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Are Low AP Scores an Elite-College Deal-Breaker?

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Replies to: Are Low AP Scores an Elite-College Deal-Breaker?

  • nac7890nac7890 Registered User Posts: 132 Junior Member
    Thanks @Sally_Rubenstone but if I don't report the score wouldn't colleges assume I bombed the test, which would be a logical conclusion seeing as I got a C? And if so, wouldn't that somewhat devalue my 2nd semester A?
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @nac7890-Admission officials are barely going to spend nanoseconds looking at your AP results. And, for World History, they will only look at your final grade in the class, whether that was an A or some version of a B. If you prefer to keep the AP score on your list of results, that's fine, but what I was saying before is that it won't matter if you leave it off. The admission folks will not be wondering about it or hunting for it. That might be the case for other tests/scores (e.g., AP Calc or science taken in junior or senior year) but they really aren't going to be giving any time to a 10th grade history exam. So whatever you decide to do with it is really fine and won't affect your admission verdicts one bit.
  • cr_02cr_02 Registered User Posts: 69 Junior Member
    I was in an AP Chemistry class with about 15 other students (my school is kind of small since it is private). Of those students, all got a 1 except for one student who got a 2. I knew our teacher was horrible and asked our counselor if I could not take the test but I was forced to. I had a 110 average in that class with weight and was awarded a highest average award at our end of the year school assembly.
    I would just ask someone to mention it in a letter of recommendation but I don't really have a person that it would be relevant to as my counselor left last year and I don't really know my new counselor (who will be there my senior year).
    Will colleges will know that I did my best by looking at my transcript and my award or will I still be penalized.
    PS: I have gotten 4s on the other three AP exams that I took.
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @cr_02 -Even if you don't really know your new counselor, it wouldn't hurt for you to explain the AP Chem situation to him or her and ask for an explanation of the teacher's deficiencies and low class exam scores to be sent to colleges. If it doesn't happen, it's not a big deal, but many counselors are willing to explain extenuating circumstances like this one in their letters.
  • bhavyad2018bhavyad2018 Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    I'm an incoming junior who took AP Physics 1 as a sophomore. I got a 2 on the exam, however, & I'm not sure if I should self study and take the exam again or if I should just not send in that particular score. I want to major in biochem & next year I will be taking AP Chem, AP Bio, AP Spanish, & AP Physics 2. What should I do?
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @bhavyad2018 - My vote would be for you to work hard in AP Physics 2 and hopefully perform well on the test. A good score on that exam will override your 2 in Physics 1. If your Physics 2 score is good, you can actually just send that one and not the Physics 1. But if you do poorly on Physics 2 as well, you really can't ignore BOTH test scores. But let's hope that you aren't facing that decision, and that's a bridge you can cross when you come to it.
  • ming3282ming3282 Registered User Posts: 14 New Member
    edited July 2016
    Hello, like bhavyad2018, I am also an incoming junior who took AP Physics 1. I took the class during my freshman year and it was extremely easy. I didn't bother to study at all and ended with a 2. (By the way I am a first generation student and an immigrant, so I didn't really know about ap exams.)

    My sophomore year, I took AP Bio and World History and got a 4 on both. I only study a month before the exams and now I really wish I studied more. I am going to take 4 AP classes junior year year and 5 more senior year, hoping for 5s.

    Anyways, my question is would my best option be retaking the AP Physics 1 exam? I'm pretty confident I'd do well if I actually study. I'm also thinking about taking Physics C senior year if it matters.

    Thank you in advance.
  • SeinfeldFan1SeinfeldFan1 Registered User Posts: 688 Member
    There's no way that they really could.
  • sneharamssneharams Registered User Posts: 119 Junior Member
    @Sally_Rubenstone So I want to go to a very very top school for computer science. I got 5s in Calc AB, Stats, Lang, Computer Science (self-studied, and in 3 days btw haha). I got 4s in APUSH, Physics 1, and Physics C: Mech (self-studied). And finally I got a 3 in Gov... I got consecutive As for all of my classes. In your opinion, should I send in my Gov score or not (keeping in mind that government has nothing to do with my intended major at all).
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @ming3282 -It sounds like you've got a lot on your plate and my advice would be to NOT try to self-study for an AP test for a class you took as a freshman. Instead, take Physics C as a senior if possible and don't even report your Physics 1 score, if you do. (I realize that colleges won't see your Physics C score before they make their decisions but, even so, omit the Physics 1 score if you're taking Physics C.)

    You can also take the Physics Subject Test in your senior year so the colleges will have THAT score before making a decision about you.
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @sneharams -The Gov score will not be consequential in your admission outcomes. Feel free to omit it, but it won't hurt you if you include it.
  • sneharamssneharams Registered User Posts: 119 Junior Member
    @Sally_Rubenstone thanks! Do you think that if I don't include it, they will think I received a 1 or a 2 though?
  • Sally_RubenstoneSally_Rubenstone CC Admissions Expert Posts: 3,628 Senior Member
    @sneharams -Yes, it's possible that the college folks might assume a 1 or 2 if you don't report the 3. Chances are more likely, however, that they won't read the list of scores all that carefully to compare them to the AP classes you took. Even so, there's no shame in a 3, and if you were my child I'd suggest that you report the 3.
  • sneharamssneharams Registered User Posts: 119 Junior Member
  • ming3282ming3282 Registered User Posts: 14 New Member
    @Sally_Rubenstone I think I will just take AP Physics C senior year, but should I cancel or omit my AP Physics 1 score?
This discussion has been closed.