The SAT, PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, and the PSAT 8/9 can be used to expand access to AP classrooms and grow AP programs. Both educators and students can see if students' test scores indicate that they are likely to succeed in specific AP courses.
College Board research shows that students who score a 3 or higher on an AP Exam typically experience greater academic success in college and are more likely to earn a college degree on time than non-AP students.
AP Potential identifies students who are likely to succeed in AP courses and on AP Exams. The only tool of its kind, it is free to all schools that offer the SAT, PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, or PSAT 8/9.
AP Potential uses scores from the SAT, PSAT/NMSQT, and PSAT 10 to provide predictions for 23 AP Exams.
Scores from the PSAT 8/9 are used to identify ninth graders with potential to succeed in the following AP courses most often offered to 10th graders:
- Computer Science Principles
- World History
- European History
- Art History
AP Potential is based on College Board research that analyzed the performance of more than a million students and established meaningful correlations between PSAT/NMSQT scores and AP Exam scores. The research was performed on the prior PSAT/NMSQT, and concordances have been applied to transfer the expectancy tables to the current PSAT/NMSQT.
The SAT Suite's common score scale allows the applying of these PSAT/NMSQT expectancy tables to the entire suite of assessments. When data from students who take the SAT, PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, or PSAT 8/9 and one or more AP Exams is available, the College Board will adjust AP Potential expectancy tables.
How AP Potential Works
AP Potential helps schools ensure that no student is overlooked. Schools can use it to:
- Identify students likely to succeed on AP Exams
- Determine which AP courses to offer
Schools can generate a roster of students likely to score a 3 or higher on a given AP Exam by selecting specific criteria, such as grade level and AP subject area.
AP Potential data is an important tool, but it should never be used as the sole criterion for placement in AP courses. Though a strong indicator, it accounts for only a fraction of the factors that determine a student's AP Exam score.
Other important factors include individual student motivation and preparation, parental support, and teacher efficacy.