AP Exam Season

Max J. Malit, Staff Writer

AP Exam season is here with exams to be held from May 1st – 12th. AP (standing for “advanced placement”) students have been preparing for these exams for the entirety of both the Fall and Spring semesters of this school year, but just what are the AP exams? 

The AP Exams are annual tests written by the College Board and held nationwide during the first two weeks of May, to measure how proficient AP students are in the college level material they’ve learned over course of the school year, earning them additional benefits heading towards college. 

Dr. Steve Ortiz, assistant principal and organizer of the how and where the AP Exams are held on campus, stated “These AP Exams are given through the AP courses that students take,” further adding, “It gives students an opportunity to partake in advanced curriculum; college level courses that students can take while they’re still in high school.” 

Taking AP courses doesn’t just give students extra points in the eyes of college admissions, passing AP Exams with a score of a 3 or higher (out of 5) as per the scoring guidelines, earns the students college credits, meaning that the high-scoring students can reduce the amount of courses required to graduate college. 

“When students take the AP exam and score a 3 or higher, then that means the student can earn college credit,” clarified Dr. Ortiz, “In the end, that means time and money saved when they go into college.”

The difficulty of the exams should not go understated, with students being pushed to their academic limits on tests normally lasting more than 2 hours, and containing a multitude of both multiple choice and written free-response questions. Accordingly, the teachers of AP courses have been putting forth the effort throughout the course of the school year to make sure the students are prepared for the trial ahead. 

“Each AP course has a list of skills specific to that course, and students learn and practice those skills at a slow and consistent pace from about August to April,” explained Mrs. Cheryl Camacho, teacher of various English levels including AP English Language and Composition, “once the content for that course has been learned, students then practice with the different AP question types and take practice exams consisting of MCQs (multiple choice questions) and FRQs (free-response questions).”