Top Ten Tips to Excel on an Advanced Placement Biology Exam

Why take advanced placement exams? Well, we are all aware of the benefits of AP programs. Primarily, it helps the student to develop critical study skills and knowledge that is required for further success in the field. A student can earn college credits in high school and thus can save valuable time and money. More than ninety percent of institutions in the U.S. accept AP grades and thus AP students are greatly benefited during college admissions and studies thereafter. An AP exam is different from other exams and a different study approach is required. The following ten tips are a must to achieve a high grade in advanced placement biology exams.

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1. Understand clearly and deeply, not just superficially

The way you study for your regular school exams is different when compared to the way you need to study for an advanced placement biology exam. Just an overview or superficial revision of some terms or concepts is not enough as AP questions test your deep understanding of concepts.

2. Learn to connect as you study

In biology, there are always links from one topic to the next. From the lowest level involving the study of molecules in the cell to the highest level of evolutionary studies, the topics are linked. So, a broader approach in learning is required as AP exams test your understanding on this.

3. Use both theoretical and practical knowledge

Do not ignore the prescribed laboratories for the course as these are based on the text knowledge you have gained and a combined approach of both theory and practice is required to crack AP questions.

4. Answer application questions

Meager understanding of concepts is not enough. You need to be able to apply it to situations. Unless you are able to apply the learned knowledge in a particular situation, high grades in advanced placement biology is not possible.

5. Solve problems that are interdisciplinary

Biology is not just about the structure and functions of organisms. It also involves the numbers including the statistics, the chemistry, physical principles, etc. So practice problems on these will definitely put you ahead.

6. Study hard, it’s not your regular school course

Your regular school course will usually not require you to study to the level of deeper understanding that an AP course does. So the same study strategy or habits you followed for school work is not enough for advanced placement biology.

7. Utilize the help of a teacher

Teachers are there to help you, they make you understand and can evaluate your progress as well as guide you in achieving great AP scores.

8. MCQs, be careful

Nearly sixty percent of questions are those where you need to select answers from the list of options. Don't get confused, be calm and eliminate wrong choices carefully to match the right option pertaining to the question asked.

9. Free-Response questions, answer clearly

Understand the logical linking of various sub questions in the given question and give the complete responses in a lucid way. This will help you to express your knowledge and receive a higher score.

10. Practice, practice and more practice!

Practice answering previous years' MCQs, practice answering free- response questions, practice in time tested conditions, or practice in the presence of tutor. All these practice sessions before your AP exam will give you the confidence and help you show how well you are prepared for the exam.

So, an advanced placement biology exam is different than you actually thought, isn't it? Keeping in mind these ten tips while preparing will definitely help you to excel in AP courses.

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