What is Advanced Placement®(AP®)?

Advanced Placement courses are created by the College Board, in the United States of America (USA) and offer students the opportunity to explore college-level curricula during high school. They are highly regarded in many universities across the world. Students applying to competitive universities should consider AP as a necessary component in preparing for admissions. AP demonstrates to universities that students are prepared for the challenges in an undergraduate environment and students who achieve a satisfactory score at the external AP examinations can earn university credits to advance and avoid required introductory courses.  

Advanced Placement® exams dates for 2017-2018

Why should you take AP® courses?

Globally recognised in more than 4,000 colleges and universities in 65 countries.

Stand out in university admissions because having an “AP” on your transcript demonstrates to admission officers that you are experienced in particular fields of study and prepared for the challenges ahead.

       Better prepared for rigorous university studies because AP courses teach skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving and time management. (A recent American study found that students who did not do well in AP exams still do better in university than their classmates who did not take AP.)

A possibility of saving money if you do not need to take certain introductory modules.

Explore your interests and discover your passion, which could be your university major or career.

What should you know about AP® courses?

There are currently 38 courses available and CIA FIRST International School offers 10 in 2017/18

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AP® Calculus AB 

AP® Computer Science Principles

AP® English Language and Composition

AP® Human Geography

AP® World History 


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AP® European History

AP® Statistics

AP® Biology

AP® Physics 1

AP® Macroeconomics[/column]

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AP Environmental Science

AP Microeconomics

AP Music Theory

AP Chinese Language & Culture

AP Literature and Composition


The number of study hours: approximately 4.5 hours of face to face instruction per week plus additional study time. AP courses are considered intensive and demanding. 

Number of AP courses you can take: up to 4 courses starting from Grade 10

Examinations: you may choose whether or not to take an external exam. If you do not wish to do so, AP courses will be reflected on your transcripts with a maximum GPA score of 5.0 (as opposed to 4.0 for regular courses) and 1.5 high school credits (as opposed to 1.0 for regular courses).

External examinations take place annually in May, and your scores will be sent directly to the universities of your choice to assist with the application process.

Cost of external examination: $130 each