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Complete List of AP Exams and Courses

Dec 27, 2021
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You might have heard about AP courses if you are a high school student. For those who are not aware, these courses and exams help you get extra credit for college. There is a list of AP classes that students can choose from as their specific interests and likings. If you are confused about which one to opt for, you are right.

In today’s post, we will help you learn all about the list of AP exams and how you should choose the best between them. Along with what you will be studying for each AP exam, you will also learn about the most popular and the hardest courses you can take. Let us get started and find you your most suitable advanced placement course!

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AP Exam 2021: Changes Due to COVID-19

Before we move on to the list of AP exams you can choose from, let us tell you what changes the exam faced this year. Due to the recent pandemic, the AP tests took over three different sessions this year. This was between May and June. For the upcoming year, if the changes remain, you can find all about it with your school or the College Board online.

Complete List of AP Courses and Tests at A Glance

Now, let us move on to the list of AP classes that the College Board offers. Before we tell you about these in detail, here is a quick glance at the names of all the 38 AP subjects available for students. Have a look:
1. AP Research
2. AP Seminar
3. AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): 2-D Design
4. AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): 3-D Design
5. AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): Drawing
6. AP Art History
7. AP Biology
8. AP Calculus AB
9. AP Calculus BC
10. AP Chemistry
11. AP Chinese Language and Culture
12. AP Computer Science A
13. AP Computer Science Principles
14. AP English Language and Composition
15. AP English Literature and Composition
16. AP Environmental Science
17. AP European History
18. AP French Language and Culture
19. AP German Language and Culture
20. AP Government and Politics (Comparative)
21. AP Government and Politics (US)
22. AP Human Geography
23. AP Italian Language and Culture
24. AP Japanese Language and Culture
25. AP Latin
26. AP Macroeconomics
27. AP Microeconomics
28. AP Music Theory
29. AP Physics 1: Algebra-Based
30. AP Physics 2: Algebra-Based
31. AP Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
32. AP Physics C: Mechanics
33. AP Psychology
34. AP Spanish Language and Culture
35. AP Spanish Literature and Culture
36. AP Statistics
37. AP US History
38. AP World History: Modern

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How to Choose Between This List of AP Exams?

Out of all the AP exams above, students can choose any choice. Of course, their school should offer the course. Also, it is up to them to select one or more AP courses. The biggest question is how to decide which AP exam you want to choose? If you are confused, let us help you out.

When you go through the AP exam list, ask yourself which subject you love the most and want to learn about further. For instance, for anyone a math enthusiast, BC Calculus can be a great and rewarding choice. Then, if you are among those who like science, AP Biology, Physics, or Chemistry may be for you.

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Any of the courses you choose will not help you earn extra credit for college but also give you a taste of college courses while in high school. Further, you can also see if the course you are choosing is among the AP Popular Tests. Even if the course you like isn’t popular, you can still choose it.

Full Description of Each AP Course and Test
To help you further decide which AP subject to choose from the list of AP exams, here is a full description of each of them. Have a look at what you will learn:

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AP Research
Among the AP test subjects listed, the first one we will discuss is AP Research. Here is what its course content looks like:
● Big Idea 1: Question and Explore
● Big Idea 2: Understand and Analyze
● Big Idea 3: Evaluate Multiple Perspectives
● Big Idea 4: Synthesize Ideas
● Big Idea 5: Team, Transform, and Transmit

AP Seminar
The next AP course you can select is AP Seminar. It will give you insight into research, collaboration, and communication skills. The course content for it is as follows:
● Big Idea 1: Question and Explore
● Big Idea 2: Understand and Analyze
● Big Idea 3: Evaluate Multiple Perspectives
● Big Idea 4: Synthesize Ideas
● Big Idea 5: Team, Transform, and Transmit

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AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): 2-D Design
This is for all the artists and designers out there. Some of the skills you will learn in the course are as given below:
● Investigating the materials, processes, and ideas that artists and designers use
● Communicating your ideas
● Practicing, experimenting, and revising as you create your work

AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): 3-D Design
3-D Design is another part of the AP Art and Design Program. Some great skills you will learn here include:
● Investigating ideas that artists and designers use
● Practicing your work
● Communicating your ideas

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AP Art and Design (formerly Studio Art): Drawing
The final part of the AP Art and Design Program that all art enthusiasts can choose is AP Drawing. It will help you with the following skills:
● Investigating the processes and ideas of artists
● Practicing and experimenting with your work
● Communicating your ideas about works of art and Design

AP Art History
This course is focused on observation, discussion, reading, and research. Its course content includes the following:
● Global Prehistory
● The Ancient Mediterranean
● Early Europe and Colonial Americas
● Later Europe and the Americas
● Indigenous Americas
● Africa
● West and Central Asia
● South, East, and Southeast Asia
● The Pacific
● Global Contemporary

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AP Biology
This AP course deals with living organisms and biological systems. For it, you will learn the following:
● Chemistry of Life
● Cell Structure and Function
● Cellular Energetics
● Cell Communication and Cell Cycle
● Heredity
● Gene Expression and Regulation
● Natural Selection
● Ecology

AP Calculus AB
You will learn the following if you decide to choose the AP calculus AB exam:
● Limits and Continuity
● Differentiation: Definition and Fundamental Properties
● Differentiation: Composite, Implicit, and Inverse Functions
● Contextual Applications of Differentiation
● Analytical Applications of Differentiation
● Integration and Accumulation of Change
● Differential Equations
● Applications of Integration

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AP Calculus BC
For the AP Calculus BC exam, students will get to study and improve their skills and knowledge in the following areas:
● Limits and Continuity
● Differentiation: Definition and Fundamental Properties
● Differentiation: Composite, Implicit, and Inverse Functions
● Contextual Applications of Differentiation
● Analytical Applications of Differentiation
● Integration and Accumulation of Change
● Differential Equations
● Applications of Integration
● Parametric Equations, Polar Coordinates, and Vector-Valued Functions
● Infinite Sequences and Series

AP Chemistry
For this AP Science exam, along with the theory, there will be hands-on lab investigations. Make sure to save these lab notebooks and reports till the end. The course content is as follows:
● Atomic Structure and Properties
● Molecular and Ionic Compound Structure and Properties
● Intermolecular Forces and Properties
● Chemical Reactions
● Kinetics
● Thermodynamics
● Equilibrium
● Acids and Bases
● Applications of Thermodynamics

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AP Chinese Language and Culture
This world language and culture exam will include these areas of study:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges

AP Computer Science A
The next on the list of AP exams is the computer science A course. Its course content is as follows:
● Primitive Types
● Using Objects
● Boolean Expressions and if Statements
● Iteration
● Writing Classes
● Array
● Array List
● 2D Array
● Inheritance
● Recursion

AP Computer Science Principles
With this course, you will learn about the science of computing and the skills that computer scientists use. It consists of:
● Big Idea 1: Creative Development
● Big Idea 2: Data
● Big Idea 3: Algorithms and Programming
● Big Idea 4: Computer Systems and Networks
● Big Idea 5: Impact of Computing

AP English Language and Composition

There are nine units of study for this AP course that contain knowledge about all the skills you will need for the course. However, the content and themes of the units are not fixed. Your teacher can choose them for the course.
AP English Literature and Composition
If you choose the AP English Literature and Composition course, you will have to study the following kind of literary works:
● Short Fiction I
● Poetry I
● Longer Fiction or Drama I
● Short Fiction II
● Poetry II
● Longer Fiction or Drama II
● Short Fiction III
● Poetry III
● Longer Fiction or Drama III

AP Environmental Science
This course focused on the interrelationships of the natural world. For it, too, save your lab notebooks. It includes the following topics:
● The Living World: Ecosystems
● The Living World: Biodiversity
● Populations
● Earth Systems and Resources
● Land and Water Use
● Energy Resources and Consumption
● Atmospheric Pollution
● Aquatic and Terrestrial Pollution
● Global Change

