Last year I did pretty well on my AP exams (one 3 but mostly 4’s and 5’s), and I expect to do about the same this year after taking english lit, calc AB, physics, gov, and macro. I’m definitely not happy with the 3 and I’m afraid this score will hurt me on my college applications. I’ve read some posts saying that not including all your scores on the common app looks really suspicious to colleges since I took the AP class. Other people have mentioned a 3 looks bad and should be left off. Anyone have any advice about this?
My older sister didn’t even take the exams for some of the AP classes she took so they showed up on her transcript but she didn’t have a score to report. I don’t think it made a difference on her applications but its probably different for each school.
My older siblings all took multiple AP tests and didn’t report any of their scores and still got accepted to top schools. Scores clearly don’t matter.
I think you should delete your score especially since you have mostly 5’s on your other exams; there’s a ton of reasons for students to not take AP tests at the end of the year. This advice came from my school counselor who also says that AP scores are definitely on the list of things that colleges consider when reviewing applicants.
Thanks everyone! I’ll probably just leave it off because it has nothing to do with my major so I won’t even need the credit anyway.
Wow I’m soo jealous. I scored a 3 on half of my exams last year, and I will probably get more this year. Do you guys think I should only report my 4’s and 5’s?? I’m super confused after reading all of this.
There is never a requirement to report AP scores as part of your college application. On the Common App, there’s a section to self-report scores, but that’s only if you want to. Reporting scores doesn’t matter until after you are admitted. Colleges likely ask for score reports to determine if you can receive credit or not. Don’t stress about this piece of the application and focus on more significant factors like your essays and resume.
I think it could go either way. Reporting only 5’s makes it seem like you are trying to hide something from the admissions office, especially since they will see the class on your transcript. But I also think that if you took a bunch of AP’s and report most of the scores, they won’t notice a few missing. Or they might even think you did poorly and won’t care since you did well on others. IMO, if you are applying to top schools, I would leave out the 3’s.
Ok cool thanks!
My friend reported all of her passing scores (3 and above) and got into every college she applied to. I think AP scores are one of the last things AO’s consider when reviewing an app anyway so I would just report them all. Also, a 3 is awesome!
I agree. A 3 isn’t a bad score and reporting it won’t hurt your chances of getting into a good school.
Sounds like everyone is pretty divided on this whole thing. I would always sway towards the side of telling the whole truth on your applications and not try to pull a fast one on admissions officers. A 3 is a respectable score so you shouldn’t worry about it cancelling out all of your other accomplishments.
Colleges care more about your actual grade in the Ap class because not all highschools have Ap and most students take Ap tests their senior year after they are already admitted. Also most college apps don’t even ask for any scores to be reported because they probably don’t care.
Just because you took an AP class, doesn’t necessarily mean you took the AP exam. You could leave scores off without raising any red flags.
One score of 3 isn’t going to make a difference on your application because it’s mixed with 4’s and 5’s. It’s worse if you don’t report it because admission’s might think that you scored a 1 or a 2 instead. On the other hand, if you have mostly 2’s and 3’s but A’s in the classes, you should definitely not report those because it’s a sure sign of grade inflation.
The College Board allows you to cancel scores on any AP exam you take. Last year, one of my teachers left my classmates and I severely underprepared for the AP exam, so we all scored 1’s and 2’s. I felt like it was best to delete my score because I didn’t even pass. Now, CB has no record of this score, so it makes me feel a lot better. Like others have commented, some students never even take the AP exam for a class so I don’t think it’s a big deal. A 3 however… you shouldn’t be penalized but if you want to erase it from existence then you can.
A score of 3 on an AP is not a dealbreaker in admissions. You aren’t even required to send your scores. Sounds like you had a hard year so be proud of your passing scores!