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Important Updates

Support for Students and Schools Impacted by Coronavirus
In response to school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering at-home testing for 2020 AP Exams. Note that any related adjustments to 2020 AP Exams, such as length or content covered, may not be reflected on all AP Central pages. Visit Taking the Exams for the latest exam information.

New Secure Practice Exam
A new secure AP Computer Science A practice exam is now available on the AP Course Audit site and in the AP Classroom question bank. The practice exam matches this year’s exam specifications and includes scoring guidelines and a scoring worksheet. Note: the scoring worksheet uses past averages, so the cut score ranges may not fully align with the 2020 exam standards.

You continue to have access to the 2014 and 2015 secure practice exams on the AP Course Audit site and as individual secure questions in the question bank. 

As a reminder, these exams are most appropriate for student practice late in the school year, as the exam date approaches.

Get Real-Time Feedback from Personal Progress Checks
Personal progress checks in AP Classroom are a great way to ensure your students are continuing to build mastery of content and skills. The real-time results can help you and your students prioritize additional practice before the AP Exam.

Sign In to AP Classroom

Exam Overview

Exam questions assess the course concepts and skills outlined in the course framework. For more information on exam weighting, download the AP Computer Science A Course and Exam Description (CED). Scoring guidelines for each of the sample free-response questions in the CED are also available. The updated Java Quick Reference (.pdf/358KB) for the 2020 exam lists the accessible methods from the Java library that may be included on the exam. The Java Quick Reference is included in the exam booklet.

Encourage your students to visit the AP Computer Science A student page for exam information and exam practice.

  • Event
    • FRI, MAY 15, 2020, 4 PM ET

    AP Computer Science A Exam Day

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Exam Format

The AP Computer Science A Exam will continue to have consistent question types, weighting, and scoring guidelines every year, so you and your students know what to expect on exam day. The overall format of the exam—including the weighting, timing, and number of questions in each exam section—won’t change.

Section 1: Multiple Choice 

40 Questions | 1 Hour 30 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

  • The multiple-choice section includes mostly individual questions, with 1–2 sets of questions (typically 2–3 questions per set).

  • Computational Thinking Practices 1, 2, 4, and 5 are all assessed in the multiple-choice section.

Section 2: Free Response

4 Questions | 1 Hour 30 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

  • All free-response questions assess Computational Thinking Practice 3: Code Implementation, with the following focuses:
    • Question 1: Methods and Control Structures—Students will be asked to write program code to create objects of a class and call methods, and satisfy method specifications using expressions, conditional statements, and iterative statements.
    • Question 2: Classes—Students will be asked to write program code to define a new type by creating a class and satisfy method specifications using expressions, conditional statements, and iterative statements.
    • Question 3: Array/ArrayList - Students will be asked to write program code to satisfy method specifications using expressions, conditional statements, and iterative statements and create, traverse, and manipulate elements in 1D array or ArrayList objects.
    • Question 4: 2D Array—Students will be asked to write program code to satisfy method specifications using expressions, conditional statements, and iterative statements and create, traverse, and manipulate elements in 2D array objects.
 
 

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

For free-response questions (FRQs) from the 2019 exam, along with scoring information, check out the table below.

Be sure to review the Chief Reader Report. In this invaluable resource, the chief reader of the AP Exam compiles feedback from members of the AP Reading leadership to explain how students performed on the FRQs, summarize typical student errors, and address specific concepts and content with which students have struggled the most that year.

2019: Free-Response Questions

The Java Quick Reference (.pdf/358KB) lists the accessible methods from the Java library that may be included on the exam. The Java Quick Reference is included in the exam booklet.