Many people take the AP exam without thinking about why they’re taking it, but one of the big benefits of taking the exam and getting a good score is not having to pay for the respective course in college.
You can pay $90 for an AP course, instead of having to pay $1000 or more later on in college.
Of course, not all colleges accept all AP exams, and not all colleges give the same amount of credits for every AP exam, so you should check the AP policy of the specific college you’re planning on going to.
Colleges like Brown and Dartmouth don’t give any credit for APs at all, and colleges like Columbia and Harvard, and a couple of others, only give credit for certain AP exams. Some colleges also have certain departments that have different AP requirements than other ones.
For example: at some schools getting a five on the AP computer science exam will get you four credits in the regular college, but only two credits in the engineering department of the same college
If the college you’re going to accepts APs, and you have the chance to take them, then you should consider taking as many AP classes as you can and self studying the ones that you can’t take in your high school to save money on college.
If you read this great article posted on scholarships360 about self-studying for APs you will see that you can save around $19,000 per semester if you take AP exams, and that number is probably even higher today because the average cost of college has been steadily going up for the past few years.
Taking AP exams in high school and scoring a four or five can help you graduate college a semester, or even a whole year earlier, or if in your case you don’t want to graduate earlier, taking more APs and getting credit for them can make college easier as you will have to take less classes every semester.
Imagine having two or three hours per day more to yourself instead of sitting in class and listening to the professor.
Which Exams Should You Take?
Some exams are generally considered to be easier than others, and for some of them you can start studying a week, or even two days before the exam and still get a five.
However, it is recommended to take classes that you’re interested in, as studying for them will generally be easier, and you will actually retain the material.
Exams like Environmental Science, US government, Comparative Government, Psychology, Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, and Human Geography are usually considered easy exams to get a five on.
Some people also consider both of the AP English exams to be easy, but they exams are heavy on reading and writing, and in this case what’s easy for some students might not be easy for others.
We recommend preparing for the easy exams at least a week, two weeks, or sometimes a month in advance. It depends on the exam.
Check out the self-study sections of the respective exams in the books by subject section on our website.