Sending AP Scores To Colleges And Universities

Advanced Placement courses, also known as APs, are often considered to be some of the most rigorous courses available to students in many high schools across the country, and they generally conclude with an AP Test. 

Advanced Placement courses are first year college-level courses in difficulty and content. As a result, Advanced Placement courses are often an excellent way to demonstrate intellectual curiosity, a willingness to pursue a rigorous course load, and an ability to excel in a difficult academic schedule. Advanced Placement courses can also raise your weighted GPA in many cases.

While all of the aforementioned reasons, from increased weighted GPA to demonstrated rigor of coursework  are great reasons to take Advanced Placement courses, there is another key reason to choose to take AP courses: AP Courses can lead to college credit.

That’s right! If you score well (based on the standards listed by the admissions office of each given college or university/the college or university you are planning on attending) on the AP Exam administered at the end of the academic year (separate from your in-course final exam), you can earn credit for having essentially completed an equivalent course at the college or university of your choice. This can give you advanced standing and even save money and time towards the completion of your college degree.

Of course, a college or university cannot give your credit for your AP Scores unless you send AP scores to them. In this article, we will answer the question that many high school students across the country taking AP courses and their corresponding AP exams may be wondering: How to send AP scores to colleges or universities

We will also discuss some related questions relevant to almost any AP Student, like “How much does it cost to send AP scores to college or universities?” and “Should you send AP scores to colleges when you apply?” as well as “Can you choose which AP scores to send to colleges and universities?”

Why Send AP Scores To Colleges And Universities

There are actually quite a few reasons as to why many high school students would want to send their AP scores to colleges and universities. 

Sending AP scores can demonstrate that you followed through and took the AP exams for your AP courses. It can also further aid in demonstrating mastery of the subject matter covered in those rigorous AP courses through demonstrated success on challenging AP exams (provided you did similarly well on said AP exams, of course). 

But perhaps most importantly, as we mentioned earlier in the article, sending AP scores to colleges and universities allows you to gain college credit for having done well on the AP exams. Now that you know the importance of sending AP scores to colleges, we will discuss who actually sends them.

Who Should Send My AP Scores To Colleges and Universities?

Any student who hopes to gain college credit from AP scores should send them to all colleges and universities they are applying to and hope to gain AP credit from. 

The College Board actually sends AP scores to colleges on your behalf, but you must request that the College Board do so in order for them to send AP scores to colleges on your behalf. Depending on when and how you decide to send AP scores to colleges, there may or may not be an associated fee.

Which AP Scores Should I Send To Colleges And Universities?

When choosing to send AP scores to colleges and universities, you should consider what you hope to gain from sending them. Generally, you should send any AP scores that will benefit you. 

In most cases, sending all AP scores will benefit you. As long as you did well in all or most of your AP courses and your AP scores also reflect your performance, one or two subpar AP scores generally won’t hurt you, especially not in terms of college admissions decisions — so don’t worry too much if that situation is the case for you. 

However, there may be some reasons, such as excessive lower scores that you may choose to not want to send some AP scores. However, colleges will still see that you took the AP course but don’t have an AP exam score if you don’t send the scores and often require that you self-report all AP scores, so keep that in mind. Additionally, AP scores don’t often play a role in admissions decisions and official reports are rarely sent until you decide where to attend, which doesn’t make this process worth it for many students. We will discuss if that is a possibility next. 

Can I Choose To Only Send Certain AP Scores To Colleges And Universities?

The short answer to this question is yes

You can pick and choose to send AP scores to only certain colleges and universities, and you can pick and choose which AP scores to send to colleges and universities. However, the longer answer is that this doesn’t function exactly the same way something like SAT Score Choice does.

The process is a bit different than what you may be used to or what you may imagine based on the example of SAT Score Choice (in particular, there is a fee associated with it for AP scores). 

One of the only ways to not send certain AP scores is to submit a written request to the College Board by June 15 of the year in which you took the given AP exam to withhold that score from a certain college or university and pay $10 per score per college to the College Board. You can later choose to release these AP scores to the given colleges or universities if you wish. 

The only other way to not send a given AP score is to request to cancel the score altogether in writing to the College Board. In this scenario, the score will be completely wiped from your record, and nobody will be able to see it again. Be careful, though, as you no longer have access to the score if you want it, then.

We will discuss some more detail about both of these methods of AP score withholding and AP score canceling a bit later in this article. 

