Despite the chaos many have been going through during these few months, due to COVID-19, students have much more on their minds than normal. AP exams are yearly tests that students take to prove their readiness for college. These exams are usually held in May, and are 3 hour long tests that students spend months preparing for. Towards the end of July, AP exam scores were sent out to all students who took these tests. Some students did well, while others may not have performed their best academically. Therefore, many students are worried about their academic performance and chances of getting into their dream college.
The format of these AP exams followed the same guidelines throughout the many years. However, because of the coronavirus, AP exams were modified into 45 minute, at home tests. This chang was very controversial among students. Many argued that a 3 hour test should not be deduced to 45 minutes, while others stated that at home tests would allow for cheating. However, Collegeboard allowed for this drastic change in AP exams; therefore, students had to comply with these new rules. Students now had to not only worry about having internet access, but also if they were capable of learning all the information that would be tested on, at home.
Two months after taking the test, AP exam scores were available for students worldwide. Many did well, however, there were some students that could not show their full academic potential on this online test. For these students, I want to express that this year’s AP exams, or AP exams in general, don’t have as much significance as one might think. According to Prepscholar, “AP exam scores aren’t going to be a major make-or-break factor in whether you get into a college or not.” High AP scores are definitely helpful for college admissions, but students should not get too worried about their scores. There are other, more important factors, such as GPA, SAT or ACT scores, extracurricular activities, and teacher recommendations. If students did not do well on an AP exam, they can show colleges their worth by taking SAT subject tests or other exams to make up for this. Many colleges let students self-report their AP scores; therefore, students have the option of not putting failing scores on their applications. In addition, Collegeboard allows students to cancel or withdraw their scores before sending them to colleges. Students should definitely be worried about their grades and exam scores, however, it is not a matter of life or death.
Personally, I am a bad test taker and have extreme anxiety when it gets close to AP exam season. I am aware that many students get anxious and even depressed because they couldn’t academically perform their best during these exams. However, I wanted to share this message of hope to students that are worried about their AP exam scores and college admissions. It is important to do well in school, however, your mental health is the utmost priority.