"Long Before the Third Grade Test" by wecometolearn is licensed with CC BY 2.0.
May is here, and the Advanced Placement (AP) tests have begun. With a delayed school start date and new remote learning, AP classes have been challenging to many.
For the 2021 AP tests, students were given a choice between three testing dates in early May, late May or early June. All exams except Music Theory and world languages had at least one online testing option in addition to an in-person option.
Teachers of AP classes have struggled to catch up on lost time after the August derecho delayed the start of the year to ensure their students are prepared for the exams.
“Moving from a regular school year timetable to a shortened year, a switch to the block scheduling and being told to try to keep direct teaching to 45 minutes per 90 minute period means that a lot of the way that teachers taught was switched around to try and meet these new challenges,” Adrian Evans, social studies teacher at Kennedy High School, said.
Students have to learn the same content on a shorter timeline than usual. Teachers had to rush to teach all the content and students feel this has put them at a disadvantage.
“I feel like we’re less prepared than some other AP students who didn’t have a late start to the school year,” Joslyn Sheeley, so., said.
A late start was not the only bump in the road for AP classes. The first semester of the school year was taught online. Some students struggled to stay motivated to learn the AP material.
“Being online only has really affected some students,” Evans said.
While regular courses have finals over what was taught in each semester, AP exams are a cumulation of the entire year’s content. The content some students struggled to learn in the 100% online format in the first semester will still be on the AP tests.
Despite the numerous challenges AP classes have faced, teachers believe students are prepared for the exams. AP students have overcome obstacle after obstacle and are almost to the finish line.
“Our students have done a masterful job of meeting these new challenges,” said Evans.