Calculus AB is designed to be taught over a full high school academic year. It is possible to spend some time on elementary functions and still cover the Calculus AB curriculum within a year. However, if students are to be adequately prepared for the Calculus AB examination, most of the year must be devoted to topics in differential and integral calculus. These topics are the focus of the AP Exam.
Before studying calculus, all students should complete four years of secondary mathematics designed for college-bound students: courses in which they study algebra, geometry, trigonometry, analytic geometry, and elementary functions. These functions include those that are linear, polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, trigonometric, inverse trigonometric, and piecewise defined. In particular, before studying calculus, students must be familiar with the properties of functions, the algebra of functions, and the graphs of functions. Students must also understand the language of functions (domain and range, odd and even, periodic, symmetry, zeros, intercepts, and so on) and know the values of the trigonometric functions of the numbers 0, pi/6, pi/4, pi/3, pi/2, and their multiples. (Taken from College Board web site http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/sub_calab.html?calcab )
Download the Course Description for Calculus AB
AP Calculus AB Course Home Page from the College Board
AP Calculus AB: Curricular Requirementshttp://www.collegeboard.com/html/apcourseaudit/courses/calculus_curricular_requirements.html