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VHS AP® Computer Science A Summer Assignment
The AP® Computer Science A course focuses on fundamental programming algorithms using the
Java language. This summer assignment has you practicing pre-requisite skills and introduces
new content to help you transition more smoothly during the first week of the course.
Address each of the following, clearly labeling your responses for each portion of every question.
It’s important to express your thoughts in your own words; do not just copy/paste off a website.
In each case, provide an explanation with your work. This assignment is worth 50 points (10
points each).
(1) Explore programming languages:
1. Visit the TIOBE Index (https://www.tiobe.com/tiobe-index/). As of the current date,
what percentage is Java in popularity?
2. Explain how the TIOBE index determines programming language popularity.
3. Which language seems to be increasing in popularity at a fast rate? Explain.
4. Which programming language seems to be dying? Explain.
5. The AP® CS A exam used to be taught in C++ and Pascal. Explain why you think Java
is used as a teaching language as opposed to C++. Support your explanation with
evidence and cite the sources that you used.
(2) Compare programming languages:
1. Do some research to write code that will display “Hello World” to the screen in Java
and two other programming languages.
2. Provide your code and identify the programming language for each; cite your
sources for each example of code.
3. Highlight at least three similarities and three differences that you see between the
three versions of code.
(3) Introduction to programming: algorithms and pseudocode
1. Complete the following TedED lesson: What’s an Algorithm? . Watch the video and
complete the “Think” portion of the lesson.
2. Think of something you do every day. Develop an algorithm to describe that process
step-by-step to someone who would completely unfamiliar with the process. You
must include at least 4 actions, 1 decision, and 1 repeatable action. Make sure to
italicize your actions, bold your decisions, and underline your repeatable actions.
3. Convert your algorithm to pseudocode. Visit the BBC Bitesize: Designing an
Algorithm website to learn more about pseudocode.
(4) Programming: Scratch
1. Visit the MIT Scratch programming site (https://scratch.mit.edu/)
2. Create a program in Scratch that calculates the hypotenuse of a right triangle given two
3. Capture screenshots of your final code and paste into the word document.
4. Summarize the process that you used to create this program. What were the most
intuitive steps? What were the most difficult challenging aspects? What did you learn
in the process?
(5) Programming: Introduction to Java
1. Go to the CodingBat (https://codingbat.com/java) Java programming site
2. Choose three problems from Warmup-1 (https://codingbat.com/java/Warmup-1) and
solve them. It’s ok to use the solution button!
3. With each solution, you need to comment on each line of the code. Comments are
short notes throughout the code that summarize or explain the intent of the code. For
each line of code, explain what the code is doing.
4. There’s likely a lot of code you don’t understand or may not be able to interpret right
away. Research the keywords such as public, Boolean, int, &&, ||, and !, <=, >=, String
to be able explain what each means in your comments.
5. Cite all sources you used to help you find answers.
How to submit your work:
Create a new document and complete each of the assignments one through five above. Make
sure you complete each portion of every number and clearly label your responses.
Include your name at the top of your document and convert it to a pdf. On the first week of
class, you will be directed to upload this document to the dropbox in your course.

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