Jul 6, 2010

Your AP Scores are Ready When You Are

In case you’re dying to know, Advanced Placement (AP) scores have been available since July 1st. For a measly $8, you can hear your 2010 exam scores by using the automated Scores by Phone service. The line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-888-308-0013 (toll free in the US, US territories, and Canada). You will need to have your AP number (found in the Student Pack), social security number, date of birth, and a credit card.

Hey it’s a bargain relative to some of the other charges you can rack up with the College Board.

But if you can wait, scores will arrive in your mailbox some time in the next couple of weeks. Reports will also be sent to the college or university designated on your answer sheet (for graduates only) and to your high school. Each report is cumulative and includes scores for all the AP exams you have ever taken, unless you requested that one or more scores be withheld or canceled.

Although most score reports are sent by mid-July, some take longer to process because of problems with identification information or test administration. Contact Score Reporting Services if you haven’t received scores by September 1.

And what do the scores mean? AP exams are graded on a scale of 1 to 5:

• 5: Extremely well qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
• 4: Well qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
• 3: Qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
• 2: Possibly qualified to receive college credit or advanced placement
• 1: No recommendation to receive college credit or advanced placement

The five-point scale can also be thought of in terms of letter grades with 5 equating to an “A” and 1—well, you get the picture.

And what are they worth? The awarding of credit and placement status is determined by individual colleges or universities. You can check directly with the school or on the College Board website to research this information. In most cases, a student who scores a 4 or 5 will receive college credit. In rare cases, a school may require a 5, and almost no colleges will accept a score of 2. In fact, the most selective schools will not accept a 3 for credit.

For example, George Mason University will accept a 4 or 5 for credit in specified courses, but will go as low as a 3 for languages, Music Theory, Human Geography, and Computer Science. Georgetown University will award no credit for any score below a 4.

AP exam scores may also be used to meet standardized test requirements in the admissions processes of several colleges. Fair Test keeps track of this evolving trend on its Test Score Optional List and includes Furman, Colby, Middlebury, and NYU among those colleges and universities allowing AP’s to be submitted in place of ACT/SAT scores.

So you can call or wait—your choice. It doesn’t make a bit of difference.

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