Many benefits arise from taking the AP or Advanced Placement exams distributed by the College Board. For one, students have the possibility of earning college credit. Another benefit is if you meet certain requirements, you may be recognized and given an AP Scholar Award which you may use to cite among your credentials on applications, resumes, etc. Sorry, there is no money involved here.

Here are the possible awards, and their requirements:

AP Scholar:
Students must receive a grade of three or higher on three or more AP Exams on full-year courses.

AP Scholar with Honor:
Students must receive an average grade of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and grades of three or higher on four or more exams on full-year courses.

AP Scholar with Distinction:
Students must receive an average grade of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and grades of three or higher on five or more exams on full-year courses.

AP State Scholar:
This is granted to one male and one female student in each state and the District of Columbia with grades of three or higher on the greatest number of exams (at least three full-year course exams), and then the highest average grade (at least 3.5) on all AP Exams taken.

National AP Scholar:
This is granted to students in the United States who receive an average grade of at least four on all AP Exams taken, and grades of four or higher on eight or more of these exams on full-year courses.

National AP Scholar (Canada):
This is granted to students in Canada who receive an average grade of at least four on all AP Exams taken, and grades of four or higher on five or more of these exams on full-year courses.

AP Department of Defense for Education Activity (DoDEA) Scholar:
This award is granted to the one male and one female student who is attending DoDEA schools with the highest average on the greatest number of AP Exams. Must have a grade of three or higher on three exams on full-year courses.

AP International Scholar:
This award is granted to the one male and one female student attending an American international school outside the U.S. and Canada with the highest average grade on the greatest number of AP Exams. Must have a grade of three or higher on three exams on full-year courses.

Exams which are treated as half-year courses include:
AP Examination grades are reported on a 5-point scale from 1 to 5. This determines how well you performed, as it's curved, as well as whether a college should accept the score and give you credit. It's graded as follows:
5 — Extremely well qualified*
4 — Well qualified*
3 — Qualified*
2 — Possibly qualified*
1 — No recommendation**

  *qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
  **no recommendation to receive college credit or advanced placement

You should know that even if you got a 1 on the AP, it's not the end of the world. Colleges don't see it, unless you show it to them. It's like the SAT's Score Choice System; if you don't want to show your score to college, nobody will make you.

You would want to for a couple reasons:

  • To brag to the Admissions Department how smart you are to take the class and get such a good score
  • To "place out" of a class. If you get a 4 or 5, most colleges will allow you to skip the Introductory classes for the department. If that's all you need, you could skip the requirement (ie. If you need to take 1 english class to graduate, the college will award you credit based on the AP score)

Not all high schools/secondary schools offer AP classes, so colleges will take this into account when you apply, to give you equal chance of acceptance along with students who have the opportunity.

International Baccalaureate (IB) classes are harder, but far fewer schools in the US offer them, though they are popular in Europe.

The Advanced Placement standardized tests are enormous exams written, administered, and scored by the College Board, a curious and distant entity which wields quite a lot of power. The AP tests are usually given in the United States. In other countries the International Baccalaureate is used. In American high schools, many classes, especially for seniors, have "AP" prepended to the name, to indicate that this class will simply consist of studying for the AP test at the end of the year. Wih luck, you will score a 3 or above, which in most schools will give you class credit, permitting more time to sleep in and goof off... AHEM... diverge into subjects which interest you more.

AP Courses:


Note that a lot of these have not yet been noded. They should be! For more info see http://www.collegeboard.com/ap/ . How appropriate is is that the College Board's site ends in .com, not .org?

AP Stories and advice:

Related nodes/nodeshells:

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