Advice for Dealing with AP Exam Schedule Changes

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In today’s episode of “College Admissions Real Talk”, Dr. Legatt discusses AP Exam schedule changes and how to work with them.

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VO: Welcome to College Admissions Real Talk with Dr. Aviva Legatt, a podcast for students seeking to get admitted to top-tier colleges. Each episode will feature an important tip for your college admission success, delivered with candor and love. If you’ve ever wanted to take a peek inside the mind of a college admissions officer, this is your chance. Have a question? Text Dr. Legatt at 610-222-5762. So, what’s your dream school? 

AL: Welcome to College Admissions Real Talk. This is Dr. Aviva Legatt, founder and Elite Admissions Expert at Ivy Insight and author of “Get Real and Get In”. Today, we’re going to talk about advice for the changes in the AP exam schedule. So before we talk about the changes to the schedule, Let’s talk about the APs in general for the AP exam. If you’re not already signed up, you want to see if you can sign up for an exam. If you’re taking a related subject right now, I would highly consider taking the relative AP exam. This is because if you’ve listened to my previous episode of the podcast about the elimination of SAT II exam AP exams will essentially replace SAT IIs. So, if you’ve prepared, well, this academic year in one or more subjects that have a relevant AP test, I would highly suggest you look into what at tests are available for you and when you would take them. Looking at the exam schedule itself, there are three different administration periods. One administration period takes place in early to mid-May so sometime between May 3 and May 17. The second administration takes place either in school or at home sometime between May 18 and May 28. and administration three takes place in school and at home sometime between June 1 and June 11. If you have any say in the schedule that you get, I would suggest sitting for administration one which would allow you to take your exams in school. In case you missed it last year, the AP exams were plagued with technical problems and some students had trouble completing them or submitting them at the end. My advice, if you can take it in person in your school, that will be the most secure way to ensure that your exams go through. But I don’t want you to worry about this too much because the truth is you can only control what you can control and if you have to take it at home, you’ll probably be fine. The previous error only affected relatively few students to the whole. The important thing to know also is that the schools are going to make the decisions about which exams are offered. If you’re thinking of sitting for an exam, you should check in with your school to make sure that your school is offering it. And if they’re not offering it, make alternative arrangements to get this exam taken. I also want to show share that paper and pencil exams are still given. If you know that you are a better test-taker on paper versus on the computer, definitely see if you can get accommodation. There are a number of ways that students can document the need for accommodations. It may require the assistance or evaluation of an outside professional or the advocacy of a parent. But it could be really well worth it if you feel comfortable sitting in the room in person and taking that exam in the way that is easiest for you. I know I would do better with a paper exam, personally. Digital exams are going to be available for many subjects in administration two and administration three. So again, if your school isn’t giving the exam that you want or they’re not doing exams in-person you should be able to schedule something between administration two and administration three, which again covers May or mid-to-late. (I should say, and early June to mid-June). The second piece of advice I would give is that when you’re looking at the exam schedule, there may be a possibility that you can’t sit for administration one. Administration two you actually have to sit for administration three, which could take place after school lets out, which would be a real bummer because summers are supposed to be a break. That said, one way that COVID has stretched us, whether for good or for bad, is that we’ve learned to be flexible to adapt our schedules. In this regard, though I would suggest that any summer plans you make have options on where you can complete them flexibly and on your own schedule. Even if it’s just an online course, make sure that it’s something that you’re excited about and that you know you can fit in regardless of when your exam administration takes place. Finally, make sure that if you do have to take the digital exam that your computer is working well and that you are well set up for success on the exam day. There are simple setup steps that the College Board will provide, and you definitely want to do a good tech check and a rundown and have a backup option for internet connectivity if your internet happens to go out on that day. So AP exams are stressful but necessary part of preparing for college. I hope that the tips that I’ve provided today help you make things a little bit easier.

VO: College Admissions Real Talk is hosted by Aviva Legatt, edited by Stephanie Carlin, and produced by Incontrera Consulting. I’m Caroline Stokes and this has been your daily boost of college admissions insight. Have a question? Text Dr. Legatt at 610-222-5762. For more information on Dr. Legatt and Ivy Insight visit www.ivyinsight.com. And you can pick up Dr. Legatt’s book, “Get Real and Get In”, at major retail outlets across the world. Insight out.