Image of student painting

Distinguished Achievement Program

The Distinguished Achievement Program (DAP) is for students who wish to complete an advanced high school program in the fine arts. Students who wish to have the accomplishment recognized on their transcripts must take the courses outlined in Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 74.13, and must achieve any combination of four of the following advanced measures. The measures focus on demonstrated student performance at an outstanding level. Student products must go through an external review process. The advanced measures are as follows:

1) Original research/project (may not be used for more than two of the four measures) that is:

2) Test data where a student receives:

3) College courses in which a student receives a grade of 3.0 or higher on courses that count for one college credit, including tech-prep programs.

For original research/projects, students independently design proposals, conduct in-depth research, prepare products and/or findings of professional quality, and present their work in formal presentations for evaluation by a panel of experts. The components of all projects are based on the Fine Arts TEKS. Students benefit from work with mentors who are recognized experts in the project’s area of study. The project proposal, which requires the teacher of record’s approval at the outset of the project, is a detailed plan that:

DAP participants in the fine arts demonstrate original thought, expressiveness and insightfulness, and college- or professional-level technical skills and knowledge. Students must produce original artwork and keep a journal or sketchbook to fulfill the research component of a DAP project. Highlights of the research are shared with the audience and panel of experts during the final presentation. Research may include resources such as:

Self-reflection and self-assessment of the project are as important as the formal evaluation. The student, teacher of record, and mentor should assess the project at designated intervals and following the formal presentation. Progress should be recorded in journals or sketchbooks. Students practice self-evaluation, analysis of information, synthesis of findings, and justification of conclusions. Students should make recommendations for future work and suggestions for other DAP participants. It is crucial that panel experts base their evaluations on the criteria defined in the project proposal and that opportunities for discussion follow the formal presentation.

The project is complete when all components of the contract have been fulfilled, the work has been evaluated and accepted, the recommendation has been made to award a distinguished achievement measure, and the teacher of record has recorded a grade.