Some info about 2017 Math and Science AP® Test results

As we did last year, we have catalogued a bunch of tweets from Trevor Packer, the College Board’s Head of AP. These are really important tidbits of information for students taking an AP class in 2017/2018, who should consider where students from the previous year tended to have trouble. Here is what Mr. Packer had to say, with tweets organized by course; scroll down to look for your course. Students should look for the AP course they plan to take in Fall 2017, and take his remarks from this year under advisement! Please also compare with our blog from last year, Some info about 2016 AP® Test results

First, note these general remarks:

Trevor Packer ‏@AP_Trevor  June 12 When I report perfect scores, note that other perfect scores may emerge as late exams are scored, so the numbers are not final.

Trevor Packer ‏@AP_Trevor  June 13 2016 (ed note – this is from previous year, but still applicable). As a reminder, AP Exams aren’t graded on a curve. So when more students demonstrate mastery, the percentage of 3s,4s,5s increases.

 June 15 Students can check colleges’ and universities’ AP credit policies here, but should always confirm with the schools: Link Here

 June 19 (1/2) For all AP exams, profs + psychometricians shift points needed up /down depending on difficulty of questions. (wikipedia: equating)

 June 19 (2/2) Thus any variations in exam difficulty=removed, so AP scores changes each yr reflect changes in student ability, not changes in rigor.

 June 19 Find out how you can help students access their AP Exam scores next month: 

 June 22 This online community is where AP teachers discuss teaching strategies, share resources, and connect: Link Here

AP Calculus BC 
 June 15 I’m at the AP Calculus Standard Setting today, where professors take the AP Calc exams themselves to determine scores needed for 1,2,3,4,5.

 June 15 One professor just said, “This is one of the best calculus exams I have ever seen; students who do well on it will succeed at my college.”

  June 22 Scores of 4 and 5 on AP Calculus AB and BC now typically require students to earn points for reasoning and accurate notation.

