Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (2023)

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (1)

Practice tests can help you get familiar with the structure of the AP Biology exam and feel more comfortable with the types of questions you'll be expected to answer on test day. Studying with practice tests can also give you insight into the specific struggles you might have with the material as presented on the AP test. You can then focus your studying appropriately to tackle these problems.

In this article, I'll list all the practice tests for AP Biology that you can find online and give you a few tips on how to use them effectively as study aids for both the AP test and any in-class tests you have throughout the school year.

Official AP Biology Practice Exams

Official practice tests provide the best preparation for the AP test. You can be sure that the questions are accurate representations of what you'll see on the final exam.

Unfortunately, I could only find one official practice test for the new version of the AP Biology test since the format and content changed so recently (2012). However, this practice test also has other information that makes it more helpful. It tells you how to calculate your score and includes detailed answer explanations for each question at the end.

Official Practice Test #1

Don't start your practice with this test. It's the most accurate preparation you'll have for the real AP test, so you should save it for towards the end of your second semester when you feel confident that you've mastered the material. It's better to begin studying with the unofficial tests in the next section as a warm-up!

You can also access official free-response questions from 2013, 2014, and 2015 on the College Board website.

Free Response Questions

The free-response section of the AP Biology test is usually considered to be the most difficult part, so it's good to have a little extra practice with these even if you're not answering them in the context of a full practice test.

In addition to these resources, all AP teachers have access to a bunch of free official practice AP tests online. You can ask your teacher if he or she will print a couple out for you to use in your studying.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (2)It might take more than one apple to get those extra practice tests out of your teacher, but ultimately everyone has a price.

(Video) AP Biology Exam Practice Questions

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Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (3)

Unofficial AP Biology Practice Exams

There are many unofficial AP Biology practice tests out there that you can use to help review the material. There's nothing wrong with using these tests to get more practice, but try not to rely on them exclusively because they are not always totally accurate representations of the real AP Biology exam. Some are aligned with the format of the pre-2012 exam, and some are just multiple-choice tests of varying lengths with no free response questions.

Because the AP Biology exam has been revised, you'll get a more accurate estimate of how well you're doing if you use recent practice tests that are aligned with the new test's format. Before 2012, the AP Biology test had 100 multiple-choice questions and four free-response questions rather than the current 63 multiple-choice questions, six grid-in questions, six short free-response questions, and two long free-response questions. The old test was also more memorization-based.

On the current AP Biology exam, you'll have to answer a lot of questions that involve analyzing experimental data using your background knowledge of biology. You won't see questions that just ask you to do something like identify parts of a process in a diagram.

A couple of these unofficial tests do have the same format as the current exam, including the Barron's practice test and all the tests in the "subscription needed" section. You should save these for later on in your second semester when you want to get a more accurate assessment of your readiness for the final exam (and then follow them up with the official practice test in the previous section if you feel confident that you've fixed your problem areas!).

Free AP Biology Practice Tests

Barron's Practice Test

  • Barron's offers a free practice test online that has the same format as the current AP test.
  • You can take it in timed or untimed ("practice") mode.
  • If you use practice mode, you can see answer explanations as you go along.
  • The multiple-choice section has automated scoring, but you'll have to self-score your free-response answers (guidelines are provided).

My Max Score Practice Test

  • This is an old-format test that includes 100 multiple choice questions and four free-response questions.
  • It also has detailed answer explanations for all questions.

Varsity Tutors Diagnostic Tests

  • This is a list of ten multiple-choice diagnostic tests rated by difficulty level.
  • Tests 4-10 have the same number of questions as the real multiple-choice section.
  • Sorry, there are no free-response questions on this site.

Kaplan Practice Tests

  • There are a few unit-specific quizzes here along with two longer practice tests that have almost as many questions as the multiple-choice section on the real exam (58 and 62 as opposed to 63 + 6 grid-ins).
  • There are no free-response questions.

Learning Express 120-Question and 100-Question Practice Tests

  • These are a couple more old-format multiple-choice tests with answers included at the end.
  • If you just want to test yourself on the basic information in the course, these could be useful.

Subscription Needed

Shmoop Practice Tests (free trial available, $24.68 a month for subscription)

  • A subscription to Shmoop will get you access to a diagnostic test plus five full AP Biology practice tests (including both multiple-choice and free-response questions, although these are of course unofficial).
  • Shmoop tries a little too hard to relate to kids with their writing style, but if you're not put off by that, it might be a good resource for you.

BenchPrep Practice Tests (with subscription that costs $30 a month)

  • Here, you'll get access to two full practice tests plus a ton of lessons.

