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PV Offers AP Psychology as One of Several New Rigorous Courses

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Kylie Tedeschi '19
22 October 2018


The 2018-2019 school year brings many new opportunities for students at Passaic Valley. Academically, students are now being offered several new Advanced Placement/college-level courses to challenge and prepare them. One of these new additions is AP Psychology, taught by Mrs. Geraldine Volonnino.AP Psychology 7th period class; photo credit: Kylie Tedeschi

AP Psychology, similar to the other AP courses offered at Passaic Valley, is designed as a college-level course that provides students with an in-depth, rigorous education throughout the year to prepare them for the AP exam in early May. If students perform well on the exam, their chosen colleges may provide them with credits.

Mrs. Volonnino was chosen to teach the course due to her passion for the psychological sciences, as well as her qualifications. She received her bachelor's degree in Psychology from Montclair State University and wishes to carry her knowledge and love of the subject forward to her students. "I really enjoy teaching psychology," said Volonnino. "The class offers many opportunities for the students to do 'hands-on' learning in which they conduct in-class demonstrations.  It's a great way to learn concepts and it makes learning fun."

Looking ahead towards the rest of the school year, Mrs. Volonnino is eager to delve into the application of the fundamental psychological concepts her students have learned. The students are eager as well. "I'm really enjoying it so far," said Jessica Lameiras '19. "I'm fascinated with psychology and being able to break it down into categories I've never known before is so interesting." 

Mrs. Volonnino also looks forward to preparing her students for the AP exam in May. Being such a rigorous course, much of the responsibility also lies on the students to ensure their preparation if they wish to perform well on the exam. "I think that any student that takes the course seriously and puts forth good effort will do well on the exam," said Volonnino. "Of course, I am implementing proven strategies [through psychological research] to improve student learning and memory." 

For students who are interested in the subject of psychology but are unsure of the level at which they wish to study, there is another option. Human Behavior is still offered as an introductory-level psychology course, challenging students as it presents new information. "The student must decide which course would be appropriate for them," commented Volonnino. "I am always available to talk to students if they need personalized direction."