Advanced Placement

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The Advanced Placement (AP) program is directed by College Board[1], and used in most American high schools.

There are currently 37 AP exams. After a student completes a course, he may take the AP exam in that subject. The AP exams are typically offered on specific dates in the month of May. High schools usually weigh a student's grade in an AP class on a 6-point scale instead of the normal 4-point scale or 5-point Honors scale. The AP exams are graded on a 5-point scale. Most colleges and universities will offer college credit for exam scores of 3 or higher, depending on admission policy.

In order for a course to be designated "AP", it must go through the College Board's AP Course Audit process. Schools develop their own curricula for courses labeled “AP”; the AP Course Audit specifies a set of expectations established by college and university faculty for college-level courses. Courses that meet or exceed these expectations may be authorized to use the “AP” designation.[2] Homeschool educators may also use this process in order to label their courses "AP". [3]

Jerry Jessness wrote:

No student, not even a star athlete, can negotiate a higher grade on an A.P. exam.[4]

List of AP Exams


  2. AP Course Audit Information[1]
  3. AP Central: Frequently Asked Questions[2]
  4. [ Why Johnny Can't Fail: How the "floating standard" has destroyed public education