Practice Tests in Review Books

  • You might also decide to order a review book to get access to more practice tests.
  • You'll find some good resources in the books listed in my article on the best AP Biology books for 2016.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (4)Make sure you have some nice fresh erasers cuz your pencils are in for a wild ride across the treacherous terrain of the AP Biology curriculum. Wooohooooo!

(Video) 15 AP Biology Study Tips: How to Get a 4 or 5 in 2022 | Albert

How to Use AP Biology Practice Tests

This section is full of all the advice you need to follow to use AP Biology practice tests effectively during both your first and second semesters in the class.

First Semester: Using Practice Tests for Your Class

Although it might not make sense to take full practice tests yet, you can still use the materials in this article as resources for your studying. Look for free-response questions that relate to what you've learned so far so that you can start to get familiar with their format and expectations.

There are also plenty of sites that have quizzes that touch on specific units in the AP Biology curriculum. These include Learnerator, Varsity Tutors (which I mention above for diagnostic tests, but they also have subject-by-subject quizzes), and Quizlet. These won't be official questions, but they will help prepare you for in-class assessments and serve as a solid introduction to the types of questions you might be asked on the AP test. You should also check out my complete AP Biology review guide for more advice on how you can use online resources to study specific units of the course.

Second Semester: Preparing for the AP Test

By this time, you should be familiar with most of the material that you'll see on the test. This means you can start using full practice tests to judge how you'll score on the AP test and where your weaknesses lie. Remember to time yourself accurately when you take practice tests!
Each time you take and score a practice test, you should also do an evaluation of your mistakes that will inform your studying going forward. Mistakes come in a few different forms, and things can be even more complex on the AP Biology test because there are technically four types of questions.

Focus on the multiple-choice section first, including the grid-ins. Notice whether your mistakes tend to happen on straightforward questions where you just didn't have the content knowledge or on questions that require deeper analysis. Were there specific content areas where you missed a significant number of questions? Keep track of this so that you can go back into your notes and review the appropriate unit(s). These are easy mistakes to fix.

Did you have trouble interpreting and analyzing scenarios on the test even though you knew the background information? The remedy for this is more practice. There are many sites with AP Bio practice questions available. This book of practice questions is also useful because the questions faithfully replicate the new design of the test.

It's possible that your problem lies outside the specifics of the questions and more in the format of the test. Did you run out of time? Make a ton of careless mistakes? The solution to this is greater awareness of your pacing and more practice questions.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (5)Careless mistakes can be avoided by greater awareness of your surroundings. Also, how did someone even fit that big of a gum wad in their mouth? Was a giant chewing gum in this parking lot? Should we be concerned about his current location? I have a lot of questions.

Grid-ins are weird, so you may have had trouble on them if you're not big on the math aspect of biology. Try to find similar problems in your textbook, review book, or online so that you can practice your skills. The more math-oriented biology questions you do over time, the more likely it is that the questions on the test will be aligned with what you've already seen.

After taking your multiple-choice mistakes into account, you can move onto the free response section. Notice which questions gave you the most trouble and why. Did you forget the information you needed, or were you confused about what the question was asking or how to analyze a diagram? Take these findings and apply them to your future practice!

Looking for help studying for your AP exam?

Our one-on-one online AP tutoring services can help you prepare for your AP exams. Get matched with a top tutor who got a high score on the exam you're studying for!

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (6)

Essential AP Biology Practice Testing Tips

Follow these four tips to be sure to get the most out of your AP Biology practice tests.

(Video) WATCH THIS IF YOU WANT TO GET A 5 ON AP BIOLOGY!! | 5 MINUTES HOW TO GET A 5 IN AP BIO

#1: Replicate Realistic Test Conditions

It's always important to be faithful to the rules of the real test when you take practice tests so that your scores accurately reflect your potential. That means an hour and thirty minutes for each section. This is the only way to judge whether time is going to be an issue for you. You should also print out the test so that you take it in the right format. Have a calculator on hand as well. If you're really dedicated, you can even have someone serve as your mock proctor.

#2: Don't Panic if You're Not Familiar With Scenarios You See on the Test

Even if you've gone over every in-class lab that you had to do for AP Biology, you will still run into examples you haven't seen before. It's important not to psych yourself out when this happens. Focus on the diagrams and what you can learn from them, and see if you can think of a related experiment that will clue you into what they mean. Use your common sense; many questions will depend more heavily on your ability to analyze the situation at hand than on your memorization talent.

