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Why AP's Still Matter

January 21, 2020

If you’re in high school and taking AP courses, you may just be taking them to boost your GPA. However, if you earn a passing score on any of your AP exams, it’s likely you’re able to receive college credit for that course which means there’s one less class for you to take in college.

Each college has their own rules about what score is needed on specific exams to earn the respective college credit, but you are likely to earn credit with a passing score of 3 or higher. Often, some colleges even make you send your official AP scores to their admissions office for consideration, so it’s important to not just blow it off the exams.

Senioritis is real, I get it. That being said, make sure to keep up with all of your classes because college acceptances can be and have been revoked due to seniors checking out during the last semester of their senior year. This is even more true for AP classes. While there is an exam at the end of each AP course, you still receive a letter grade in those courses each quarter. This grade in turn affects your GPA and transcript and colleges will see that. 

Getting AP credit also can save you a lot of time and money in college. Since the AP exams are used to “test you out” of college courses, you receive credit for the class, but it’s credit that doesn’t count against your excess credit counter. For example, I took 8 AP classes throughout high school. Because of my varying scores and college’s rules, this resulted in me learning at orientation that I was already coming into college with 30 credits, technically considered a sophomore, just from AP credits! So, I had tested out of 30 college credits, but it doesn’t show on my excess credit counter, meaning I have an extra 30 credits of wiggle room to take whatever classes I want or even retake a class if things go wrong without having to worry about hitting 120 credits and paying double the price. Some students use this extra credits room to make a double major easier or to minor in multiple areas. This can save you so much time and money in the future and have knowledge that you can apply to future classes. 

If you’re capable of taking AP classes and exams, take as many as you comfortably can. It can save you so much time, money, and stress later in college. Still, don’t stress about it too much, make sure to still enjoy your senior year!