AP Chemistry Score Information

Learn What Score You'll Need and What Course Credit You'll Receive

Chemical Model
Chemical Model. Charles Clegg / Flickr

The AP Chemistry exam was taken by over 153,000 students in 2016. Most colleges and universities have a science and lab requirement, so a high score on the AP Chemistry exam will sometimes fulfill this requirement.

The mean score for the AP Chemistry exam was 2.69, and the scores were distributed as follows (2016 data):

  • 5 - 10.5%
  • 4 - 15.6%
  • 3 - 27.5%
  • 2 - 24.8%
  • 1 - 21.6%

The table below presents some representative data from a variety of colleges and universities.

This information is meant to provide a general picture of the way that selective colleges view the AP Chemistry exam. You'll see that all the schools do offer credit for a strong score on the chemistry exam, even if just general credits with no placement--AP Chemistry is one of the more widely-accepted exams. Note that all of the private institutions require at least a 4 on the exam to earn credit while all the public institutions except for Georgia Tech will accept a 3. Keep in mind that AP placement data changes frequently, so be sure to check with a college's Registrar to get the most up-to-date information.

AP Chemistry Scores and Placement
CollegeScore NeededPlacement Credit
Georgia Tech5CHEM 1310 (4 semester hours)
Grinnell College4 or 54 semester credits; CHM 129
Hamilton College4 or 51 credit after completing CHEM 125 and/or 190
LSU3, 4 or 5CHEM 1201, 1202 (6 credits) for a 3; CHEM 1421, 1422 (6 credits) for a 4 or 5
MIT-no credit or placement for AP Chemistry
Mississippi State University3, 4 or 5CH 1213 (3 credits) for a 3; CH 1213 and CH 1223 (6 credits) for a 4 or 5
Notre Dame4 or 5Chemistry 10101 (3 credits) for a 4; Chemistry 10171 (4 credits) for a 5
Reed College4 or 51 credit; no placement
Stanford University5CHEM 33; 4 quarter units
Truman State University3, 4 or 5CHEM 100 Chemistry (4 credits) for a 3; CHEM 120 Chemical Principles I (5 credits) for a 4 or 5
UCLA (School of Letters and Science)3, 4 or 58 credits and Introductory CHEM for a 3; 8 credits and General CHEM for a 4 or 5
Yale University51 credit; CHEM 112a, 113b, 114a, 115b

More on Advanced Placement Exams:

Course credit and placement aren't the only reasons to take AP Chemistry. When applying to colleges, a strong academic record will be the most important part of your application. Colleges want to see that you have succeeded in the most challenging courses available to you, and AP, IB, and Honors all play an important role on this front.

Doing well in Advanced Placement classes (and AP exams) is a far better predictor of future college success than standardized tests such as the SAT or ACT.

Score and placement info for other AP subjects: Biology | Calculus AB | Calculus BC | Chemistry | English Language | English Literature | European History | Physics 1 | Psychology | Spanish Language | Statistics | U.S. Government | U.S. History | World History

For more information on AP classes and exams, check out these articles:

To learn more specific information about the AP Chemistry exam, be sure to visit the official College Board website.

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Grove, Allen. "AP Chemistry Score Information." ThoughtCo, Jan. 13, 2017, thoughtco.com/ap-chemistry-score-information-786948. Grove, Allen. (2017, January 13). AP Chemistry Score Information. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/ap-chemistry-score-information-786948 Grove, Allen. "AP Chemistry Score Information." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/ap-chemistry-score-information-786948 (accessed March 20, 2018).