Uniform Standards For AP Scores In Illinois Schools Proposed

May 13, 2015

A measure pending in the Illinois legislature would help high school students know what kind of college credit to expect for their advanced placement test scores.

Credit Flickr user Brent Hoard "ECU School of Education Class Room" (CC BY 2.0)

High school students taking AP exams know they have to score at least a three on a five-point scale to pass, but they don't know which Illinois universities will give them credit for that score.

A score of three on a Biology test might earn college credit at Western Illinois University, for example, but not at Illinois State. Same goes for all 34 AP tests across all Illinois universities.  

Fourteen other states including Wisconsin, Indiana and Ohio already accept all AP scores of 3 and above, making them attractive college options for Illinois students. State lawmakers want to set standards here, but colleges oppose the plan.

Senator Pat Maguire, a Democrat from Will County, is sponsoring the bill.

"I was told there is no standard method. It's university by university, campus by campus, and perhaps department by department," he said.

Maguire says he doesn't want to wait for a study.     

"It appears that while some of the best and brightest are leaving Illinois, for other Big 10 schools, we're gonna hold the door open," he said.

The measure passed in the House and is pending in the Senate. College administrations are asking for more time to study the situation.