Kaplan Test Prep Survey: College Admissions Officers Say Applicants Who Complete and Do Well in AP® Courses Have an Admissions Advantage

Mark Your Calendars: Kaplan Will Hold Its First Ever Free, Live Online Prepathon Events for AP U.S. History and Biology on April 22-23

 Register at www.kaptest.com/APPrepathon

Note to editors: Kaplan is a subsidiary of Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC)

Press Contact: Russell Schaffer, russell.schaffer@kaplan.com, 212.453.7538
Twitter: @KapTestNews, @KaplanSATACT

New York, NY (April 4, 2017) — Kaplan Test Prep’s most recent survey of college admissions officers from 361 of the nation’s top-ranked schools finds that 78% give an edge to prospective students who complete and perform well in Advanced Placement (AP) courses compared to those who don’t*. Within that 78%, 20% describe that edge as “significant,” while 36% consider it a “moderate” edge and 23% say it’s a “slight” edge. When asked about why AP courses can play such an important role in the application process, admissions officers shared several insights, including:

  • “Students who take APs tend to do better in their courses over all, so that tends to indicate that they’ll be able to adapt to the college level work.”
  • “We want to see that students are taking challenging courses and doing well, but if you’re taking challenging courses and not doing well, that may be indicative of your ability to do well at the college.”
  • “We take a holistic approach, but we give moderate to significant edge because we want to see students taking challenging courses, so it’s a plus, but if students don’t have access to AP in their schools, they won’t be penalized.”
  • “Students shouldn’t just take an AP to have an edge and then get a C. They should
    take the course that best fits them.”
  • “Doing well gives an applicant a higher chance of being admitted into the honors program.”

According to recently released data, 1.1 million high school students from the Class of 2016 took at least one AP exam, up from 645,000 a decade earlier. Public colleges and universities in at least 20 states, including most recently Nevada, Illinois and Texas, are required to award credit to students who score well on AP exams — a score of three out of five possible points is the common threshold. In other states, it can vary by school.

To help students get ready for two of the most widely taken AP exams, both administered in May, Kaplan Test Prep will hold its first ever free, live, online Prepathons for AP U.S. History, on Saturday, April 22, between 1 PM and 5 PM ET, and AP Biology on Sunday, April 23, between 1 PM and 5 PM ET. Accessible at www.kaptest.com/APprepathon, the events will give test takers access to Kaplan’s most highly rated teachers and its open format will allow students to come and go as needed, staying for whatever amount of time they feel is valuable for them. Students can ask questions in the chat and receive responses in real-time, engage with instructors, and interact with peers. AP U.S. History event participants are encouraged to share their experiences on Twitter using the hashtags #APUSH and #Prepathon; AP Biology event participants are encouraged to use #APBio and #Prepathon.

“Doing well on AP exams serves several important purposes for prospective college students. First, they show admissions officers that you are capable of mastering complex material. Second, you can earn college credit, which could lead you to graduating on time or even graduating early, which can lead to saving tens of thousands of dollars in tuition. Doing well on AP exams can also earn you placement in higher level courses,” said Cailin Papszycki, director of college admissions and K-12 programs, Kaplan Test Prep. “We hope more high schools across the United States provide this opportunity to their students to take AP courses in the coming years, as doing well in them can give them an edge getting into college.”

While this is Kaplan’s first Prepathon for AP exams, its recent Prepathons for the SAT® and ACT® and free PSAT® Prep Live course attracted tens of thousands of enthusiastic, engaged students. Among the comments and quotes from participants included:

  • “Thank you! This really opened my eyes about the things I need to practice more!”
  • “I feel like i can ace it right now.”
  • “Thanks to all of you, I feel so much more confident about the test now!”
  • “Thank you guys for 6 hours of awesomeness.”
  • “Thanks a lot everyone! You have no idea how helpful this is for me!”

For a short video illustrating the results of Kaplan’s survey, please visit here.

For journalists wanting to arrange an interview with one of Kaplan Test Prep’s college admissions experts, please contact Russell Schaffer at 212.453.7538 or russell.schaffer@kaplan.com. To register for the event, go to www.kaptest.com/APprepathon.

*For the survey, 361 admissions officers from the nation’s top national, regional and liberal arts colleges and universities – as compiled from U.S. News & World Report – were polled by telephone between July and August 2016.

AP® is a registered trademark of the College Board. SAT® is a trademark registered and/or owned by the College Board. ACT® is a registered trademark of ACT, Inc. PSAT/NMSQT® is a registered trademark of the College Board and the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. None of the aforementioned trademark holders were involved in the production of, and do not endorse this product.

About Kaplan Test Prep

Kaplan Test Prep (www.kaptest.com) is a premier provider of educational and career services for individuals, schools and businesses. Established in 1938, Kaplan is the world leader in the test prep industry. With a comprehensive menu of online offerings as well as a complete array of print books and digital products, Kaplan offers preparation for more than 100 standardized tests, including entrance exams for secondary school, college and graduate school, as well as professional licensing exams for attorneys, physicians and nurses.  Kaplan also provides private tutoring and graduate admissions consulting services.

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