully completing Online Honors, Online ASO, and Online AP courses. However, acceptance of credit from CTD is a local school decision. Students interested in pursuing credit should discuss their school’s policy concerning credit from outside institutions with an academic counselor or school administrator before applying.
Currently, the AP Course Ledger on the College Board website lists the CTD Online Program as Northwestern University - Center for Talent Development Gifted LearningLinks Online Program. All CTD Online AP courses are College Board authorized.
Online AP students receive a letter grade and evaluation at the end of the first semester and again after completion of the course (for two semester courses). The final evaluation provides feedback on the student’s achievements in the course, ability to navigate the online course environment, and future course recommendations. An e-mail notification will be sent when the evaluation is available for access via MyCTD.
Unofficial transcripts can be generated via MyCTD (select “Tools” and then “Transcript” within the menu bar) upon completion of the course and final approval of the student’s evaluation. We encourage students to download their own transcript and ask that schools be flexible given current circumstances.
If an official transcript is required, please contact CTD’s Admissions and Advising office to request an official transcript be emailed to the student’s school. Additional official transcripts can be requested via the Official Transcript Request Form.
CTD does not administer AP exams.
All AP exams are held in May, as determined by the College Board. Most schools require students to register and pay for AP exams in early fall. See registration details, including information on finding local AP coordinators.
Students are strongly encouraged to speak to their school counselor or AP coordinator prior to registering for an AP course to see if taking the exam at school will be an option. Many schools allow homeschooled students and students from other districts to register for an exam being offered at the school, with advanced planning. (It is not a requirement for a school to offer a particular course in order to administer that AP exam.)
See additional information on AP exams from the College Board.
All course work and communication (including instructor contact information, the course syllabus, and assignments) take place within the Schoology course site. Schoology can be accessed on a desktop or laptop computer, or with the Schoology mobile app for iOS or Android tablets and phones. While tablets may be sufficient for most course work, some web tools and/or websites may require the use of a computer.
Students need access to a stable internet connection and updated web browser.
Participation in “live” course activities or multimedia recordings may require a computer web camera, microphone or headset.
See Frequently Asked Questions about Online Program courses.
- For questions regarding Online Program admissions and financial aid, please contact:
- For questions about current Online Program enrollments, please contact:
- For questions about school partnerships with Online Programs, please contact: