Should I pay for all four AP tests?

<p>AP tests are $54 each darling d's school. Since I just wrote a check for $200 to accept her admission to Univ. of TX and a check for $200 to go to Florida with the school choir, I'm reluctant to pay for AP tests in English, Psych, Calc and Spanish Lit. I think that since UT (where there's an 8 out of 10 chance she will go) only requires SAT writing test to place out of freshman English and she is majoring in Psych, what will she gain from taking the Calc and Spanish test?</p>

<p>Or am I just being cheap because I keep writing so many checks to her school that they qualify as a dependent on my 1040 form?</p>

<p>Wow-your daughter's AP tests are $30 less per exam than our S/D in Georgia. If your daughter needs to take the tests to ensure she gets the AP Credit then by all means-pay the money and take the test. If they are not required and D is not interested in seeing how she would do ( or in gaining course credit should she do well) then I would reach the decision with your daughter.</p>

<p>My only word of caution (I have a large thread about AP designation in Parent's forum currently) is to make sure through either teachers or GC that there is no detrimental effect in NOT taking the AP exams. Many schools require kids that take the courses to take the exams-even when course grades are not tied to AP test performance. Congrats to your daughter and your family- UT is an incredible school.</p>

<p>I would write the check. She may get college credit for those tests, and believe me, you can't get 3-5 units of credit for $54 anywhere, not even at a JC. I know kids at UC who qualified for sophmore standing spring semester of senior year, and that meant that they got priority for class sign-ups over the other freshman. </p>

<p>Doesn't matter if she needs Calc for her major, she may be able to use the test as a qualifier for a distribution requirement. And what if she changes her mind and decides to major in Bio instead, or decides that she wants to go to Med School and become a psychiatrist? She'd be sooooooo sorry that she didn't take the AP Calc test and so angry at you for not letting her. </p>

<p>BTW, at my kid's public school in Calif. it's now $84, so you're saving money.</p>

<p>ours are $94 :(</p>

<p>Yeah, there's no reason not to. Even if she doesn't plan on majoring in a field that would explicitly use the APs she's taking, they will often cover breadth requirements she'd have to spend time on otherwise. I took two history APs while in HS and placing out of those two humanities classes made it so I only needed one more to finish my humanities depth sequence, and I was able to take two extra classes within my major that I actually found interesting (well, to me semiconductor processing and solid state physics are much more interesting that medieval history!).</p>

<p>My parents paid for 13 AP tests, 'cause they know that tuition is a lot more expensive.</p>

<p>You're just being cheap, unless you're short of cash to the point that it's a real hardship to pay for the tests, in which case you can get waivers, as I recall.</p>

<p>Just pay for the tests - worst case you waste a couple of hundred bucks, best case your D could test out of a lot more than that worth of credits, or even a semester or two - big savings.</p>

<p>I agree that you should find a way for D to take the exams. It can only provide options for her with good scores. I was enrolled in six AP classes my Senior year. Applied and got into an HYP college. I was so burned out that while I still managed to get all As my Sr year, I didn't take ANY of the AP exams. What a huge mistake that was!!!!</p>

<p>If I had, I would have easily been able to study abroad during my 4 years. I felt extremely limited --- and all b/c I hit a wall of laziness just when the material was MOST fresh in my mind.</p>

<p>I interview now for my alma mater and I always impress upon the students to take EVERY AP test that they feel they're qualified for. </p>

<p>What can D sacrifice here? It shouldn't all fall to you either, IMHO.</p>

<p>If there are no school repercussions for not taking the tests,
and if she has scored high enough on the SAT writing to get credit/exemption,
and if your D is doing well in the other classes,
I suggest paying for the 3 other than English.</p>

<p>No sense paying for a test when she has already earned the credit (D1 decided not to study and take Spanish when she realized her college gave her credit for SAT II scores).
Only pay for tests where anticipated score will earn credits, even if only a distribution requirement (D was thrilled to get PolSci credit for USGov, got one of her social sciences out of the way).</p>

<p>I agree that there may not be a reason to take the APs. The only thing I could add is that some HS don't give credit for the course unless the AP test is taken. That could possibly affect the final transcript that the HS sends to the college. I would check that out before I made the decision. Another instance of how the College Board really is insane.</p>

<p>Would passing the Calc. exam knock out her math (or a least one) of her math requirements at UT? Will she be required to take Foreign language for her major and would a Spanish credit be helpful? My S took 20 AP credits to our big state u., turned out to be extremely helpful .</p>

<p>Pay for the tests. I strongly disagree with tying your decision to the policies of the college she is most likely to attend because she may transfer someday. I have seen people receive AP credit almost 20 years after they took those tests.</p>

<p>There may be all kinds of repercussions at the high school if she doesn't take the tests. The Newsweek rankings are based on how many students take the tests, and every high school in America knows it.</p>

<p>For example, at the high school my daughter attended, only students who chose not to take the AP test were required to take the final exam in AP courses. This was presumably intended as pressure to take the exam.</p>

<p>I agree with the posters that advise you to pay for the tests.
It proved to be very helpful for my older daughter.
Between AP credit and various EC's at her college, she is on target to graduate a semester early....THAT is a big savings for us:)</p>

<p>Pay for the tests. If you really feel it is necessary perhaps you can work out a repayment schedule with her. D1's school course registration process has a pecking order...more credits equals earlier registration. Also helps with placement in housing lottery.</p>

