AP Exam Changes

AP Exams, AP Changes, AP Examination Changes

AP exams are getting an overhaul. More analytical thinking, less memorization.

In breaking education news, AP exams will be getting a makeover over the course of the next three years. If you happen to be a student who is overwhelmed by the amount of material that requires rote memorization on AP exams, you’re not alone. And the College Board, the makers of AP exams, will be making AP exam changes in order to incorporate more analytical thinking and less memorization. The Latin, U.S. History, French Language, World History, German Language, Spanish Literature, and Biology exams will all be affected.

Many students, teachers, and college professors do not believe that AP courses and AP exams are comparable to college courses. Many argue that the AP exams don’t measure depth of analysis but rather just how much one can possibly memorize. Although the exam for AP Calculus may suffice, the World History exam, for example, doesn’t necessarily test skills that are needed to succeed in college courses. According to the Dean of Undergraduate Admission at Stanford University, Richard Shaw, “Frankly, while AP is good preparation and a strong foundation in general, many of our faculty and departments do not view it as comparable to courses here.”

Even the IB exams emphasize writing and analytical thinking more so than do AP exams. IB exams stress short answer responses as compared to the emphasis on multiple choice questions of AP exams. And while many do have issues with AP exams, they do serve as a measuring stick when comparing students’ performances at vastly different high schools. Let’s wait and see the precise changes the College Board implements on the AP exams. What kinds of changes would you like them to make? Let us know your thoughts by posting below!

Check out our post on Advanced College Placement and our newsletter on AP Exams. And take a look at the Stanford Daily article — Advancing the Placement Test.


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