Hawaiʻi Students Improve AP Exam Performance

March 3, 2019, 12:56 PM HST · Updated March 3, 12:56 PM
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According to the College Board, more Hawaiʻi students are taking and passing Advanced Placement exams. The College Board recently released their AP Program Results: Class of 2018 report, which shows that 4,141 Hawaiʻi public high school seniors in last yearʻs graduating class took an AP Exam while in high school, an increase of two percentage points from the previous year. Of these graduating seniors, 1,908 of them scored a 3 or higher on an AP exam, an increase of two percentage points over the previous year.

This rise was the second highest, one-year gain nationwide, behind the District of Columbiaʻs increase of three percentage points. In the report, Hawaiʻi ranks fifth in the nation in score improvements over three years and ninth over five years. Hawaiʻi also ranks 12th nationwide in score improvements over the past decade.   

“Our efforts toward increased opportunities for students to access college-level courses are showing great results, in part, through AP access and increased student score performance year over year since 2007,” Hawaiʻi Department of Education superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto said. “We are delivering on our college and career readiness promise through deliberate partnerships with community organizations, PK-12 educators, higher education and parents with a focus on student success.”

In May 2018, Hawaiʻi public and private high school students in all grades took a total of 8,478 AP Exams that scored either a 3, 4, or 5. Based on these results, these students earned an estimated total of 25,434 college credits. At an average rate of $360 per credit hour, the potential cost savings for Hawaiʻi’s students and families totaled $9,156,240, according to the HIDOE.

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Hawaiʻi public schools offer a total of 364 authorized AP college-level courses and exams at 38 high schools. The AP Program provides students the opportunity to take rigorous college-level courses while still in high school and to earn college credit. Each exam is developed by a committee of college and university faculty and AP teachers, ensuring that AP Exams are aligned with the same high standards expected by college faculty. Most four-year colleges in the US provide credit and/or advanced placement for qualifying exam scores.

More information on the AP Program Results: Class of 2018 report can be found online. Additional information on HIDOE College and Career Readiness programs is available online.

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