Beginning with the May 2011 AP Exam administration, total scores on multiple-choice sections will be based on the number of questions answered correctly. Points will no longer be deducted for incorrect answers and, as always, no points will be awarded for unanswered questions.
Existing research confirms that both formula scoring (in which points are deducted for incorrect answers) and rights scoring (in which no points are deducted for incorrect answers) are valid scoring procedures. As AP has expanded, we have needed to create additional versions of each AP Exam to support test-taking worldwide. Unlike most other high stakes exams, AP Exams have a heavily weighted free-response section, which requires specific test development and scoring processes that ensure AP Exams are comparable in difficulty from version to version. The change to rights scoring simply enables us to streamline those processes.
This change will not make AP Exams any easier or harder for students. The number of points needed to earn AP Exam scores of 5, 4, 3 and 2 is, as always, based on how well college students perform during the pre-testing of AP Exam questions.
Thank you for all you do to provide your students with access to high-quality AP opportunities. Your efforts are laying the groundwork for your students’ future college success.