La. leads country in exam growth
The number of college credits earned on Advanced Placement (AP) exams increased by more than 1,000 credits or 25 percent over the past year—the greatest individual increase in state history.
Louisiana high school students scored high enough to earn college credit on 5,144 AP exams in 2013.
Governor Bobby Jindal and State Superintendent John White announced Tuesday that the credits earned by students who scored a 3, 4 or 5 on the AP exams are transferrable to nearly any college in the nation, and Louisiana leads the country in growth of number of exams taken. 10,529 students took the AP exam in 2013, which is 4,000 more students than last year.
Jindal said since taking office, focus has been placed on reforming and improving the education system to ensure that every child in Louisiana has access to a great education. Earlier this year, Louisiana’s graduation rate reached an all-time high. This week’s announcement that a growing number of the state’s high school students are already earning college credit before they even leave for school is more proof that our hard work is paying off, Jindal added.
“By eliminating ineffective programs and investing in ones that work, we have no doubt improved outcomes for our students,” said the governor. “While (the) announcement is great news, we will not stop until every child in Louisiana has the opportunity to get a great education and the skills they need to be successful.”
Promoting Advanced Placement is an aspect of Louisiana Believes, the state’s plan to ensure all students are college or career ready. AP offers students the opportunity to earn college credit during high school by completing rigorous coursework and demonstrating proficiency on a national, standardized end-of-course exam. AP is a national hallmark of college-going success with research showing that students who complete AP coursework are better prepared for college-level work; are more likely to continue their education beyond their freshman year in college; and are more likely to graduate within four to five years. Students participating in AP classes also stand out in the college admissions process and are more competitive in qualifying for scholarships.
Louisiana is poised to continue its success by working to emphasize the value of AP exams. This session, Jindal signed into law legislation (SB202) that creates incentives for students to take more rigorous AP courses by giving courses approved by the state additional weight in the calculation of the TOPS GPA. TOPS GPA determines not only a student’s eligibility for the TOPS award, but also for additional financial incentives. This ends the incentive to take easier courses in order to get a higher GPA, helping to contribute to the continued growth of AP in our state.
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