Monday, July 20, 2009

AP Free Response

My son has graduated from high school and has been accepted to college so why did he bother to take AP's in his senior year? You see you get your college acceptances at the end of March or the beginning of April and you sit the AP's in May, by which date you are usually already in.

The fact is AP's aren't a requirement for college entry but since they are college level courses, colleges will offer credit for some courses if you score high, meaning a four or five - hence the name Advanced Placement. In some cases students might complete their college education earlier thus in the end it can save you money. Also everyone is doing it so in order to seem just as competitive others join in the fun too. Except that it costs a hefty fee in the first place ($86) and it requires more discipline than you'd wish to exercise in the last month of your senior year; also despite your best efforts you might get a result like fellow SITS member, K who is on her way to college but who is exasperated at The College Board. Here is where she gives, shall we say her "Free Response".

K ruminates on the consequences of her unexpectedly low score on Literature and Composition. If you'd like to have an idea of what K's exam was all about the questions are right here.

Bear in mind that K has until October to challenge her score by requesting that it be re-scored for a fee of $25. That applies to the multiple choice only.

Given K's performance in English previously I think she should have sat the test in her Junior year.

On another annoying note highlighted by K, The College Board does not allow you to access your scores online. You have two options: get them via phone at a charge of US$8 or wait for them in the mail.

Is it any wonder that teachers responded to this poll so strongly at the recent AP conference?

Let us hope that The College Board initiatives will include giving students this option too.

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