"Compass offered a personalized and targeted
approach that met our daughter's busy schedule.
They not only helped with SAT and ACT,
but also with time management and strategy on
all AP Tests. Our daughter went from panic to
acceptance to her dream school!"

- Jamie R, Mother of Rebecca
12th Grader at La Cañada High School

AP Exam Tutoring

With today’s heavy course loads and numerous extracurricular activities, even the highest-achieving students can sometimes find themselves in need of assistance. High achievers themselves, Compass instructors can relate. And help. Over half have completed post-graduate work in fields of study built on the concepts taught in AP courses. From English Literature to Environmental Science, we have a tutor for that.

See below for a summary of what’s to come with the 2021 AP Exams. Click here for a recap of the 2020 AP Exams.

Give us a call at 800-685-6986 for more information or to set up a tutoring program that fits your needs.

2021 AP Exams

College Board has created a complex calendar of in-school and at-home testing in an effort to make AP Exams fully available to students this spring. Some schools are choosing to have students take AP Exams at home because of the certainty it provides. Schools, not students, make the choice on exam schedule and format. High schools need to finalize plans with College Board by April 1, 2021, so you should be able to find out from your teacher or AP Coordinator how and when you will take your AP Exams.

The test content and length will be largely the same whether you are testing at-home or in-school, with paper and pencil or on the computer. The 2021 APs will be nothing like those given last year. They are full-length exams that will feel similar to the tests and quizzes you’ve practiced on in class. Because of test security concerns, world language exams and Music Theory will not have an at-home option.

Use the following toggle panels to expand the schedules for each administration window. See key differences between the digital and paper-and-pencil exams below.

Administration Window #1: May 3–May 17

All exams given during the first administration window will be completed in school and on paper. The exams will begin at 8 AM, 12 PM, and 2 PM local time. Exams previously scheduled for Thursday, May 13th will now be given on Monday, May 17th.

Date8 AM Local12 PM Local2 PM Local
Monday, May 3, 2021United States Government and PoliticsPhysics C: MechanicsPhysics C: Electricity and Magnetism
Tuesday, May 4, 2021Calculus AB
Calculus BC
German Language and Culture
Human Geography
Wednesday, May 5, 2021English Literature and CompositionJapanese Language and Culture (computer based)
Physics 1: Algebra-Based
Thursday, May 6, 2021United States HistoryArt History
Computer Science A
Friday, May 7, 2021Chemistry
Spanish Literature and Culture
European History
Physics 2: Algebra-Based
Monday, May 10, 2021French Language and Culture
World History: Modern
Macroeconomics
Tuesday, May 11, 2021Seminar
Spanish Language and Culture
Latin
Psychology
Wednesday, May 12, 2021English Language and CompositionMicroeconomics
Music Theory
Friday, May 14, 2021Biology
Italian Language and Culture
Chinese Language and Culture (computer based)
Environmental Science
Monday, May 17, 2021Comparative Government and Politics
Computer Science Principles
Statistics

Administration Window #2: May 18–May 28

At-Home/In School, Digital Exams

These exams will begin at 9AM and 1PM Pacific time. Please check with your school’s AP coordinator to confirm the local start time.

Date9 AM Pacific1 PM Pacific
Tuesday, May 18, 2021English Literature and CompositionComputer Science A
Wednesday, May 19, 2021European History
United States History
Art History
Macroeconomics
Thursday, May 20, 2021United States Government and Politics
World History: Modern
Psychology
Wednesday, May 26, 2021English Language and CompositionComputer Science Principles
Seminar
Thursday, May 27, 2021BiologyEnviromental Science
Friday, May 28, 2021Comparative Government and Politics
Human Geography
Microeconomics

In School, On Paper Exams

These exams will begin at 8 AM and 12 PM local time.

Date8 AM Local12 PM Local
Friday, May 21, 2021Italian Language and Culture
Japanese Langauge and Culter (computer based)
Latin
Spanish Language and Culture
Chinese Language and Culture (computer based)
French Language and Culture
German Language and Culture
Music Theory
Spanish Literature and Culture
Monday, May 24, 2021Calculus AB
Calculus BC
Physics 1: Algebra-Based
Physics C: Mechanics
Tuesday, May 25, 2021Chemistry
Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
Physics 2: Algebra-Based
Statistics

Administration Window #3: June 1–June 11

At-Home/In School, Digital Exams

These exams will begin at 9AM and 1PM Pacific time. Please check with your school’s AP coordinator to confirm the local start time.

