Presented at the Advanced Placement Annual Conference (APAC) in Orlando, FL in July 2012. This presentation reviews concepts central to achieving equitable AP access and success for all willing and academically prepared students. We analyze trends in participation and performance by race/ethnicity from the AP Report to the Nation and consider the ethics of data in order to understand challenges to interpretation as well as behavioral consequences of various metrics. The intended audience is AP Coordinators, school administrators, and those who recognize the importance of building equity from the ground up.
AP Potential is a data-driven tool offered by the College Board that uses scores from the PSAT/NMSQT to identify students who have the potential to succeed in AP courses. In 2006, changes to the writing scale were made because it was the first year in which the PSAT/NMSQT writing scale was linked to the new SAT writing scale. This scale change had implications for AP Potential in that the AP Exams that used PSAT/NMSQT writing scores singly or in combination with critical reading and/or mathematics scores needed to be updated. Thus, the purpose of this study was to recompute the expectancy tables for those AP Exams that involved writing.
The purpose of this study is to reexamine the relationship between PSAT/NMSQT scores and AP Examination grades using more recent test data in order to obtain additional validation evidence for using the PSAT/NMSQT to identify AP students. PSAT/NMSQT data from October 2000 and October 2001 and AP data from May 2002 and May 2003 were analyzed.
This study reports that student performance on the PSAT/NMSQT can be useful in identifying additional students who may be successful in Advanced Placement Program (AP) courses. PSAT/NMSQT scores can identify students who may not have been initially considered for an AP course through teacher nomination, self-nomination, or other local procedures. Performance on the PSAT/NMSQT is not strongly related to AP grades on four examinations: (1) studio art: design, (2) studio art: drawing, (3) German language, and (4) Spanish language. The relationship of PSAT/NMSQT scores with other AP Examination grades is moderately strong and invariant across ethnic groups and time of testing. That is, the relationship is substantially the same for all ethnic and racial groups and is only slightly weaker when time between testing spreads across two academic years.