AP European History
If you choose the AP European History course, you will have to study the following topics:
● Renaissance and Exploration
● Age of Reformation
● Absolutism and Constitutionalism
● Scientific, Philosophical, and Political Developments
● Conflict, Crisis, and Reaction in the Late 18th Century
● Industrialization and Its Effects
● 19th-Century Perspectives and Political Developments
● 20th-Century Global Conflicts
● Cold War and Contemporary Europe

AP French Language and Culture
This language exam in the list of AP exams covers the following topics:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges
AP German Language and Culture
The German Language and Culture course will cover these units:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges

AP Government and Politics (Comparative)
The comparative government and politics exam has the following topics to study:
● Political Systems, Regimes, and Governments
● Political Institutions
● Political Culture and Participation
● Party and Electoral Systems and Citizen Organizations
● Political and Economic Changes and Development

AP Government and Politics (US)
The US government and politics exam, on the other hand, consists of the following units:
● Foundations of American Democracy
● Interactions Among Branches of Government
● Civil Liberties and Civil Rights
● American Political Ideologies and Beliefs
● Political Participation

AP Human Geography
If you choose the AP Human Geography course, you will have to study the following topics to explore the relationship between humans and the earth:
● Thinking Geographically
● Population and Migration Patterns and Processes
● Cultural Patterns and Processes
● Political Patterns and Processes
● Agriculture and Rural Land-Use Patterns and Processes
● Cities and Urban Land-Use Patterns and Processes
● Industrial and Economic Development Patterns and Processes

AP Italian Language and Culture
The Italian Language and Culture course will cover the following units:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges

AP Japanese Language and Culture
If you choose the AP Japanese Language and Culture course, you will have to study the following topics:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges

AP Latin
For the AP Latin course, all the books that you need to cover for the exam include the following:
● Vergil, Aeneid, Book 1
● Caesar, Gallic War, Books 1 and 6
● Vergil, Aeneid, Book 2
● Caesar, Gallic War, Book 4
● Vergil, Aeneid, Book 4
● Caesar, Gallic War, Book 5 Part I
● Caesar, Gallic War, Book 5 Part II, Book 6, and Book 7
● Vergil, Aeneid, Books 6, 8, and 12

AP Macroeconomics
For this economic exam, all the concepts that students need to cover in the course include:
● Basic Economic Concepts
● Economic Indicators and the Business Cycle
● National Income and Price Determination
● Financial Sector
● Long-Run Consequences of Stabilization Policies
● Open-Economy: International Trade and Finance

AP Microeconomics
The next on the list of AP exams is the AP Microeconomics course. Its course content is as follows:
● Basic Economic Concepts
● Supply and Demand
● Production, Cost, and the Perfect Competition Model
● Imperfect Competition
● Factor Markets
● Market Failure and the Role of Government

AP Music Theory
For the AP Music Theory exam, you will focus on the following units throughout the year:
● Music Fundamentals: Pitch, Major Scales, and Key Signatures, Rhythm, Meter, Expressive Elements, Minor Scales and Key Signatures, Melody, Timbre, Texture, Triads, and Seventh Chords
● Harmony and Voice Leading: Chord Function, Cadence, Phrase, Chord Progressions, and Predominant Function, Embellishments, Motives, Melodic Devices, and Secondary Function
● Modes and Form

AP Physics 1: Algebra-Based
For this AP course, there will be theory and hands-on lab work. Make sure to keep this work till the end. As for the units, for this AP exam, unlike the previous years when there were 9 of them, they are only 7 now. These are as follows:
● Kinematics
● Dynamics
● Circular Motion and Gravitation
● Energy
● Momentum
● Simple Harmonic Motion
● Torque and Rotational Motion

AP Physics 2: Algebra-Based
The AP Physics 2: Algebra-Based exam has theories and hands-on lab work. The units for this AP exam are:
● Fluids: Pressure and Forces
● Thermodynamics
● Electric Force, Field, and Potential
● Electric Circuits
● Magnetism and Electromagnetic Induction
● Geometric and Physical Optics
● Quantum, Atomic, and Nuclear Physics

AP Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism
For this one, too, you need to keep your lab journals until the end of the college asks for them. As for course content, it is as follows:
● Electrostatics
● Conductors, Capacitors, Dielectrics
● Electric Circuits
● Magnetic Fields
● Electromagnetism

AP Physics C: Mechanics
Like all other AP Physics exams, you must maintain your lab work. The units you will study are as follows:
● Kinematics
● Newton’s Laws of Motion
● Work, Energy, and Power
● Systems of Particles and Linear Momentum
● Rotation
● Oscillations
● Gravitation

AP Psychology
If you choose the AP Psychology course, you will have to study the following units throughout the year:
● Scientific Foundations of Psychology
● Biological Bases of Behavior
● Sensation and Perception
● Learning
● Cognitive Psychology
● Developmental Psychology
● Motivation, Emotion, and Personality
● Clinical Psychology
● Social Psychology

AP Spanish Language and Culture
The AP Spanish Language and Culture exam focused on the following areas of study:
● Families in Different Societies
● The Influence of Language and Culture on Identity
● Influences of Beauty and Art
● How Science and Technology Affect Our Lives
● Factors That Impact the Quality of Life
● Environmental, Political, and Societal Challenges

AP Spanish Literature and Culture
For the AP Spanish Literature and Culture course, you have to study the Spanish works from:
● The medieval time
● The 16th century
● The 17th century
● Romantic, realistic, and naturalistic literature
● The Generation of ’98 and Modernism
● Theatre and poetry of the twentieth century
● The Latin American Boom
● Contemporary writers from the United States and Spain

AP Statistics
The course content for AP Statistics is as follows:
● Exploring One-Variable Data
● Exploring Two-Variable Data
● Collecting Data
● Probability, Random Variables, and Probability Distributions
● Sampling Distributions
● Inference for Categorical Data: Proportions
● Inference for Quantitative Data: Means
● Inference for Categorical Data: Chi-Square
● Inference for Quantitative Data: Slopes

AP US History
This course about the development of the US focuses on the following 9 periods:
● Period 1: 1491–1607
● Period 2: 1607–1754
● Period 3: 1754–1800
● Period 4: 1800–1848
● Period 5: 1844–1877
● Period 6: 1865–1898
● Period 7: 1890–1945
● Period 8: 1945–1980
● Period 9: 1980–Present

AP World History: Modern
This exam about all the developments responsible for shaping the world from c. 1200 CE to the present covers the following
● The Global Tapestry
● Networks of Exchange
● Land-Based Empires
● Transoceanic Interconnections
● Revolutions
● Consequences of Industrialization
● Global Conflict
● Cold War and Decolonization
● Globalization

Which AP Tests Are the Most Popular?

By now, you know about all AP courses. After this, let us find the most popular out of them. As per the College Board, in the year 2021, the subject that most students chose was AP English Language and Composition. 476,735 students appeared for this AP exam. On the other hand, the least popular AP exam that 2,098 students appeared for was Italian Language and Culture.
Here are some other popular AP Tests:
● AP United States History
● AP English Literature and Composition
● AP World History
● AP Psychology
● AP Gov. and Politics – United States
● AP Calculus AB
● AP Biology
● AP Human Geography
● AP Statistics
● AP Environmental Science
AP Test Passing Rates
Now, we know many students appear for these popular AP exams. However, are their passing rates the same? Let us take a look at the 2021 passing rates to find out:
AP Test Passing Rates 2021

For 2021, the passing rate for the AP Chinese Language and Culture was the highest – 88%. However, this subject wasn’t as popular as the Language exam. Even the following exams with high passing rates were not in the top 10 for the popular 2021 AP exams.
● Art and Design: Drawing: 87%
● Art and Design: 2-D Design: 87%
● Seminar: 85%
● Research: 82%
● Spanish Language and Culture: 80%
● Calculus BC: 75%
● Japanese Language and Culture: 74%
● Physics C: Mechanics: 73%
● Italian Language and Culture: 73%
● Gov. and Politics – Comparative: 72%

The Bottom Line

Any AP exam’s popularity or passing rate should not be the deciding criteria for choosing it. Instead, follow your heart and select that course on the list of AP exams that you truly want to learn for college. Good luck!

list-of-ap-exams

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