<p>We have to sign a "contract" at the beginning of the school year saying that the student will take the AP test if they are enrolled in the class--I don't know what would happen if someone refused to pay for the test--the kids going to the Ivy League and other elite schools always grumble and complain because their scores don't count at their colleges, but it is important to the high school for the students to take the test--the teachers and schools have invested a lot of time and effort into offering those classes--kids sign-up for them in order to "look good" on their application forms--it's only fair that they do thier part even though, at the end of the year, acceptances have already been determined. Most schools have ways to help pay the cost for students who are truly needy and can't pay for the tests themselves.</p>

<p>At UT (Dallas), your D can earn up to 30 credits (read: fewer classes, or the chance to take more classes she's really interested in) with AP credits....It appears they give quite a bit of credit, even for scoring a "3" on the exams.
It would be really silly for her not to take the tests, especially if she is doing well in the classes. If she were going to a private school that doesn't offer any credit, or if she were failing the high school courses, you might have reason not to pay the fees. However, in your D's case, it seems like a no-brainer to me. Check out the equivalency chart from UT's website....</p>

<p>Office</a> of Undergraduate Education - The University of Texas at Dallas</p>

<p>Pony up the $$$; you may be surprised how many pre-requisites your D may be able to get credit for if she scores high enough on the AP exams. It's money well spent.</p>

<p>My D is at the University of Colorado. She took 6 AP exams in high school and received 4's or 5's on all of them. She got enough college credit to enter school as a first semester sophomore.</p>

<p>From the College Board website re AP Exam Fees:</p>

<p>"Fees
The fee for each exam is $84.</p>

<p>Occasionally, extreme circumstances make it necessary for students to test late using an alternate form of the exam. Depending on the reasons for late testing, schools may be charged an additional fee, part or all of which the school may ask students to pay. Learn more about late testing.</p>

<p>Note: If you are testing at a school that is not your own, the Coordinator may ask you to pay a different fee to recover the additional proctoring and administration costs.</p>

<p>Fee Reductions
Fee reductions of $22 per exam are available from the College Board for students with financial need. In addition, schools forgo their $8 rebate for each fee-reduced exam, making the final fee for these students $54 per exam.</p>

<p>In addition, virtually all states offer exam subsidies to cover all or part of the cost. Learn more about state and federal subsidies.</p>

<p>For internal purposes, such as an audit or invoice verification, a state may request from the College Board the names of its public school students who receive fee reductions; in such cases, the state will agree to maintain the confidentiality of such data.</p>

<p>Check with your AP Coordinator to learn more about fee reductions and state and district subsidies.</p>

<p>Refunds
You may ask for a refund if you do not begin an exam for which you have paid. Local school policy determines the amount of the refund. You will probably be required to pay the $13 fee the school is charged for each unused exam. Once you begin an exam -- that is, write on an exam booklet or answer sheet -- you cannot receive a refund."</p>

<p>At my D's HS, this year, the check for her 6 AP exams ($504) was due October 5, 2007. Course enrollment is contingent on a mandatory sitting for all exams--we both had to sign an agreement. </p>

<p>Evidently, at the OP's school the $54 is the cost of a fee reduction or the result of a state subsidy--good for them--writing that check was painful! </p>

<p>If the colleges you are looking at have "friendly" AP policies and you will likely meet the score standards for credit, it is well worth sitting for the exams. </p>

<p>At the LAC my D will be attending, the most she will get out of her AP's (even with scores of 5) is the foregoing of some Intro courses--no credit or advanced standing given. However, she is so excited by the course catalog, and wants to pursue a double major and a minor, that she will probably exceed the minimum number of credits for graduation--so I guess it doesn't matter. </p>

<p>But is AP worth it anyway? Sure. In many cases, without the rigor of an AP-heavy schedule you won't be competitive for admission to most top schools. Plus, I think it probably prepares you well enough for the rigors of college courses, and at the very least, it can give you a foundation for your course of study.</p>

<p>Ultimately, it's up to the OP, but for what it's worth--I think you really have nothing to lose, and you are lucky to have the lower fee--even if you still think it's a lot to pay.</p>

<p>Good luck. :)</p>

<p>I sympathize that it's hard to keep cranking out those checks senior year.</p>

<p>However, if it lifts your morale, here are the advantages we found from paying for AP exams taken AFTER college acceptances!</p>

<p>1.Better focus at the end of the course to participate in class during review sessions, consequently better individual course grade, better final h.s. GPA. </p>

<ol>
<li><p>They learn and master the material better (see point above). They KNOW it.
This makes all future college courses in that field go better for them.</p></li>
<li><p>Others mention skipping prerequisites in college. (Since OP doesn't predict actual college credits, let's focus on the prerequisites): It is VERY satisfying to skip the Introductory course in a college department. I found those the hardest of all, because the breadth is wide and they move fast. You have to learn how people in that discipline think, the language they use, the approach. Some find intro courses fast-and-shallow, hard to hold onto the content, due to the speed. </p></li>
</ol>

<p>By contrast, if you skip a prerequisite and can start as a freshman in a 200 level course, it might be on a focussed topic, or with a smaller group of students, or with students delighted to be there.</p>

<p>It doesn't sound like much, but skipping a prerequisite can be a joy and make more of kid's time (and your money) as a college freshman. </p>

<ol>
<li><p>Possible AWARD - there's a hierarchy of awards that come to those who take enough courses and score high enough on several. Certificates that say "Ap Scholar with Honors" "...with Excellence" and so on. While some kids pile up awards in h.s., mine didn't (much theater, no sports, hyper-competitive suburban h.s.= no other awards!) So this AP certificate meant a lot to him, gave him an academic award to express on a resume. OK, so we also paid for the frame, but it meant something to us that he'd worked hard and did well on the tests.</p></li>
<li><p>All of the above.</p></li>
</ol>