DHS Students consider AP testing options

Due to much of the school year having been held online until just the week before spring break, many students feel anxious about the fast-approaching AP exams this year. Suhani Khandelwal, a sophomore and first-time AP student, expressed her concerns about the tests: “I definitely did not think that my first time taking an AP class would be online…This year has basically been a year of self-study, and I’m scared that my first AP test records would be based on not what the teachers told me but what I was able to learn from the resources provided.”

Some added factors that students must take into account this year are the different exam dates and methods being offered for the exams. An email containing a master AP exam schedule and an explanation of the exam choices was sent out on March 26, detailing how every subject has two exam dates to choose from—one date for an in-person exam at the high school, and another for a digital exam at home.

Unlike last year, the AP exams will be testing the full breadth of the courses and will thus retain their usual length of around 3 hours. In addition, neither of the two options (digital and in-person) will be open-note, another significant difference from last year. 

However, the digital, at-home exams have an added layer of complexity—test-takers cannot toggle between questions as they can during in-person exams. This means that once a student moves on from a question—be it multiple choice or free response—they cannot revisit it. The full guidelines and information about the digital exams are also attached in the aforementioned email detailing the AP test-taking options.

Each student will likely have their own reasons and considerations that will cause them to view one option as more favorable compared to the other. Dublin High senior Saivishnu Tulugu explains his reasoning: “I am leaning towards digital exams as they are most similar to the online exams I have been exposed to thus far and will allow me to work at the comfort of my home. I appreciate the hard work being done by the staff and faculty to make the testing process smooth for everyone. We will see how it all plays out!”

Indeed, the staff and faculty have worked very hard to conduct several surveys and meetings to finally formulate the elaborate plan and the schedule that is currently being presented to students. The logistics of the in-person testing is also an important aspect of the AP exams that will require much planning and preparation in order to provide a safe and sanitary testing environment for those who elect for in-person exams

In addition to safety considerations regarding the pandemic, some important factors that students should consider when making their decision are: their typing speed versus writing speed, whether they are comfortable with attempting questions without revisiting them, which date suits their personal schedule best, whether their internet is reliable, etc,

The email sent out on March 26 also had a survey attached for DHS students’ final decisions regarding the AP exam dates, and is due Friday, April 9. Study your options and choose well, Gaels!