Conditions change for AP tests due to COVID-19

2020 AP tests will be taken online

Belle Wilson, Managing Editor

These last few weeks have raised questions for educational systems from all over the nation as the overall look of school suddenly has changed.

Concerned students, teachers, and parents to the College Board have asked, “What about Advanced Placement testing in May?” This was a prominent question because students work hard all year to earn college credit; parents pay around $100 for each test, and teachers work hard to teach and review all of the material in order for students to do well on the test.

It was announced on March 20 that the AP tests would be conducted from the safety of a student’s own home and on any device, and the test would also be shortened to only 45 minutes. Depending on the AP class, the test will be only on certain material, not the entire curriculum.

However, this does not apply to students taking Art and Design such as 2D and 3D, Computer Science Principles, Drawing, Research, and Seminar.  These students will not take online exams. AP scores for these courses will be based on students’ work submitted from their digital portfolios.

Dr. Paul Lazor who teaches AP Psychology commented that he thinks his class is “in pretty good shape as the absence of snow days allowed us to move along very well in the curriculum.”

Dr. Andrew Ketchum, AP Biology teacher expressed that he’s worried that “students may be less-prepared for the AP tests due to less face-to-face time, and for me the inability to do all the required labs.”

On April 3rd, the layout of the test will be outlined by the College Board. Additionally, they will announce which two dates the AP tests will be administered.

The exam questions will be designed in ways that prevent cheating. College Board announced that they will use a range of digital security tools and techniques, including plagiarism detection software to protect the integrity of the exams.

AP Chemistry teacher and Science Department Chair Dr. Julie Baker added that she hopes “that our students will be able to take the test at a later date so that they can have more time to review before the test.”

The College Board made it clear that when speaking to universities, they are open to accepting the test in exchange for college credit because of these special circumstances.

AP teachers like Dr. Baker are trying “to carry on like we would have done at JC.”

She explained that so far her students have “watched videos of my notes with me talking to them just like I would in class.  They did some practice AP questions like we would have done in class.”

Dr. Lazor added that “there happens to be a lot of interesting, well-done videos which students can watch.”

With these videos he is, organizing “the information around logical topics where the students read the material, augmented by videos.”

Additionally College Board will be supplying free live review sessions for each AP class by teachers from around the nation.

One thing that Dr. Baker pointed out was that, as a teacher, she “greatly misses” the day-to-day interactions with her students and that talking to them on Teams has “lifted her spirits.”