New math: A “3” on an AP test equals college credit

High school students who pass an Advanced Placement test are now guaranteed college credit, under a newly passed state policy.

A grade of a “3” or better on an AP test is generally considered a passing mark. These grades will automatically translate into credits at state-run colleges and universities.

“In the past, we’ve had kind of a patchwork approach to how Advanced Placement exam credit can be granted across the state and what the minimum thresholds are,” said Randall Brumfield, the chief academic officer for the State Board of Education. “This policy ensures that any AP exam that is taken, if that student scores at least a “3,” then the exam will count toward their college degree regardless of their major.”

The State Board adopted the new policy last week.

AP is a component of Idaho’s growing advanced opportunities program, which provides students a $4,125 allowance to earn college credits before college.

All told, more than 13,000 students took nearly $1.2 million worth of AP tests last school year, all on the state’s nickel.

The state’s education, political and business leaders are pushing the advanced opportunities program, in hopes of encouraging high school graduates to continue their education.

More reading: Click here for “Life After High School,” Idaho Education News’ award-winning series on the state’s struggles to convince high school graduates to continue their education. Look for a followup series at Idaho Education News this fall.

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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