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Your Guide to the 2019-2020 AP Exams

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Due to COVID-19, this year’s AP (Advanced Placement) exam will be administered online. Here is what you need to know and tips for acing this year’s exam:

After surveying over 18,000 AP students, Collegeboard will still offer the AP exams this year, giving students the opportunity to demonstrate their hard work in their courses up until this point.

When will the exams occur?

All exams will be taken online between May 11th-May 22nd. Each subject’s exam will happen on the same day, at the same time, worldwide. Makeup test dates will be offered for each subject from June 1st-June 5th. If schools were to reopen, students will be able to take the exams there. For specific subject testing times, please look here.

What will the exams cover?

The exam will only cover content that was taught in class through early March to accommodate students whose schools closed earlier rather than later.

What will the structure of the exams be?

The AP exams will be open-note. This does not mean the exam will be easier! Most exams will have 1-2 free-response questions, where each question is timed separately. The total exam will be 45-minutes and have 5 extra minutes for uploading.

What device should I use for the exams?

You will be able to take this exam on any device you have access to whether that be computer, tablet or smartphone. If there is a computer available, we commend using that, as the screen is the largest! If you do not have access to a device or internet, Collegeboard is requesting that you reach out to them directly, before April 24th.

How should I prepare?

Studying and preparing for your APs is as important as ever. So far, the AP exam is the only standardized test being offered online in the foreseeable future. Of course, this may change as the situation develops.

Utilize the extra time you have at home these days to gradually review the material you’ve read and assignments you’ve completed for these classes. Visit the CollegeBoard website and take advantage of the Exam Preparation materials they’ve provided.

Explore different methods of studying - when it comes to studying, one size does not fit all! Perhaps you’ll benefit from utilizing the Pomodoro Technique or maybe the Feynman Technique! Consider trying out a few different techniques and then stick to the one that works best for you! The way you choose to study can make a big difference in your performance!


The most important takeaway of this article, and the pandemic in general, is to simply do your best. It is rather safe to assume that everyone has been impacted in one way or another, and we are all doing the best we can! Be sure to take care of yourself too. Be sure to get plenty of sleep, eat a well-balanced meal beforehand, and make sure you are in a quiet and comfortable space while taking the exam. If you would like help preparing for your exam, check out Crimson Education’s online tutoring services here. Remember: you’ve got this!

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