Concerns Regarding a Specific AP Score (& Whether or Not to Submit It)

Hi everyone. I really hope this doesn’t come off the wrong way, as it’s a genuine concern of mine that has been on my mind nonstop ever since AP scores were released.

I got a 4 on my AP English Lit exam. In general, I know a 4 is good and would submit it without hesitation. That being said, my class took a “practice AP exam” (which was actually an AP exam from a previous year) and I scored almost 100% on it, a.k.a. a 5. I didn’t feel I struggled on the actual AP exam and I was shocked (and devastated, to be honest) that I had only gotten a 4.

Even so, this typically wouldn’t bother me much. The issue is that a huge aspect of my college application is my passion for writing. I’ve written a novel and multiple poetry collections. I’m a straight A student (save for a B in Chemistry) and I’m applying to multiple top-tier schools, my first choice being UPenn.

My concern is that by submitting a 4, rather than a 5, that whole part of my application will seem less valuable and genuine. Whereas if I choose not to submit the score at all, they could assume even worse – like that I had gotten a 1 or a 2.

I’m really not sure what to do. Any advice would be appreciated.

Go ahead and self report the 4 if you are self reporting other AP scores. A 4 is great and plenty of people are accepted at top tier schools without all “perfect” AP scores. Your other accomplishments will shine.

Remember, the scoring process on the practice test was not the same as the process for the actual test. The scores on the AP Lit and AP Lang tests seem hard to predict due to the readers, prompts, etc… some students who excel in class and on practice tests just do not pull things together for the prompt and sometimes there will be a surprisingly high score for someone who had seemed to struggle.

One happy thought, this time next year, you will already be accepted somewhere that is a great fit for you and when scores come out for any AP classes you take senior year you will hopefully score high enough that you get credit for it or get to take the next level class if you want to.

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Submit. It will have zero negative impact….eleven at top schools. The bigger impact is whether it will be accepted.

It neither impacts or diminishes your love for writing.