#3: Give Yourself Plenty of Time for the Grid-Ins

The so-called multiple-choice section also includes six grid-in questions. These questions are at the end of the section, and they will probably take you longer to solve than most multiple-choice questions. Try not to spend more than a minute on each multiple-choice question. If you find that you're taking too much time, you should move on and come back to it later!

#4: Spend 5-10 Minutes Reading the Free-Response Questions Before You Start Writing

It's a smart idea to start with the free-response questions that you know you can answer quickly and accurately. Leading with these questions will boost your confidence and help you avoid problems with time. Use the short reading period to look over all eight free-response questions and see which ones will be easiest for you to tackle.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (7)For example, I would definitely answer a question about snails first. I love snails. My pet snail died not too long ago, and I'm scared to get another one because I don't want to feel that pain again.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (8)

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Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (9)

Conclusion

You should take plenty of practice tests as part of your studying for AP Biology. You can't expect pure memorization to save you on questions that ask you to analyze scenarios you've never seen before. Practice questions are the key to improvement!

You can use a mixture of official and unofficial tests to practice. Just be wary of major differences in your scores from test to test so that you can accurately assess your readiness for the final. You can even use these tests throughout the year to practice for specific units of the course. If you do enough serious practice, the real AP test will be a piece of cake (well, maybe not, but it will be much less traumatizing).

What's Next?

Check out my detailed guide to the AP Biology Exam for more information about what's on this test and how you can prepare for it.

(Video) Various Practice Questions for AP Biology Unit 1

Are you taking both AP tests and SAT Subject Tests? Find out which kind of test is more important and what the major differences are between the two.

Many students take AP classes in the hopes of earning credit for college coursework in high school. Learn more about how AP credit works in college.

One of the single most important parts of your college application is what classes you choose to take in high school (in conjunction with how well you do in those classes). Our team of PrepScholar admissions experts have compiled their knowledge into this single guide to planning out your high school course schedule. We'll advise you on how to balance your schedule between regular and honors/AP/IB courses, how to choose your extracurriculars, and what classes you can't afford not to take.

Every AP Biology Practice Test Available: Free and Official (10)

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Samantha Lindsay

About the Author

Samantha is a blog content writer for PrepScholar. Her goal is to help students adopt a less stressful view of standardized testing and other academic challenges through her articles. Samantha is also passionate about art and graduated with honors from Dartmouth College as a Studio Art major in 2014. In high school, she earned a 2400 on the SAT, 5's on all seven of her AP tests, and was named a National Merit Scholar.

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(Video) Reviewing the 2021 AP Biology FRQ Exam - Administration #1

FAQs

How do I practice for the AP Biology exam? ›

How to Study for AP® Biology: 9 Tips for 4s and 5s
  1. Familiarize yourself with the format of the exam. ...
  2. Get your vocabulary down first! ...
  3. Make flashcards and study sheets with diagrams. ...
  4. Don't lose track of the big picture when studying AP® Biology. ...
  5. Keep on top of your AP® Biology readings. ...
  6. Know the 4 Big Ideas.
1 Mar 2022

Is AP Bio the hardest exam? ›

AP Biology is one of the more difficult APs based on its challenging curriculum, the low rate of students who earn 5s on the exam, and the consensus from students on the demanding nature of the class. Ideally, you should take an Intro to Biology class before you take AP Biology so that you're fully prepared for it.

How many AP Bio FRQS are there? ›

The AP® Biology exam is composed of two sections: multiple choice and free response. There are 60 multiple choice questions and 6 free-response questions (2 long-answer questions and 4 short-answer questions).

Is AP Biology harder than AP Chemistry? ›

However, our son thinks taking AP bio in junior year makes more sense since AP biology tends to be relatively 'easier' than AP chemistry for most kids and his next year classes are rigorous.

What is the pass rate for AP Biology? ›

Since 2017, the passing rate for the AP® Biology exam has remained relatively steady. In 2017, the passing rate was 64.1%, and in 2018, it fell slightly to 61.5%. In 2019, the passing rate for the AP® Biology exam rose again to 64.7%.

Which AP exam has the lowest pass rate? ›

Despite a reputation as one of the most difficult AP classes, Physics 1 is also one of the most popular—137,229 students took it in 2021. Physics 1 has the lowest pass rate of any AP exam (42.1%) along with one of the lowest percentages of students scoring a 5 (just 6.9%).

What is the hardest AP class? ›

Top 10 Hardest AP Classes by Exam Pass Rate
  • Chemistry. 56.1% 10.6%
  • U.S. Government and Politics. 57.5% 15.5%
  • U.S. History. 58.7% 13.0%
  • Human Geography. 59.0% 11.8%
  • European History. 59.3% 13.7%
  • Statistics. 60.0% 16.2%
  • English Literature. 60.1% 9.3%
  • World History.

