More High School Graduates Are Taking AP Exams, Scoring Higher
The number of high school graduates taking AP exams and test scores increased in 2012 according to the College Board’s annual AP report released yesterday.
32.4% of high school graduates from the class of 2012 took at least one AP exam, up from 30.2% in 2011. The number of students scoring at least a three, with five as the maximum score, also rose with 19.5% of graduates scoring a three or higher in 2012, compared to 18% in 2011.
The College Board noted that with the increased participation came an increase in the mean score, which, according to Trevor Packer, the board's vice president for Advanced Placement, is contrary to typical education trends where the mean score usually goes down with more participation.
With more students taking AP exams and scoring a 3 or better, which is usually a high enough score to get college credit, it brings up the debate on whether or not AP courses and exams properly mimic college-level classes. More and more schools have recently announced that they moving away from giving course credit for AP exams.
While the promise of college credit is an allure for students to perform well on AP exams, it’s important to remember that colleges and universities also take these courses and scores into account when reviewing applications. The rigor of your course and an upward grade trend, among many other factors, is important to admissions officers, so it’s important for students to continue to challenge themselves even if the school they want to attend will not give course credit for APs.
If the class of 2012 is any indication, students and parents are increasingly seeing the value in AP courses and exams!
What do you think about the upward trend of AP participation and exam scores?