Advanced Placement Incentive (API) Program Grants

Advanced Placement Incentive (API) Grants Awarded

  • The Alabama State Department of Education was the recipient of an API grant from the U.S. Department of Education in 2011. The grant is being used to expand the Advanced Placement Training and Incentive Program (APTIP).
  • The City of Birmingham Board of Education was the recipient of a grant in 2006. The grant was used to offer professional development opportunities to AP instructors, implement College Board's SpringBoard curriculum, improve parent outreach, and provide students with mentoring and tutoring (U.S. Department of Education, 2012).


View a list of all API awards at the U.S. Department of Education website.

U.S. Department of Education. (2012). Advanced placement incentive program grants. Retrieved from

Dual Enrollment and Early College High School

Dual Enrollment and Articulation
“Alabama offers dual enrollment and statewide articulation to ease the transition from secondary to postsecondary [education]. Alabama has statewide articulation agreements in the following clusters:

  • Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
  • Architecture & Construction
  • Arts, AV Technology & Communications
  • Business Management & Administration
  • Education & Training
  • Human Services
  • Information Technology
  • Manufacturing
  • STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics]
  • Transportation, Distribution & Logistics” (National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education Consortium, 2013)


A student who is eligible for dual enrollment/dual credit:

  • “Has a ‘B’ average in completed high school courses
  • Has written approval of the principal and the local superintendent of education
  • Is in Grade 10, 11, or 12, or has an exception granted by the participating institution upon the recommendation of the student's principal and superintendent” (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, 2011)


High school students enrolled in postsecondary institutions must pay the tuition normally required by that institution.

Early College High School
Alabama is not participating in the Early College High School Initiative (ECHSI). More information about schools participating in ECHSI is available at the ECHSI website (Early College High School Initiative, 2013).

The Alabama Community College System offers several programs that allow high school students to earn college credit while attending high school. Examples include the following:

  • Fast Track to College Academy allows students to attain postsecondary certificates or degrees while simultaneously attending high school. This program will be funded for five years through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Vocational and Adult Education.
  • Selma Early College High School allows students to graduate from high school with up to 60 hours of college credit by taking both high school and college classes. This program is a partnership between Wallace State Community College-Selma and Selma Early College High School with assistance from the Knowledge Works Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (Alabama Community College System, 2014).


Alabama Community College System. (2014). Early college initiatives. Retrieved from

Early College High School Initiative. (2013). Schools. Retrieved from

National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education Consortium. (2013). Alabama [Interactive map of state career technical education profiles]. Retrieved from

Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. (2011). Alabama [Interactive map of state policies]. Retrieved from

Career and Technical Education and Programs of Study

Career and Technical Education (CTE)
Alabama’s standards for CTE were adopted in 2007 and implemented during the 2008–09 school year. Alabama does not currently plan to implement the Common Career Technical Core, a state- and district-led initiative to develop relevant and rigorous content standards for CTE aligned with the 16 national career clusters. The state CTE standards are next slated for revision during the 2015–16 school year (Alabama State Department of Education, n.d.). Further information about the Common Career Technical Core is available at the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium website.

Alabama’s full Perkins IV five-year state plan is available from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education website. For more information about CTE in Alabama, visit the Alabama Department of Education, Career and Technical Education website. Additional information about CTE in Alabama is available from the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium website.

Programs of Study
"Alabama has adopted the National Career Clusters Model and is implementing all 16 Career Clusters" (NASDCTEc, n.d.). 

The 16 National Career Clusters include:

  • Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources
  • Architecture and Construction
  • Arts, Audiovideo Technology, and Communications
  • Business, Management, and Administration
  • Education and Training
  • Finance
  • Government and Public Administration
  • Health Science
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Human Services
  • Information Technology
  • Law, Public Safety, Corrections, and Security
  • Manufacturing
  • Marketing, Sales, and Service
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
  • Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (NASDCTEc, 2013).


For more information about programs of study in Alabama visit the Alabama Learning Exchange website.

Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE). (n.d.). ALSDE: Curriculum. Retrieved from

National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium. (2013). The 16 career clusters. Retrieved from

National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium. (n.d.). Alabama [Interactive map of state CTE profiles]. Retrieved from

National Policy Landscape

Race to the Top (RTTT)
Alabama was not the recipient of an RTTT award during Phases 1, 2, or 3. Award recipients are available to view from the U.S. Department of Education website.

Common Core State Standards
Alabama adopted the Common Core State Standards in mathematics and English language arts in 2010 (Alabama Education News, 2011). Visit the Alabama Department of Education website for more information about the Common Core State Standards in Alabama. A complete guide to the adoption of the standards is available from the Common Core State Standards Initiative website.

