Advanced Placement FAQs
DIVE, along with the corresponding CLEP Professor course, teaches all the topics required to excel on corresponding CLEP and AP exams. In these courses, Dr. Shormann brings clarity and biblical perspective to politically correct and pseudoscientific topics such as evolutionism, population control and climate alarmism which are prevalent in many AP courses, especially AP Biology.
Why Take an AP Exam?
A passing score of 3 or higher on an AP exam allows students to earn up to 8 college credits, stand out in the admissions and scholarship selection process, and build college study skills. Even if credit is not awarded by the college, CLEP and AP exams validate the home school transcript and demonstrate readiness to college admissions and scholarship committees. According to the College Board, a passing score on the AP Calculus exam is the number one indicator of college success.
AP Course Designation
Authorization by the College Board is required to designate a course as AP on a high school transcript. This authorization requires a course audit which is basically an agreement between the teacher of the class (parent) and the College Board. This is not something a publisher, like DIVE, can do for their curriculum. There is no such thing as an AP approved curriculum. The College Board only approves a specific teacher’s class syllabus.
However, there is rarely any benefit to designating a course as AP on the transcript. The main benefit comes from passing the exam, which is what DIVE focuses on. We do not recommend seeking AP course designation. The only benefit of listing a course as AP on the transcript is to raise the grade point scale of that course from a 4.0 to a 5.0 (designating a course as honors will also allow you to do this). However, due to the differences in rigor among classes and schools, most colleges now strip all GPAs to a 4.0 scale.
A weighted GPA is mainly important in schools where students are competing for class rank, which is used as a factor to determine college admissions. Homeschoolers are generally assigned class rank by their SAT or ACT scores.
Also, AP course designation requires politically correct topics such as evolution, population control, and global warming to be taught as fact. It also requires topics to be taught in the course that are not required for the exam. Our DIVE courses do not waste time on these topics.
Since the AP course authorization rarely has any benefit and can extend the course unnecessarily, I recommend skipping the AP designation and focus on passing the exam. Learn more about AP Course Designation Requirements.
Preparing for AP Exams
AP exams are given on one day in early May. To allow sufficient preparation time, start the DIVE course no later than August 1 and complete it by mid- March. Then, complete the corresponding CLEP Professor course which provides specific preparation for the AP exam. If needed, follow up with some practice AP exams from The College Board or an AP prep book. Another option is to spread the DIVE and CLEP Professor course over two years (ie: Biology and Advanced Biology).
Students preparing for an AP Biology or Chemistry course should use the DIVE eLearning format which includes the most current instructional material for these exams. Then use the corresponding CLEP Professor course and an AP Prep book for extra practice tests.
AP Exam Registration
Completion of an authorized AP course is not required to take an AP exam. Any student with a government issued picture ID can take an AP exam. The following information was taken from The College Board's website. Please visit this website for more information.
Because parents and students cannot order exams directly, the AP Program encourages schools to assist home-schooled students and students whose schools do not offer AP courses and exams. Students can arrange to test at participating schools by following the steps below (students in mainland China should contact firstname.lastname@example.org):
Contact AP Services no later than March 1 to get the names and telephone numbers of local AP Coordinators. Students should prepare a list of the exams they plan to take prior to calling so that the appropriate Coordinators can be identified.
Contact the Coordinators identified by AP Services no later than March 15.
Students should inform each Coordinator they contact that:
They are trying to locate a school willing to administer AP Exams to outside students. Students should note the exams they plan to take.
They will use the state home-school code provided by the Coordinator on the day of the exam, ensuring their exam score(s) will be reported separately from the school at which they test.
AP Exam Registration for Homeschoolers
Register at the school: Once a parent or student locates a school willing to administer the exam(s), that school's AP Coordinator is responsible for ordering the necessary exam materials and informing the student when and where to report for the exams. The Coordinator should make sure to record the exams the student plans to take.
Exam fees: Coordinators should collect and submit these students' exam fees with those of the Coordinator's school. Coordinators may negotiate a higher exam fee with these students to recover additional proctoring or administration costs.
Photo ID: Coordinators should remind these students to bring valid photo identification, which must be checked on exam day.
Exclusion from your school's score reports: Because these students will be using a different school code, their exam scores will not be included with the administering school's score reports.
Necessary accommodations: Any home-schooled student with documented disabilities must first be approved for testing accommodations by the College Board. The student must also notify the school that accommodations may be needed.