2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Do AP Exam Scores Matter To Colleges?


I’m currently a sophomore in high school and am preparing to take my first AP exams (APWH and AP Computer Science Principles). In both classes, I have gotten an A (96.5%+), but I’m still very nervous as to what would happen if I fail an exam.

I am not as worried for my AP world history exam but, since I want to major in computer science, I’m really worried about not getting a 4 or a 5 on my AP computer science principles exam (as this might look bad to colleges).

I know this will not factor into my GPA and that I can simply not report those scores to colleges, but will not reporting a bad score be detrimental to my application? I’m just a little worried.

Thank you!


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2 answers

Accepted Answer
2 years ago[edited]

The simple answer is do your best and hope for the best. If you get a 3 or less, you probably won't want to report it anyway so you really have nothing to lose. Colleges don't assume that you got a 1 or 2 and that's why you are not reporting it.

If you are only a sophomore, you have plenty of APs to make up for it in the future.

An AP in my opinion is 3/4 the grade you get and about 1/4 the test score if you get a 4 or a 5. There are people that take 10 APs but only submit 5 test scores and that's perfectly fine if they are all 4s and 5s.

Good luck.

2 years ago

AP scores do not matter a great deal to colleges. Colleges mainly look at AP scores for two reasons - to determine how challenging your classes were and to give you college credit. A low AP exam score despite an A in the class would show that your teacher did not make assignments difficult enough to prepare you for the exam, which reflects badly on them rather than you.

It will not look bad to not report a score. In any case, it is only worth reporting one if you score high enough to receive college credit. Hope this helps!

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