Common Core Assessment Consortia
Alabama is not participating in the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) or the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC). States participating in PARCC are listed on the PARCC website. States participating in SBAC are listed on the SBAC website.

Alabama began phasing in the use of new college and career readiness assessments for students in Grades 3–12 after the Alabama State Board of Education approved the assessment plan on September 10, 2009. New end-of-course assessments in English language arts, mathematics, and sciences will replace the current Alabama High School Graduation Exams. In addition, the state will use ACT’s EXPLORE, PLAN, ACT plus writing, and WorkKeys assessments. The full phase-in of the new assessments is scheduled to be implemented by the 2015–16 school year (Alabama State Board of Education, 2013).

Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Flexibility
“The Alabama State Department of Education's ESEA flexibility request was approved on June 12, 2013 (U.S. Department of Education, 2013). A full copy of Alabama’s ESEA flexibility request and additional information is available on the U.S. Department of Education website.

Alabama Education News. (2011, January/February). Raising expectations: Common core standards in Alabama. Alabama Education News, 34(4), 1–2. Retrieved from

Alabama State Board of Education. (2013). Alabama plan 2020 ESEA flexibility request. Retrieved from

Alabama State Department of Education. (n.d.). ALSDE: Student assessment. Retrieved from

U.S. Department of Education. (2013). Alabama. [Interactive map of state ESEA flexibility]. Retrieved from

Longitudinal Data Systems

Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems Grant Program
Alabama has not, to date, received a Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) grant from the National Center for Education Statistics (U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, n.d.).

View all of the states that have received an SLDS grant at the National Center for Education Statistics website.

Longitudinal Data System Policy Initiatives
Alabama takes the following steps to effectively use longitudinal data systems:

  • “Create progress reports with individual student data that provide information educators, parents, and students can use to improve student performance
  • Create reports that include longitudinal statistics on school systems and groups of students to guide school-, district-, and state-level improvement effort
  • Develop a purposeful research agenda and collaborate with universities, researchers, and intermediary groups to explore the data for useful information
  • Promote strategies to raise awareness of available data and ensure that all key stakeholders, including state policymakers, know how to access, analyze, and use the information” (Data Quality Campaign, n.d.)


Data Quality Campaign. (n.d.). State analysis responses by state: State actions. Retrieved from

U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics. (n.d.). Grantee states [Interactive map of grantee states]. Retrieved from

Secondary and Postsecondary Alignment

PK–16/–20 Council
Alabama established the Governor’s College and Career Ready Task Force by Executive Order 36 on January 15, 2013. Task force members include the governor, lieutenant governor, speaker of the house, senate pro tempore, and secretary of commerce. Others appointed to the task force include representatives of primary and secondary education, postsecondary education, and the public- and private-sector business community.

The council’s primary focus is on making recommendations to the governor to improve the state’s PK–16 public education system. The council is not a decision-making entity (State of Alabama, 2013).

State of Alabama, Office of the Governor. (2013). Executive order no. 36. Retrieved from

High School and College Alignment


High School Graduation Requirements

College Admission Requirements

English Credits:



Mathematics Credits:

4.0 (including Algebra I and geometry)

3.0 (Algebra I; Algebra II; and geometry, trigonometry, or calculus)

Social Studies Credits:


4.0 (including world history or a comparable course)

Science Credits:

4.0 (including biology and physical science)

3.0 (including two courses with laboratory experience)

Foreign Language Credits:

None specified

1.0 (see Additional Credits)

Arts Credits:



Additional Credits:

7.5 (physical education [1.0], health [0.5], computer applications [0.5], and electives [5.5])

(recommended to be in fine arts or computer literacy, and/or additional courses in mathematics, natural sciences, and foreign language)

Total Credits:




Alabama High School Graduation Examination

Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) or ACT®


Alabama Department of Education

The University of Alabama





Additional Resources
  • Achieve summarizes Alabama’s policies on college and career readiness standards, assessments, and accountabilities on this website
  • The Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University assesses the progress of Alabama in addressing the high school dropout challenge on this website.
  • The Lumina Foundation maintains a database of state progress toward meeting the goal of ensuring at least 60 percent of adults in each state have college degrees or higher by 2025. Data on educational attainment for adults across Alabama and in each of the state’s counties is available on this website.
  • The Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) maintains the State Higher Education Policy Database, which includes information on accelerated learning options, student financial aid, and other policies enacted by Alabama and its legislature on this website.