How To Send AP Scores To Colleges And Universities: All The Possible Ways To Send AP Scores To Colleges and Universities

Now that we’ve discussed the importance of AP scores and the importance of sending AP scores, as well as why you would want to send AP scores to colleges and universities, we will discuss how to send AP scores to colleges and universities in some more detail. 

Requesting Score Reports On Your AP Answer Sheet

The first answer to the question of how to send AP scores to colleges and universities is to request the score reports on your AP answer sheet. Keep in mind that, in most cases, you can self-report AP scores on your college application and only submit the official AP score report when you’ve decided which college to attend, so you may not want to choose this route since it requires you to decide to send them before seeing your scores.

However, if you go the route of requesting AP scores on your answer sheet, you would do this by entering the college’s four digit code on your test booklet, resulting in all AP scores (not just that year’s, but all of your AP scores) being sent to that one college for free. Generally speaking, this is fine to do as a senior who has decided where to attend, but for younger students who are going to have to self-report AP scores on their applications anyway (and they are sometimes listed on your high school transcript, depending on your school), it may not be worth it to go this route.

Requesting AP Score Reports Online

The next way to address the question of how to send AP scores to colleges and universities is to consider requesting your AP score reports online. This is often the easier and most convenient way to do so, and what is best for many students.

You can go about this by logging into your AP account (in a similar manner to your college board account on the college board website, and choosing to send AP test scores to colleges, and then paying either $15 per report or $25 per rush report. Standard reports are delivered in about 14 business days whereas rush reports are often delivered between five and nine business days. 

It’s best to keep any deadlines that apply to you in mind so you can save money on report fees. Remember, you often only have to send official score reports to receive transfer credit/course credit in your senior year (not in junior year or earlier), after you’ve decided where you will attend college.

Requesting AP Score Reports By Mail Or Fax

Another way to go about the question of how to send AP scores to colleges or universities is to request AP score reports by mail or fax. This is similar to the online request method, and is less convenient for many students. 

To go about requesting scores this way, you’d have to mail a written request (with payment) to AP services (at their P.O. box) that includes your name, address, phone number, some other personal information, AP number, high school name and address, names and years of the AP exams you’re sending scores for, payment info, and college codes and info. Alternatively, you can fax the same information to the AP services fax number. 

There is no money or time saved this way, so it’s simply a matter of if you prefer one of these methods as opposed to the online method to decide if you want to send AP scores this way instead.

When Should I Send My AP Scores To Colleges And Universities?

Now that you know how to send AP scores to the college or university of your choice, you may be wondering when you should send them. 

The decision of when to send AP scores to the college or university of your choice is personal, and should be based on the deadlines and guidelines provided to you by the college(s) in question, the information listed on their websites, and so forth. However, generally speaking, you usually can self-report your AP scores when applying and send an official score once you decide which college to attend (but before their given deadline for receiving AP scores).

How Much Does It Cost To Send AP Scores To Colleges And Universities?

Now that you know how to send AP scores to the college or university of your choice, you may also be wondering how much that process costs.

As we mentioned, you can get one free score report per test if you choose to send your AP scores on test day. However, if you are choosing to request your scores online or via mail or fax at a later date (which is often recommended for non-seniors), it costs, as mentioned in this article, $15 per standard report (14 business days) and $25 per rush report (5 to 9 business days).

Other AP Score Report Options

As we discussed, more often than not, there is not much of a reason to withhold or cancel AP scores, as you generally have to self-report all AP scores and they don’t often play too major of a role in admissions decisions (barring certain scenarios, of course. Everyone’s situation is different). 

However, if for one reason or another, you want to withhold or cancel some AP scores, there are ways to do it.

AP Score Withholding

You can request that one or more AP scores be withheld from one or more colleges (this is reversible). You must request this formally from AP services and pay $10 per score per college by June 15 of the year in which you take the test.

AP Score Cancellation

You can also choose to cancel an AP score by formally requesting it from AP. This is irreversible and erases the score from your record. Both of these options should generally only be used if absolutely necessary and after significant thought.

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About the Author

William Grossman

William Grossman is a student at the University of Florida studying Economics. He scored a 1500 on his SAT and a 32 on his ACT. While it may seem unorthodox, William always reads the last chapter of a new book before going back to read it from the beginning — that way, he can see if the book will be any good before deciding to read the whole thing!

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