Learn About the AP Program

Learn More about AP

A Head Start in High School

Taking AP courses and exams gives you a chance to earn college credit, advanced placement, or both while in high school. This head start offers many advantages once you’re in college.

Benefits of Taking an AP Course and Exam

The extra effort you put into an AP course is definitely worth it. Consider these benefits:

Save Time and Money:

Your AP score could earn you college credit, advanced placement, or both before you even set foot on campus. Earning college credit or advanced placement can free up more time in your schedule for courses you’re interested in or give you a chance to graduate early. In fact, most AP students who enroll in four-year colleges start school with some credit.

Stand Out to Colleges:

Most high schools offer a boost to students who complete an AP course and exam. Check with your school counselor for more information.

Prepare for the Future:

Research shows that students who take AP courses and exams have better college outcomes than their peers. Taking AP develops skills such as time management, critical thinking, scholarly writing, and independent study that will help you succeed in your current classes, in college, and beyond. Sharpening these skills will make your transition from high school to college easier.

AP Course Difficulty

AP courses offer the opportunity to study a subject in depth at the college level. Most AP courses are similar to first-year college courses and are usually more challenging than high school classes. Resources like the following can help you stay on track:

AP Exams

When you take an AP course, you have the opportunity to take the corresponding AP Exam in May*. AP Exams are given over a two-week period in early May. Whether you’re taking an AP course for the first time, have experienced an AP course before, or are gearing up for your last AP class as a senior, completing your course by taking an AP Exam always has benefits. Many states, districts, and schools pay for some or all AP Exams. Learn more about AP Exam fees and getting a fee reduction.

Check out these blog posts to learn more:

You’ll register for an AP Exam through your school. Students now commit to take their AP Exams in the fall because schools have a registration deadline in mid-November.

*Please note: Although we recommend taking the AP Exam after taking an AP course, it isn’t required.

Enrolling in an AP Course

There are 39 AP courses, but each high school chooses which courses to offer. Talk to your school counselor about enrolling. Check out these tips on how to pick AP courses.