Advanced pressure

Each spring, AP testing adds stress to an already busy end of the school year, but students and teachers agree the outcome is worth the extra effort


Beth Brackmann

AP tests always happen as the school prepares final projects, graduation and final exams, adding stress to a stressful time of year. But for many students, AP tests are worth it.

Bri Quast, Staff Writer

AP testing time can mean extra stress on seniors who are already stressed out. From finishing up their college to-do lists, to last minute tests they have to do before school ends, the end of the year places a burden on a lot of seniors. 

AP exams, short for Advanced Placement exams, are exams people take in order for an AP class to be considered a college credit at your college. Passing above a 3 on the AP exam demonstrates that one was able to master the college level material they were taught in the class, and the class credit is then transferred over to their college as a college level credit. 

Kole Christoff and Jillian Galuszka are both students signed up to take AP tests, including AP Comparative Government and Politics, AP Literature, AP Biology and AP Calculus. 

“If they’re going to a university that takes AP scores then I think that extra college credit is worth it,” Christoff says. “It’s good to take those classes in high school and get them as a college credit so that way you can just get them over with, and take classes in college you would rather take instead.” 

Galuzka adds, “I think if you are going to college it really depends on your major. Not everything can be taken for credit, which you should keep in mind when deciding what test you should take. However even if that class can’t be taken for credit, it still looks good for colleges and shows them course rigor.” 

AP testing shows course rigor, but with the rigor comes the stress and difficulty of such high level testing.  

“The stress of preparing for it is the worst,” Christoff says. “When you’re taking it, it’s such a long period of time when you’re just sitting and writing and answering questions. It’s also hard due to the fact that you have to fall back on all the knowledge you accumulated over the year.”

“It’s difficult to recite all of that information in the writing questions. The [AP Lit test] is the hardest because you can only study your strategies for writing, not actual questions you’ll need to know,” he adds. 

English teacher Peter Kim believes AP testing is essential to better prepare a student for college. He says, “AP testing is stressful, but I think if students are looking to go to college those stressors will exist when they go, and they won’t be able to escape them. It’s better to learn how to deal with those stressors now in an environment where you’re given extra support.”

AP testing is an extra load of work at the end of senior year, but if one is looking for less stress in college then AP testing may not be a bad idea. For underclassmen AP classes speaks volumes on a college application, AP tests or not. On top of taking the AP tests there is also a $93 fee, but Christoff and Galuska say if you’re willing to put in the effort to study for the tests then the outcome should be worth taking them.