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Is there a curve on AP exams or are they graded statically?

Quick question – my friends are saying that AP exams are curved. Is this true, and if so, how does that work exactly? Does it vary from one AP subject to another?

8 months ago

Hi there! Great question – this is something that can indeed be a bit confusing. AP exams are not 'curved' in the traditional sense that individual test scores are adjusted based on how everyone performs each year. Instead, the College Board uses a process called 'equating,' which ensures that scores are consistent across different test administrations and different years. This means that an AP score reflects a standard level of achievement, no matter when or where the test is taken.

The process of equating can indirectly create what seems like a curve because it adjusts for the difficulty of the test version each year, but this is based on a pre-test assessment of the questions, not the actual performance of the students in any particular year. That's why some years, certain scores may be more or less common, but that's due to the test's difficulty level rather than a curve. This process applies to all AP subjects, so it's consistent across the board. Hope that clears things up for you!

8 months ago

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