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AP tests determine post high school credit

Completing a college course early may seem desirable to some, until they must take a 3-hour test.

The Advanced Placement (AP) tests for calculus, English and U.S. history, will be taken May 7-9. Students enrolled in an AP class are required to take the test.

?The AP test is designed so that if you pass, you get college credit,? Michael Fenton, AP calculus teacher, said. ?Even if you don?t pass, you?ll be the top student in your college calculus class because you will know so much going in.?

AP testing is scored out of five points. Most colleges consider a three an acceptable level of achievement. Two versions of the AP calculus test exist according to difficulty: A-B and B-C.

?If you pass the A-B test, you get one semester or four college units,? Fenton said. ?If you pass the B-C test, you can receive eight college units or a full semester. We took the A-B test this year, but I hope to administer the B-C test next year or possibly the year after.?

AP U.S. history teacher Jon Hall believes the exam prepares students for college.

“The AP exam tests the student’s analytical skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the concepts, issues, and problems in United States history,” Hall said. “The course and exam prepares students for intermediate and advanced college courses by making demands equivalent to those of a full year college history class.”

To combat the difficulty of the tests, Hall organized study sessions to prepare the students.

“We have had multiple study sessions outside of class,” Hall said. “It is extremely demanding and requires much study time from the students.”

Junior Adam Casuga takes advantage of the study sessions to ease stress.

“I have been doing everything to prepare for this test,” Casuga said. “I’ve read the material, gone over past tests and attended study sessions with Mr. Hall. The test seems really daunting and overwhelming and I want to do well.”

Anita Rahman, ’08, shared Casuga’s stress, but was calmed after finishing the AP calculus exam.

“The test was pretty normal compared to regular school tests,” Rahman said. “I am a nervous person so I don’t think I did very well, but I’m sure I’ll pass it.”

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