Advanced Placement Testing

For most students, taking an Advanced Placement (AP) Exam in May serves as the natural culmination of their AP course experience. Schools wishing to provide this experience to their students should be aware of the different AP Exams available, the responsibilities associated with administering exams, and the exam development processes that ensure college-level learning is being assessed.

Fast facts about AP Exams

  • In 2014, over 4.2 million exams were taken by more than 2.3 million students at over 19,000 high schools. 
  • The AP Program offers 36 courses in a wide variety of subject areas.
  • The majority of U.S. high schools currently participate in the AP Program.
  • Except for the three Studio Art exams, which are portfolio assessments, AP Exams contain multiple-choice questions and a free-response section.
  • Because the College Board is committed to providing access to AP Exams to all students—including homeschooled students and students whose schools do not offer AP—students do not have to take an AP course before taking an AP Exam.
  • The AP Exam fee is $95 per exam, $143 per exam for AP Capstone Exams (AP Seminar and Research). The College Board provides a $29 fee reduction for qualifying low-income students. Most states use federal and/or state funds to contribute to the remaining exam fee for low-income students.
  • More than 3,600 colleges and universities annually receive AP Exam scores. Most four-year colleges in the United States provide credit and/or advanced placement for qualifying scores.

2020-2021 Test Dates
Fees & Fee Reductions
Course & Exam Development