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College Board releases COVID-19 AP exam changes

On March 20th, the College Board announced that the May AP exams were to be moved online due to COVID-19 concerns. In a video uploaded today to the AP Program website, Trevor Packer, head of the AP program, announced new exam dates and details about the all-online AP exams. You can find the full update here and the revised exam schedule here. Here are the key things that AP students need to know.

Test content changes
Because many students are missing valuable instruction time, the revised AP exams will not feature content from the end of each course syllabus. You can see what content will be featured on each exam by expanding the course tabs underneath the exam schedule.

Open-book exams, open-response questions, and other new features
All the AP exams will be open-book, as students will be testing from home, and most of the exams will feature several open-response questions. Language exams will have slightly different requirements, including speaking exercises.

What to expect on the online platform
Most exams will last 45 minutes; students should log on 30 minutes before their scheduled exam time to make sure that they are able to access the testing platform. Students will be able to enter their answers directly into the testing platform, type them up and submit them later, or take a picture of handwritten responses and send them in for grading.

The College Board will send out information to students and teachers about the testing platform and any specific technology needs later this month. Students and educators are encouraged to contact the College Board if they or someone they know cannot access the technology they need to take the exam.

Accommodations plan
The College Board has stated that they are committed to making sure students who are approved for accommodations are still able to receive them in this new testing format. For example, for students who have been approved for extended time, the College Board is working to design the online testing system to automatically provide the approved amount of extra time. The College Board plans to provide details about other accommodations soon.

Extended portfolio submission deadline
Some AP courses, like 2D Art and Design and Computer Science Principles, don’t end with an exam, but with a portfolio submission. The portfolio submission deadline has been extended to May 26th.

Applerouth’s tips for test day
Students who have exams should make sure that they have everything they need before their scheduled exam time; this includes calculators, equation sheets (which can be printed from the course page on AP Central), pencils, textbooks, and notes. Just because the exam is open-book, that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy. Students will still need to demonstrate a thorough understanding of the content covered in the course. In the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing more details and advice to help students be as prepared as possible for this new testing format.

We’re dedicated to keeping you updated on educational and testing changes in the midst of COVID-19.


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