On May 2, the stress of AP exams began for thousands of students across the country and will last until mid May. AP exams are for any students that want to attempt to get exempt from certain college courses. Each test lasts multiple hours and puts a hefty strain on the brain.
Preparation for AP exams range from student to student. Some students spend hours preparing, while others don’t even touch an AP review book. The teachers of most AP classes try to help students review by hosting review sessions once or twice a week during SMART lunch or after school, but attendance varies widely.
Preparation for the exams is stressful, but actually taking the exam is where the real stress comes in. Once all hundred or more students have put away their phones and bags, the test proctor jumps right in with the scripted directions that have to be said before every standardized test. For most tests that have a written response portion, the multiple choice section is first. Since each AP exam lasts around three hours, an hour and a half is spent on each section. For each part of the test, students have to make sure to read each question carefully, and try and answer as many as possible, while also making sure to be conscientious of the time. Once the exam is finished, students’ brains and hands are absolutely exhausted.
Timmy Wipperman, a junior at LRHS, is taking AP exams. Aside from the stress and anxiety caused by AP exams, he sees the benefits of taking them. “The benefits of the AP exams would obviously be getting college credits and being ahead of your peers when you’re applying to colleges, and so you don’t have to take classes and spend extra money on the classes that you’ve already taken in high school,” said Wipperman. “It was stressful trying to cram the entire curriculum into a couple days on top of other school work, but overall I think the benefits of AP exams outweigh the negatives.”
For students taking only one or two exams, the first 3 weeks of May aren’t considered to be the most stressful time of the year, but for some students who are taking 4 or more, these three weeks are filled with more stress than the end of the year exams. As difficult and tiring as AP exams are, in the end most students are glad they took them because they can be exempt from several college courses. By the time college comes around, most students can thank AP exams for getting them ahead of the game.