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Nations Students present AP Capstone research projects

Updated: Feb 18, 2020

Seniors share with the school community their research findings

“I realized a lot of research exists on the stigmatization of mental health, but there is little research about the stigmatization of mental health within the school environment. I wanted to research this in our school.”

Senior Letícia Assano explains her research as part of the AP Capstone Program.

“Through my research, I learned that as mental health literacy increases prejudice and stigmatized opinions about mental health illness decrease. People who have read about mental illness or who know someone who has been diagnosed with a mental illness are least likely to have stigmatized opinions,” Letícia said.

AP Capstone is a diploma program designed by the College Board and is based on two, yearlong AP Courses: AP Seminar and AP Research (AP Capstone: How It Works). Students take AP Seminar in Grade 11 and AP Research in Grade 12.

In AP Capstone, students learn and refine skills that are at the core of academic success after high school. The program helps students think independently, write effectively, research, collaborate, and learn across disciplines — essential skills in academics and life.

In the college-level AP Research course, students design, plan, and conduct a yearlong investigation on a topic of their choice.

“I see students rigorously following the scientific method of research. I see their evolution through the course, and I cannot help but feel proud of their work. Students face numerous challenges that help them grow academically,” said AP Research and Spanish teacher, Ms. Elena Martin.

On May 20th, students presented their AP Capstone research projects, sharing with the school community their research design, approach, and findings.

What is AP Research?

In the AP Research course, students continue to develop their research skills acquired in the AP Seminar course by understanding research methods. They employ ethical research practices: accessing, analyzing, and synthesizing information as they address a research question. Students document their processes and curate the artifacts of the development of their scholarly work in a portfolio. The course culminates in an academic paper of 4000–5000 words, a presentation, an oral defense, and, if applicable, a performance or exhibition of the final product.

Topics and Research Questions Seniors Undertook this Year

Effects of Colonization on Latin-American Identity: focus on Ecuador

  • How did colonization affect self-worth in the cultural identity of the Ecuadorian people?

Ideology by camera lens: analyzing the legitimization of violence and authorial intent in the film “Tropa da Elite”

  • To what extent does Tropa de Elite employ traditional film techniques to legitimize the illegal and violent actions of the military police in Rio de Janeiro?

TikTok’s influence on the Chinese teenage population: fame, usage of social media, and the moral code

  • To what extent does the rise in popularity of the Chinese short video app, TikTok, correlate to unethical behavior of the Chinese teenage population and their point of view on fame in relation to the moral code?

Mental Health Stigmatization: an analysis of high school teachers' opinions

  • To what extent does teachers' familiarity with mental illnesses affect their opinions in academic environments?

Disney and the Brazilian Identity

  • How does the constant exposure to popular American children’s cartoons affect Brazilian children's perception of identity and culture?

Violet Evergarden: an anatomy on loss

  • To what extent do Violet Evergarden and similar media healthily portray stigmas of loss and post-combat distress?

Assessing the damage: the possible impacts of invasive marine species on Arraial do Cabo

  • If a large-scale invasion of marine species happened on Arraial do Cabo, what would the effect be?

Teachers and Motivation

  • To what extent do high school teachers at School of the Nations influence their students' intrinsic motivation?

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