AP Chemistry Exam Scoring Information

Instructor: Laura Melega
Dig deeper into the scoring process of the Advanced Placement (AP) Chemistry exam to see if you can earn credit for college. Learn about the exam format as well as study resources designed to help you excel during testing.

About Your AP Chemistry Score

The AP Chemistry exam provides students with the opportunity to earn college credit based on their exam score. The score given on the AP Chemistry exam ranges from 1-5 and is based on a student's combined performance in two test sections:

  • Multiple choice (50%)
  • Free response (50%)

The free response section is reviewed by expert AP instructors and university faculty, and the tabulated score in this section is combined with what you get on the machine-scored multiple-choice section to obtain the composite score. That score is then converted to a 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5.

Students earning a 5 on the AP Chemistry exam typically receive the same credit as students who earn an A in an equivalent course. Students receiving a 1 or 2 on the exam usually do not receive any recommendation for college credit by the College Board, the organization that administers the AP Chemistry exam.

For students who earn a 3 or 4, most higher education institutions consider their scores equivalent to:

4 A-, B+, B
3 B-, C+, C

AP Chemistry Exam: Multiple Choice

The multiple-choice section allows students 90 minutes to answer 60 questions that fall into one of two categories:

Discrete Questions that stand on their own
Question sets Groups of questions that pertain to the same stimulus

Students are provided the following items to reference when answering these questions:

  • The periodic table of the elements
  • A formula and constants chart

The total score on the multiple-choice section is based on the number of correct answers provided as incorrect answers do not count against the student.

AP Chemistry Exam: Free Response

The free response portion of the exam includes three long response questions and four short answer queries. Students will have 1 hour and 45 minutes to write their answers, and they will be allowed to use a scientific calculator as well as the periodic table and the formula and constants chart included with the testing materials.

Preparing for the AP Chemistry Exam

On test day, simply knowing you have done everything you could do to be ready can be a key component to achieving success on the exam.

Study.com's AP Chemistry: Exam Prep course includes more than 140 fun video lessons and practice quizzes, with 24/7 availability and the option to complete them on your mobile device, making studying even more convenient for you!

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

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