In May of 2012, two million high school students took 3.7 million Advanced Placement tests. Out of the 14.8 million high school students in the U.S. in grades 9 through 12, 18% passed at least one Advanced Placement exam with a minimum score of 3 on a scale of 1 to 5. Ten years ago, only 7% of high school students in the U.S. passed at least one Advanced Placement test with a minimum score of 3.
While 18% of the high school students in the nation is certainly a significant number, and while this number has grown substantially in recent years, it is those students who take more than 6 Advanced Placement tests and score a 4, or 5 on those exams by the time they apply to college who may have an edge in gaining admission to the college of their choice. So why is this? Well, basically because colleges have little way of knowing the rigor of a high school’s curriculum and the scores that students earn on Advanced Placement exams help to even the “score” and standardize the process.
Although we can easily say that by junior year it’s great if you can take at least 6 Advanced Placement courses, students and parents all too often tell us that there aren’t 6 Advanced Placement courses that they are permitted to take at their high school, if in fact their high school offers these AP courses at all. They may say that only seniors are allowed to take them, or that there are no Advanced Placement courses offered to freshmen and sophomores and by junior year they’re only allowed to take a limited number of Advanced Placement courses.
If this is your reason for not taking Advanced Placement courses throughout high school, don’t think colleges will be understanding. It doesn’t really matter whether your high school offers these courses. What does matter is that you take these exams. Just like you don’t take a course in school for the SAT or the ACT, you don’t have to take a course for a particular Advanced Placement exam. Instead, all you have to do is study the curriculum for the exam and take the test! With Ivy Coach’s tutoring, you can master the Advanced Placement exam in whatever discipline that interests you. We have excellent tutors for all of the Advanced Placement exams offered and our tutors work with students around the world in online meeting rooms. As an added benefit, the sessions are recorded so that they can be accessed at your convenience.