The Student News Site of Mercer Island High School

The MIHS Islander

The Student News Site of Mercer Island High School

The MIHS Islander

The Student News Site of Mercer Island High School

The MIHS Islander

Pros and cons of taking the AP test



Achieving a high score on an AP test gives a student potential college credit towards their future university.  This will allow the student to skip basic, introductory classes in order to take higher level classes during their freshman year.

  • AP test coordinator Ms. Chvany claims that the tests could save you thousands of dollars in college.  It either frees up your schedule in college and gives you time to focus on the classes you enjoy, or it means that you can graduate ahead of time.

The tests can be utilized as preparation for future standardized tests.

  • Senior Carlino Cuono advocated for the AP tests, claiming “If you take them in your junior year, it prepares you for subject tests.”

It is also often the natural next step after taking a full year of an AP class.

  • “I think for a lot of us it was just kind of a natural step forward – not really for the AP credit in college” said junior AP Calculus student Paige Robertson.

A high AP test score is also a good resume booster when applying to colleges.  Claiming a 4 or a 5 on an AP test is very appealing and can bolster the academic side of a college application.

The score is helpful to get feedback on your current skills and see what areas you need to improve upon in college.

  • “I encourage all of my students because it is good to get feedback from these judges. The art portfolios come from all over the world and there are hundreds of qualified and knowledgeable art professors and teachers so it is really cool to get feedback. And there are two judges for each portfolio” said AP Photography teacher Laura Totten.
  • Senior Brooke Fitzwilson, who plans on taking the AP Calculus test, also remarked that it is beneficial to see how well you do on the AP test after taking a full year of the class.


Not every college or university accepts all AP tests and they may be specific about the actual scores they accept as well.

  • “It is hard because colleges lose money with AP exams, so fewer of them are taking the credit.  I think it is still worth the personal achievement of taking the exam” said AP test coordinator Ms Chvany.

The tests themselves are rather expensive at $93 per test.  This can get even more costly depending on how many AP classes a student is enrolled in.

The tests range from three to four hours, proving very exhausting and draining especially for students who have to take more than one in a day.

Skipping the introductory classes may not be helpful for students planning on majoring in that subject

  • “Personally, I am not all taking all of the AP test for all the classes I am in, especially for science classes because many recommend taking the intro classes in college instead of skipping them with AP tests” said Senior Nikita Marcou.
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