  June 22 AP Calc BC students found modeling w/separable diff(Q4) & Maclaurin series (Q6) very difficult; about 24% of students earned 0 pts on them.
  June 22 AP Calculus BC free-response questions: students scored highest on graphic analysis of f’ (Q3): Link Here
  June 22 AP Calculus BC students generally scored so high on each topic in the multiple-choice section that there’s nothing to single out.
  June 22 1 student, out of 133,000 worldwide, earned all 108/108 points possible on this year’s AP Calculus BC Exam.
 June 22 The 2017 AP Calculus BC scores: 5: 42.4%; 4: 18.3%; 3: 19.9%; 2: 14.3%; 1: 5.1%.
 June 22 Ben Hedrick and I will post next week a memo on the AP Calculus online teacher community w/specific details about this year’s scores.
AP Calculus AB
 June 15 I’m at the AP Calculus Standard Setting today, where professors take the AP Calc exams themselves to determine scores needed for 1,2,3,4,5.
 June 15 One professor just said, “This is one of the best calculus exams I have ever seen; students who do well on it will succeed at my college.”
  June 22 Scores of 4 and 5 on AP Calculus AB and BC now typically require students to earn points for reasoning and accurate notation.
 June 22 3 students, out of 317,000 worldwide, earned all 108/108 points possible on this year’s AP Calculus AB Exam.
 June 22 The most challenging question on this year’s AP Calc AB exam involved modeling w/separable diff (Q4); 49% of students earned 0 points on it.
 June 22 AP Calculus AB free-response: students earned the highest points, on average, when modeling rates (Q2): 
 June 22 AP Calculus AB multiple-choice: students scored very well determining derivatives, while finding the limits questions most challenging.
 June 22 The 2017 AP Calculus AB scores: 5: 18.6%; 4: 18.1%; 3: 21%; 2: 21.9%; 1: 20.4%.
 June 22 Ben Hedrick and I will post next week a memo on the AP Calculus online teacher community w/specific details about this year’s scores.
AP Biology
 June 20 AP Biology free-response: many students really struggled with detecting DNA damage (Q6); 59% earned 0 pts on it: 
 June 20 AP Biology free-response: students did very well constructing & analyzing food webs (Q4) and evaluating impact of algal growth (Q5).
 June 20 AP Biology multiple-choice section: students scored highest on cellular processes questions and lowest on genetics questions.
 June 20 1 student out of 256,000 worldwide earned all 120/120 pts possible on this year’s AP Biology exam. Looking forward to him/her curing cancer.
 June 20 The 2017 AP Biology scores: 5: 6.2%; 4: 20.9%; 3: 36.7%; 2: 27.8%; 1: 8.4%.
 June 20 AP Biology students and teachers have achieved the highest number of scores of 3+ of any of the past 5 years.
 May 10 The 2017 free-response questions are now available here
AP Chemistry
 June 16 AP Chemistry students scored best on Q1 (CCl4 synthesis): Link Here
 June 16 The most difficult AP Chemistry question was Q6 on Mg(OH)2. More than 40% of students scored 0 on it.
 June 16 AP Chemistry multiple-choice: students scored well — best on atomic structure questions, least well on equilibrium.
 June 16 3 students, out of 160,000 worldwide, earned all 100/100 points possible on this year’s AP Chemistry exam.
 June 16 The 2017 AP Chemistry scores: 5: 9.2%; 4: 15.7%; 3: 26.1%; 2: 27%; 1: 22%.
AP Physics C (Electricity & Magnetism)
 June 13 AP Phys E&M Q2 (circuits) was a great, challenging question; students who can earn >half its points meet colleges’ standards for a 5.
 June 13 AP Physics C: E&M students scored highest on Q3 (magnetostatics) and lowest (by far) on Q1 (electrostatics): 
 June 13 The 2017 AP Physics C: Electricity & Magnetism scores 5: 28.1%; 4: 25.1%; 3: 15.6%; 2: 18.2%; 1: 13%.
 June 13 In AP Physics C: Electricity & Magnetism this year: smaller percentages of 5s and 2s; higher percentages of 3s and 4s.
 May 10 The 2017 C: Electricity & Magnetism free response questions are now available here
AP Physics C (Mechanics)
 June 13 Many found AP Phys C: Mech FRQ2 (energy; Newton’s laws; kinematics) tough; >10% of students got 0 pts on it: 
 June 13 3 AP Physics C: Mechanics students, out of 55,000 worldwide, earned all 90/90 points possible on this year’s exam.
 June 13 The 2017 AP Physics C: Mechanics scores 5: 34.7%; 4: 27.8%; 3: 16.1%; 2: 13%; 1: 8.4%. These may shift slightly as late exams are scored.
 June 13 Some big news: this year’s AP Physics C: Mechanics students appear to have achieved by far the highest scores ever on this exam.
 May 10 The 2017 C: Mechanics free-response questions are now available here
AP Physics 2
 June 13 AP Physics 2 students generally scored lowest on FRQ4, which requires a paragraph-length electrostatics explanation: 
