What's Your "AP"titude? – Part 2
It's May, and starting next week, high school students around the world will embark on two weeks of AP Exams. Recently, we explained what an AP Exam is and who can and should take an AP Exam. Today, our expert counselors explain when and why students should take an AP Exam.
When do I take an AP Exam?
Like SAT Subject Tests, AP exams (administered in the first two weeks of May of each year) should be taken immediately following coursework in a specific subject. If you are successful on these exams you can earn credit for a college class based on your score (usually awarded for a score of "4" or "5", based on each school's individual policy). AP credit has become increasingly appealing as more families weigh the costs of college. By earning college credit while still in high school, students may be able to graduate in fewer than 4 years, ultimately saving money on tuition, room and board. AP exams also offer score withholding, meaning that if you are unsatisfied with a score, you are not required to report it to the colleges on your list.
Why Should I Take an AP Exam?
At IvyWise, we encourage students to choose AP courses that are relevant to their interests and goals. For example, if a student is interested in majoring in business, a college will expect to see that the student has taken or is taking AP Economics and an AP Calculus. Similarly, if you are applying to an arts program, you should definitely take the AP studio art class. College admissions committees want to see that you are taking the most challenging courses available, and they also want to see that you are following through with your stated interests. By taking exams that match your interests, you can showcase your expertise in a particular subject area and supplement your academic record.
Ultimately, when evaluating course load, colleges consider the rigor of your courses within the context of the school’s offerings and the performance of your peers. Two students from two different schools may be taking the same number of AP exams, but one student’s course load might be considered more rigorous given what is offered at the school and how many AP courses other students at that school are taking.
The key to all standardized testing is knowing which tests to take and when to take them and we provide all IvyWise students with a detailed standardized testing schedule. Each standardized testing plan is customized to the student, taking into account which tests match the student’s interests and goals.
While to many students, the preparation for AP exams can be daunting, taking these tests actually provides you with the opportunity to share more information about yourself, your interests, and your level of scholarship to the schools on your list. With AP exams on your academic record, you will be on your way to showing the schools on your list that you can handle college-level work!
To receive your personalized, strategic, standardized testing schedule, schedule an Initial Consultation today!