AP Exams FAQ's

Advanced Placement (AP) Exams


What are AP Exams?

The AP Exams are national assessments designed to measure students' mastery of college level content taught in specific Advanced Placement courses. Each AP course curriculum and exam are developed by a committee comprised of college faculty and experienced secondary AP instructors for the College Board.

Who takes the AP Exams?

AP Exams are administered primarily to students enrolled in AP courses at course end. Students enrolled in AP courses are highly encouraged, but not required, to participate in the AP exams for their respective AP courses.

When are the AP Exams administered?

The AP Exam assessment window generally occurs during the second and third weeks in May. The College Board determines dates for each AP course exam within that testing window.

How long are the AP Exams?

Each AP Exam is administered in one testing session that is approximately three hours long. For some AP courses, the exam consists of submission of a portfolio rather than a written examination.

How are students scored on the AP Exams?

AP Exam scores are determined as a result of a weighted combination of the multiple choice section and the free response section of the exam. Multiple choice questions are scored by computer. Free response sections that require students to write an extended response are scored against a rubric by teams of assessors. The total number of points earned by a student is converted to a score on a scale of 1-5. Scores of 3 or higher are considered as demonstrating mastery of the content and skills.

Can a student earn college credit for an AP Exam score of 3 or higher?

Each college or university sets its own guidelines for granting placement or credit based on AP Exam scores. Parents and students should consult the guidelines of the colleges or universities for which students have interest in enrolling to determine the specific requirements for AP Exam credit.

How do I access my student's score on the AP Exams?

The College Board provides AP Exam scores through their website in July. Students will receive an email advising them when and how to access their scores.

Where can I find more information about the AP Exams?

College Board - AP Exam Site