What to Know for AP Exams

The first two weeks of May bring about every AP student’s favorite time of year: AP exam season. This year, AP exams will take place from May 1 to May 5 and from May 8 to May 12. The schedule for when each specific exam will be held can be found here. 

All of the exams will be on the school’s campus this year, so there is no need to worry about commuting to a different location to take your test. Most of the exams will take place in the library, but there are a few exams with overlapping times. In the case that the exams are scheduled for the same time, the exam with fewer people taking it will be held elsewhere; the locations of these exams are not yet finalized, but all locations will be confirmed by email prior to the exam. 

Because there will be exams held in the library for the entire two weeks, there will be a “mini library” set up in room 2409 from May 1 until May 12. There will be tech support, limited book checkout, and printing available if needed.

Almost all of the exams will take place either at 8 AM or 12 PM. The only exception to this rule is the Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism exam on May 9 at 2 PM. These are the exam start times, but you should arrive at least thirty minutes before the test starts, to ensure that everything starts on time and ends in time for the next test to start on time as well. If an exam starts at 12 PM, students taking that exam will need to find a way home. The 12 PM tests will not finish in time for normal afternoon school transportation, so alternate arrangements must be made. If you are absent for an AP exam, there are three makeup dates: May 17, May 18, and May 19. The specific schedule can be found here, Taking your AP test counts for attendance for that day, so students who have an exam at 8 AM  can leave after the test is over, and students with a test at 12 PM do not have to arrive until 11:30 AM.

All students taking an AP exam should have gotten an email earlier this week with a link to a Google Doc with testing information and another link to a Google Form that everyone taking a test must fill out. It is important that this is filled out as it confirms that you know the date and time of the exam, as well as whether or not a calculator is required. For any non-course-specific questions regarding your AP test, the best way to ask them is by replying to the email. For any questions directly related to the subject or structure of your test, you should ask your teacher directly. You will receive another email within a day or two of your exam, confirming the date, time, location, and other specific information about the test you are taking that day. Be sure to consistently check your email in the lead-up to your test, so you do not miss any important information.

On the day of the test, there are items that you should and should not bring. All of these are very important, so be sure to follow these instructions, otherwise, it could lead to your dismissal from the test and a cancellation of your scores. On the day of the test, remember to bring No. 2 pencils, pens with dark blue or black ink, an acceptable calculator if your test requires one, a ruler if you are taking a Physics exam, a watch without internet access that does not make noise (this is not required, just suggested for easy timekeeping purposes), and if needed, a College Board Accommodations Letter if you need testing accommodations. On test day, you should not bring non-No. 2 pencils or mechanical pencils of any kind, phones and other electronics, notes, books, highlighters, White-Out, colored pencils, scratch paper, computers, non-approved calculators, ear plugs, clipboards, food, or drink. The full list of approved and unapproved items, as well as the calculator policy, can be found here

There are many good ways to study for an AP exam if you need a refresher from last semester or if you feel less confident in certain areas compared to others. There are videos both on Youtube and videos that the College Board specifically puts out for each subject. You can also go over notes from class, attend a study session, study with a group of friends who are taking the same test as you, or log into AP Classroom to see if there is anything there that you can review.

On the day of the test, be sure to eat a good breakfast and get a good night’s sleep the night before. Arrive at school thirty minutes before the test is scheduled to begin, make sure you have all the materials you need to be successful, check your email, and then do your best.

AP exams may seem intimidating, but they are just tests. They cannot hurt your grade, and there is no need to stress too much about them. That being said, do your best and show what you know. Good luck, Cougars!

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