How Coronavirus is Changing AP Exams and Classes

Anthony Zehnder, Staff Writer

With concerns over coronavirus canceling school for at least a month, many students are concerned about their AP Exams and AP classes.

However, teachers and administrators are trying their hardest to adjust to these situations and calm students’ minds.

Recently, College Board announced the AP Exams will be shortened and taken online. Instead of a three to four hour-long exam with a multiple choice and free response section, most exams will be taken in 45 minutes with only free response questions.

College Board has also released a full schedule of the times of each AP Exam. Most of the classes which had a pre-exam portfolio project do not have an actual exam. Instead, the AP scores will be based solely on the portfolio.

Furthermore, college board has removed some of the topics covered for some classes. You either check with your teacher or the college board website to see what topics are still being covered on your exam.

As for AP teachers, they are trying to make a smooth transition to teleschool and keep their students on track.

For his AP Calculus BC class, David Pomerance schedules two-hour class meetings through Teams on Tuesdays from 2 to 4 p.m. During these meetings, Pomerance teaches the new material.

Pomerance also posts videos on Youtube of himself going through all the new material in case something was missed during the two-hour session.

Finally, Pomerance also hosts help sessions on Teams throughout the week to ensure his students can succeed throughout these times of quarantine.

AP US Government and AP Comparative Government teacher James Campbell has been planning to stay on track.

Campbell feels he has a huge advantage, as his department has the last day of the week to push out material, giving him time to see what online learning strategies are effective.

Both of his classes finished a unit shortly before schools closed, with US Government completing the Congress unit and Comparative Government completing the Russia unit, so he will begin by reviewing those topics.

“I am going to start off by reviewing and assessing the Congress and Russia material with a series of FRQ-based questions. After that, I am hoping to roll out PowerPoints with audio attachments,” said Campbell.

However, Campbell still feels pressed for time and has some uncertainties on the format of his online class.

“I am concerned with how I will do summative assessments remotely,” said Campbell.

He said he may be making essay assignments for summative purposes.

AP Language and AP Literature teacher Suzanne Wren assigns her students interesting formative assignments for the week. For example, her AP Literature students compared “Hamlet” to a song, while her AP Language students wrote an argumentative long response paragraph on “The Great Gatsby.”

Wren is also available via e-mail in case her students need help with their assignments.

As for the upcoming weeks, Wren will be assigning multiple-choice reading assignments and essay writing assignments to sharpen her students’ skills for the AP exam.

“Essays will be the cure assignments as we go forward,” said Wren.

All in all, the AP teachers throughout all the departments are trying their best to prepare their students for the AP Exams.