The typical expectation of many people is that when more students are taking tougher courses the academic rigor of those courses is likely to decline to meet the lower standards of the masses.
But recent results from the Condition of Education, the U.S. Department of Education’s latest annual compendium of education statistics, show otherwise. The number of test takers has risen dramatically over the past eight years, especially among black and Hispanic students. Yet the increase in participation has led to only slight declines in AP-test scores.
In other words, having greater numbers of students taking harder classes pays off, and not just to trumpet greater participation, but in actual achievement.
Let’s motivate even more students to test themselves in the AP world.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Motivation Matters blog.