AP CSP 2021 Exam Updates

About the Create Performance Task                          

The Create Performance Task requires that you create your own program and then answer questions about it. It is worth 30% of your APCSP exam score. You are required to be given 12 hours of in-class time to complete the project. If you are an independent student, make sure you give yourself enough time to complete the project and answer the questions.

For this task, you can create the project using any programming language or programming tool that you want, but you will need to do the following:

  • Put all your code in a single PDF file.
    • You can do this by either putting screenshots of your code into a document, or by copying and pasting the code into the document. However, depending on what you use, text-based languages, like Python, will lose their syntax highlighting (the colors of the text within the code) when you copy/paste them. They may also lose some of the spacing when you paste them into different documents.
  • Screen capture a minute of your program running, showing different inputs and outputs. This video will need to be uploaded as part of your project.
  • All answers to the questions for the task will need to be answered in the AP Digital Portfolio itself.

The due date for this task has been extended to May 20, 2021 @ 11:59pm. However, you should aim to complete and submit to this task by May 12, 2021 to give yourself some time to review. Also, many students tend  to wait to submit until the last day, which can cause their website to slow down. To avoid errors, aim to submit your solution much earlier than the extended date.

Here are some important links to help you with the Create Performance Task:

Exam Changes                                              

The APCSP exam consists of 70 multiple-choice questions over a 120-minute period. Each question has 4 choices. There will be:

  • 57 single-select multiple-choice
  • 5 single-select with a reading passage about a computing innovation
  • 8 multiple-select multiple-choice: choose 2 answers

It will be worth 70% of your APCSP score.

This year, there will be two versions of the exam available for students to take. One will be on paper and the other will be digital. Digital exams can be administered in-school or at home. There are also three different dates for this exam:

Date & Time
Exam Type
May 17, 2021 @ 8:00 AM
Paper Exam
May 26, 2021 @ 4:00 PM
Digital Exam
June 7, 2021 @ 4:00 PM
Digital Exam

If a student misses the paper exam date, they can be signed up for one of the digital exams at any point in time up to one week prior to the exam date. This means that if a student is unable to take the paper exam on May 17th, the school where they are taking the exam can register them for the exam on May 26th no later than May 19th. 

Students cannot sign up for which exam they'd like to take on their own. The AP Coordinator at the school where they are registered to take the exam must do that for them. For those students who will be testing at Mineola High School, we will have more information for you regarding this soon, which will be sent to your emails.

Here are some important links if you'd like to learn more about these changes:

About the Digital Exam                               

Digital exams this year will be full-length exams with all parts included. These exams will test the same knowledge and skills as the paper exams. For APCSP, both the second and third administrations of the exam will be digital. Students will need to install the digital exam application on the computer they will use for the test. Beginning in April, the application will be available for download.

Important Notes:

  • Students will need to complete exam setup before the exam day. The setup will be available 3 days before exam day and must be completed no later than the day before exam day. 
  • The exam will start promptly at 4pm Eastern Daylight Time, but students will need to check in online 30 minutes before the official start time.
  • During the exam, students must have a reliable internet connection. However, if there are internet connectivity disruptions, the testing application will still work. 

The biggest downside to the digital exam is the exam security procedures. Students will not be able to return to answered questions or move back-and-forth between unanswered questions. If you have a problem with this, then you should opt for the earlier paper and pen exam, leaving the digital exam as a backup option in case you are unable to take it in person.

You can read more about digital exams by clicking here.

AP Digital Exam Testing Guide