Date9 AM Pacific1 PM Pacific
Tuesday, June 1, 2021English Literature and CompositionComputer Science A
Wednesday, June 2, 2021European History
United States History
Art History
Macroeconomics
Thursday, June 3, 2021United States Government and Politics
World History: Modern
Psychology
Monday, June 7, 2021English Language and CompositionComputer Science Principles
Seminar
Tuesday, June 8, 2021Comparative Government and Politics
Human Geography
Microeconomics
Wednesday, June 9, 2021Calculus AB
Calculus BC
Physics 1: Algebra-Based
Physics C: Mechanics
Thursday, June 10, 2021Chemistry
Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
Physics 2: Algebra-Based
Statistics
Friday, June 11, 2021BiologyEnviromental Science

In School, On Paper Exams

These exams will begin at 8 AM and 12 PM local time.

Date8 AM Local12 PM Local
Friday, June 4, 2021Italian Language and Culture
Japanese Langauge and Culter (computer based)
Latin
Spanish Language and Culture
Chinese Language and Culture (computer based)
French Language and Culture
German Language and Culture
Music Theory
Spanish Literature and Culture

Digital Portfolio Submission Deadlines

The submission deadline for Digital Portfolios is 11:59 PM Eastern.

Date11:59 PM Eastern
Thursday, May 20, 2021AP Art and Design
Thursday, May 20, 2021AP Seminar and Research
Thursday, May 20, 2021AP Computer Science Principles
How digital testing will work

Students testing at home — or at schools that choose to provide on-site computers — will use a new College Board program referred to as the “digital exam app.” The program will work on Windows and Mac PCs and on school-managed Chromebooks. Students are not able to take a digital exam on a tablet or smartphone. A practice version of the digital exam app will be available in early April. College Board has promised that all testing accommodations will apply to both paper-and-pencil and digital exams. To minimize submission errors, the digital exam app will auto-save students’ responses as they work and will automatically submit responses at the end of the testing period.

Similarities and differences between digital and paper-and-pencil exams

Content, structure, and scoring are similar across exam formats. Some differences have been introduced, however, in order to keep the exams fair.

For example, College Board was concerned about maintaining the integrity of the long essay question (LEQ) on the digital version of the U.S. History Exam. The LEQ has been removed from the digital exam and been replaced with two additional short answer questions (SAQs). Also, students taking that digital exam will not be allowed to choose from among SAQs.

On the digital exams, questions have been written so that students do not need to produce graphs or complex symbols. This will mean some differences between exam formats in subjects such as Calculus and Statistics.

A number of STEM and Economics exams have “no calculator” sections on the paper-and-pencil versions. Instead of trying to police at-home calculator use, College Board has constructed the digital exams so that calculators do not provide an unfair advantage on those sections. The AP Calculator Policy still applies.

Students taking exams on the computer will not be allowed to go back to previous questions. They will have to make a decision about when to lock in an answer and move on. Timing practice is essential.

Learn what is on your test

Students should check the latest information on exam format on AP Central. Students taking U.S. History on the computer, for example, do not need to worry about practicing LEQs and can focus their time on multiple choice, SAQs, and the document-based question.

Scheduling differences

Paper-and-pencil exams will be given in the traditional manner, with students taking the exams at school on local time (8:00 AM and 12:00 PM). Digital exams, on the other hand, will begin simultaneously across the globe (12:00 PM EDT and 4:00 PM EDT). Chinese Language and Japanese Language exams are the only exception. While they are computer-based, they are taken in school on the paper-and-pencil timeline.

Credit from colleges

Because the 2021 APs are so similar across formats, we do not expect colleges to distinguish between digital and paper-and-pencil or between at-home and in-school when looking at AP Exam scores for admission review or course credit or placement.

What Do AP Scores Mean?

Because they cover many of the same subject areas, students and parents sometimes confuse AP exams with SAT Subject Tests. It is important to note that, while students can earn college credit for posting strong AP scores, AP exams are not admission tests per se.

What do AP scores mean? The College Board defines 3 as “qualified” to receive college credit, 4 as “well qualified,” and 5 as “extremely well qualified.” Ultimately, however, the answer varies from college to college. Some schools give credit for a 3, while others require a 5. Some of the most selective schools don’t give credit for any score. The one generalization we can make with confidence is that failing to post a 3 or better is likely to place a student in the bottom half to bottom third of his or her peers nationwide.