 June 13 AP Physics 2 students generally did best on FRQ 2 (experimental design: resistivity) and FRQ3 (lenses, refractions): Link Here 
 June 13 The only topic where AP Physics 2 students generally did poorly on multiple-choice questions was Big Idea 3: interactions between objects.
 June 13 AP Physics 2 students scored well across the multiple-choice questions, esp on questions about Big Idea 2: fields in space & interactions.
 June 13 The 2017 AP Physics 2 scores 5: 11.1%; 4: 15.6%; 3: 34.1%; 2: 29.7%; 1: 9.5%. These may shift slightly as late exams are scored.
 June 13 Good to see that the AP Physics 1 and 2 scores have again improved this year, steady progress since these new exams were launched in 2015.
AP Physics 1
 June 13 Many AP Physics 1 students scored low on FRQ4 (energy, kinematics); ~20% of students earned 0 of 7 pts possible: 
 June 13 AP Physics 1 students scored best on FRQ2 (experimental design, forces); ~20% of students earned 10-12 pts out of 12: Link Here 
 June 13 AP Physics 1 students scored lowest on multiple-choice questions regarding Science Practice 5: Data Analysis and Evaluation of Evidence.
 June 13 The 2017 AP Physics 1 scores 5: 5%; 4: 15.8%; 3: 20.3%; 2: 29.5%; 1: 29.4%. These may shift slightly as late exams are scored.
 June 13 Good to see that the AP Physics 1 and 2 scores have again improved this year, steady progress since these new exams were launched in 2015.
AP Computer Science A
 June 12 105 students, out of 61,000 worldwide, earned all 80 points possible on this year’s AP Computer Science A Exam.
 June 12 On the other hand, 30% of AP Computer Science A students were stumped by Q3 (string processing), earning 0 pts: Link Here
 June 12 AP Computer Science A students dominated the 2nd free-response question (class design); more than half the students earned 8-9 pts out of 9.
 June 12 The most difficult multiple-choice questions for AP Computer Science A students seemed to be the “object-oriented programming” ones.
 June 12 The 2017 AP Computer Science A scores 5: 24.4%; 4: 20.9%; 3: 21.9%; 2: 11.5%; 1: 21.3%. These may shift slightly as late exams are scored.
 June 12 AP Computer Science has expanded from 26,000 to 61,000 students since 2012, when the most frequent score was a 1. This year: it’s a 5.
AP Statistics
 June 27 In aggregate, AP Statistics students demonstrated weaker knowledge & skills this yr, such that the % of 1s/2s is the largest of this decade.
 June 27 The 2017 AP Statistics scores: 5: 13.3%; 4: 15.5%; 3: 25%; 2: 20.4%; 1: 25.8%.
 June 27 1 AP Statistics student, out of 217,000 worldwide, earned all 100/100 points possible on this year’s exam.Watch your back,
 June 27 (1/2) AP Statistics multiple-choice: students knew exploring data & sampling/experimentation well . . .
 June 27 (2/2) AP Statistics multiple-choice: . . . but struggled w/probability/simulation & statistical inference.
 June 27 The percentage of AP Statistics students who earned 0 on each free-response question: 1: 25%; 2: 21%; 3: 30%; 4: 17%; 5: 42%; 6: 53%.
 June 27 AP Statistic students generally did a solid job constructing a confidence interval in Q2, the highest-scoring FRQ: Link Here
AP Computer Science Principles
 June 27 (1/5) To determine the scores needed to earn 2, 3, 4, 5 on the first-ever AP Computer Science Principles exam . . .
 June 27 (2/5) professors from diverse colleges took the exam themselves, evaluating each question for difficulty, using standard setting protocols.
 June 27 (3/5) The professors were surprised and impressed by the difficulty of the exam, attesting it would challenge their own college students.

 June 27  (4/5) They established the required scores purely based on high expectations, not knowing how many students would meet those standards.

 June 27 (5/5) The result: kudos to the first pioneering cohort of AP CSP teachers & students, many of whom met the high standards the panel set.

 June 27 The (inaugural) 2017 AP Computer Science Principles scores: 5: 14%; 4: 21.6%; 3: 39%; 2: 18.5%; 1: 6.9%.

 June 27 AP CSP multiple-choice: students scored exceptionally well, and generally aced the questions on global impacts & analyzing impacts.

 June 27 The lowest scoring AP CSP questions (but still solid): interpreting data abstraction & evaluating algorithms, essential for a 3 or higher.

 June 27 AP CSP students generally performed well on the Explore task & the Create task; I’ll highlight the most challenging aspects of each.

 June 27 The most challenging aspect of the Explore task for AP CSP students = analyzing data & info; only 12% of students earned both those points.

 June 27 The most challenging aspects of the AP CSP Create task = applying abstractions (24% earned all 3 pts) & algorithms (35% earned all 3 pts).

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