2021 AP Test both in person and online

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Alec Zierlein ’22

Every AP course typically has its own test in May, when traditionally everyone takes the same test at the same time on the same day. But things have changed in the past two years.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the College Board has decided to create an additional, online version of the AP tests that will be administered in late May or early June for students who cannot take the standard versions (which are being administered at Stake Jesuit in the first two weeks of May). Many public schools across the nation still aren’t at full capacity, so the College Board isn’t expecting all students to be able to take the test in their schools.

A problem is that these students may be able to cheat if they are at home with other devices around. However, the College Board has prepared for this. 

“College Board has a new platform that will recognize if students are veering away from their web browser,” Strake Jesuit AP Coordinator Jeff Fuller said.

The application, LockDown, locks the screen, rendering the device useless for anything besides taking the test. Still, cheating might be easier than normal, but if anyone is caught, his or her scores will be thrown out, diminishing the incentive to cheat.

Another issue is the difficulty of the test in comparison to previous years’. “Last year’s test was probably a little easier,” Mr. Fuller said, referring to the 45-minute online AP tests of 2020.

“However, this year the test is just as rigorous as in previous years,” Mr. Fuller said, so online students should not count don’t count on an easier exam in 2021.

The AP tests have been very different in these past two years, but things are heading back to normal.