Friendly Reminder: AP Stands for Advanced Placement, Not College Admissions

Over the past several days, students across the country found out their scores from the AP exams they took in May. Regardless of how well they did, students want to know what role these scores play in the college admissions process. Do they matter? What if you don't do as well as you had hoped? Will they make a difference?

The worrying is at an all-time high. I got more phone calls, text messages, direct messages, and emails from students and parents over the last few days about AP scores than any other topic ever. I don't want AP scores or colleges dictating a student's worth. Therefore, here are five things you need to know right now about APs.

1. AP stands for Advanced Placement, not "College Admissions."

The original intent of these exams was and is to give students advanced standing or credit at the college where they plan to enroll.

2. Since AP scores are NOT required for admission, students can choose to report these scores or withhold them.

I always tell my families that "no score" is better than a "low score" on an application.

READ MORE: The A through Z for Understanding the AP

3. If admissions officers assume that a student didn't share their AP score because it was low, let them!

They can't judge you on information that is inaccessible to them and not required


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4. Self-reported scores on the application are sufficient.

The only time an official score report from the College Board is required is if the student wants to get advanced standing/credit for these scores to count towards their college degree. So save some money and skip the official report for the application process.

5. Check your official high school transcript.

Some high schools print the student's AP scores (and all other standardized tests) on the transcript whether you want them there or not. 

LEARN MORE: Facebook Live Q&A Recap on Standardized Tests

Do admissions officers want to get their greedy hands on AP scores even though they are not required for admission? They sure do. But just because they want something, doesn't mean they get it. Ah, the irony! You have a choice when it comes to submitting AP scores and everything else. Choose wisely.