How important are AP exams in the admissions process? Should I take any AP tests at the end of the school year?
Colleges and universities usually don’t require students to take AP exams as part of the admissions process. AP exam results are mostly used to qualify students for placement or credit after a student has enrolled with his or her school of choice. Whilst a score of 4 or 5 may earn placement or credit with many colleges and universities, there are a few schools that will don’t give either no matter what a student scores. As a general rule, though, it’s not a bad idea if a student who feels she’s mastered the subject matter requires the exam as a way of probably placing out of a few classes.
While schools might not need students to send in their AP test scores (official results are only required after a student chooses to enroll and qualify for credit or placement), they might take self-reported scores into consideration intended for admissions. A self-reported score on the lower end of the spectrum will more than likely not do a student any favors — neither in the admissions process nor the credit or positioning department. So if a college doesn’t require students to record AP exam results, a student will only want to put his best foot forward when self-reporting. Before publishing, think about the caliber of the institution that you are applying and assess whether your AP scores are in range with its standards.
If a school is going to require standardized screening for admission purposes, they’re usually going to require either the BEHAVE or SAT, and possibly a few SITTING subject tests. Although subject tests cover subject matter that is exactly like the AP test, they do not earn college students credit or placement — they are strictly used within the confines of an admissions decision. The most subject tests a school might require is definitely two. There are very few universities — Georgetown and Johns Hopkins, for example — that recommend , but do not need, students to take three subject exams. Be aware of the testing policies of all the universities on your college list, and be wise in deciding which tests to consider and scores to send.