AP Exams – May 2019

AP Test
Tests Taken
% at 5
% at 4
% at 3
% at 2
% at 1
% at 3 / higher
ALL EXAMS5,098,81514.320.125.222.817.559.6
ART: HISTORY24,47611.924.626.624.712.263.1
BIOLOGY260,8167.222.235.326.68.864.7
CALCULUS AB300,65919.118.720.623.318.358.4
CALCULUS BC139,19543.018.519.513.95.281.0
CHEMISTRY158,84711.516.627.523.021.455.6
CHINESE LANG. & CULTURE13,85360.114.914.84.06.289.9
COMPUTER SCIENCE A69,68526.721.921.011.918.469.6
COMPUTER SCIENCE PRINCIPLES96,10513.821.037.118.89.371.9
ECONOMICS: MACRO146,09119.123.016.914.926.258.9
ECONOMICS: MICRO91,55124.328.117.212.018.469.6
ENGLISH LANG. & COMP573,1719.918.226.231.214.554.3
ENGLISH LITERATURE380,1366.215.727.834.316.049.7
ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE172,4569.425.714.125.425.449.2
EUROPEAN HISTORY100,65511.720.525.929.412.558.1
FRENCH LANG. & CULTURE23,24916.125.335.718.24.777.1
GERMAN LANG. & CULTURE5,16021.024.227.219.58.272.3
GOVERNMENT & POLITICS COMP23,52222.424.419.218.715.366.0
GOVERNMENT & POLITICS U.S.314,82512.912.429.824.820.155.1
HUMAN GEOGRAPHY225,23510.818.220.116.734.149.1
ITALIAN LANG. & CULTURE2,65813.618.134.424.69.366.1
JAPANESE LANG. & CULTURE2,47945.312.421.67.713.079.3
LATIN
6,08313.019.330.524.113.062.9
MUSIC THEORY18,86421.217.924.523.512.863.7
PHYSICS 1161,0716.718.220.528.725.945.4
PHYSICS 223,80214.221.030.226.28.465.4
PHYSICS C: ELEC. & MAGNET.25,34237.622.612.716.610.473.0
PHYSICS C: MECHANICS57,13137.726.717.410.08.281.8
PSYCHOLOGY311,21520.525.318.713.522.064.5
RESEARCH15,72410.722.243.019.54.675.9
SEMINAR43,4417.115.158.916.62.381.1
SPANISH LANG. & CULTURE187,13325.234.229.49.51.888.7
SPANISH LITERATURE29,3459.525.037.721.46.372.3
STATISTICS219,39214.718.426.619.321.059.7
STUDIO ART: DRAWING21,76920.833.337.07.81.191.1
STUDIO ART: 2-D DESIGN37,74921.031.534.010.82.886.4
STUDIO ART: 3-D DESIGN6,04010.022.437.525.74.370.0
US HISTORY496,57311.818.423.422.024.353.7
WORLD HISTORY313,3178.618.828.028.815.855.3

Learn more about what AP test scores mean here.

Learn more about schools’ credit and placement policies here.

Success Stories

We began working with Compass when our oldest daughter was a sophomore to get her more prepared for the SAT. From the start, they and their tutors have exceeded all expectations. My daughter enjoyed meeting with the tutors and gained more tools, tips, and practice than we could ever have hoped for. We were so pleased that we engaged Compass to work with our younger daughter and in both cases their scores and confidence improved immensely! My opinion of Compass and their tutors is so high that when my daughter sought help for her AP Calc BC class, I immediately reached out to Compass, and they connected us with the perfect tutor. They have proven to vastly differentiate themselves from any other tutoring or SAT prep organization. They are worth every penny and I can’t recommend them more highly!

Susan T, Mother of Sasha, 11th Grader at Palos Verdes High School

We are so grateful for all you did to help Crystal understand how to study with dyslexia and be the best student she could be. Your tutors were exceptional and so caring about Crystal's needs and challenges. The good news - she has gone on to graduate with honors and will attend her first-choice university. Thank you so much!

Jen T, Mother of Crystal, 12th Grader at St. Francis High School

Our three kids each attended different high schools and had unique strengths and challenges. We used Compass for tutoring for the ACT for all three kids, and also for some supplemental math tutoring for our daughter. Each of our kids' ACT scores improved dramatically as a direct result of the Compass tutors’ guidance. And our daughter’s understanding and achievement in her school math class also improved noticeably. Perhaps best of all, Compass managed to match our kids with tutors who perfectly fit each of our kids’ unique personalities and learning needs, in addition to being talented, courteous, and reliable. And the Compass directors and office staff were always accessible, attentive and responsive. A 100% pleasant and positive experience all the way around.

Jan L, Mother of Andrea, 12th Grader at Marin Catholic High School

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