Is AP exam curved? ›

are some AP test curved? Specially is the AP gov test curved? No AP exams are scored on a curve, ever. On published exams, cut off scores for each grade varied from year to year based on question difficulty.

Is 4 APs too much? ›

Unless you're applying to the most selective universities, 4 to 5 AP courses over your high school years is more than enough. For students applying to the most selective colleges, you might need 7–12. But even so, taking 4 AP courses in a year can be extremely challenging.

Which AP is the easiest? ›

Top 10 Easiest AP Classes by Exam Pass Rate
  • Spanish Literature. 75.1% 17.6%
  • Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism. 74.4% 40.4%
  • Physics 2. 73.3% 14.0%
  • Computer Science Principles. 71.6% 10.9%
  • Psychology. 71.3% 22.4%
  • Computer Science A. 70.4% 25.6%
  • Comparative Government and Politics. 70.2% 24.4%
  • Music Theory.

Is a 4 good on AP Bio? ›

What is a good AP® Biology score? Receiving a 3, 4, or 5 is generally accepted as scoring well on an AP® exam. According to the College Board a 3 is 'qualified,' a 4 'well qualified,' and a 5 'extremely well qualified.

Is it hard to get a 5 on AP Bio? ›

Excelling in AP Biology tends to be more challenging than other popular AP courses. Of the more than 212,000 students who took AP Biology in 2021, less than 10% earned the highest possible score (5) on the exam for this course.

How long is the longest AP exam? ›

How Long Are AP Exams?
ExamDuration
AP Statistics3 hours
AP United States Government and Politics3 hours
AP United States History3 hours, 15 minutes
AP World History: Modern3 hours, 15 minutes
29 more rows
26 Jan 2020

What is a 5 on AP Bio? ›

As mentioned, on the AP Bio test, the multiple-choice section makes up 50% of your score and the free-response section makes up the other 50%.
...
How Is the AP Biology Exam Scored?
Raw ScoreAP Score% of Test Takers Earning Score (2021)
92-12057.4%
72-91419.4%
52-71332.4%
31-51230.0%
1 more row
15 Apr 2022

Should I take apes or AP Bio? ›

Future career and job choices can be considered in choosing a class. If you're pursuing a STEM major in college, it's highly recommended to take AP Biology rather than AP Environmental Science. AP Biology will equip you with more knowledge about foundational biology and prepare you for college-level biology courses.

How many AP classes does the average student take? ›

For students aiming for the Ivy League and Top 20 schools in the United States, a good target is to take (and pass) 10-14 AP classes throughout your high school career — or 3-4 each year.

What is the easiest AP science class? ›

AP Computer Science Principles is rated as the easiest AP class by real AP class alumnae, with an average difficulty rating of just 2.8 / 10 (1 = easiest), though the 2021 pass rate of 67% is not especially high.

How many people fail AP exams? ›

According to a recent study by The College Board, nearly 50% of high school students taking Advanced Placement (AP) courses do not pass the exams to qualify for college credit.

Is AP Bio harder than Apush? ›

From my experience, APUSH was less stressful than AP Bio (and easier). My two older sisters took AP Calc. My oldest sister took AB and wished she took BC (the harder class), and my other sister took BC and enjoyed it, but the teacher they had was one of the best math teachers in our school.

What happens if you fail AP exam? ›

But what happens if you fail an AP exam? Basically, nothing happens if you fail an AP exam. Whether you get a passing or failing AP exam grade, you can still go to college. Colleges do not take a look at the AP exam as the only a criterion for accepting or rejecting a student.

How hard is the AP Bio exam? ›

Excelling in AP Biology tends to be more challenging than other popular AP courses. Of the more than 212,000 students who took AP Biology in 2021, less than 10% earned the highest possible score (5) on the exam for this course.

Can you self study AP Biology? ›

Biology: If you are in an honors biology class, you might consider self-studying for AP Biology because you will only need to supplement what you are learning in class with some additional competencies necessary for the exam. (See the College Board's AP Bio Course and Exam Description.)

What do I need to know before taking AP Bio? ›

Important lab topics include the following:
  • Artificial Selection.
  • Modeling Evolution.
  • Comparing DNA Sequences.
  • Diffusion and Osmosis.
  • Photosynthesis.
  • Cellular Respiration.
  • Mitosis and Meiosis.
  • Bacterial Transformation.
10 Jul 2022

How do you get a 5 on AP Biology exam? ›

How to get a 5 on the AP Biology Exam [Score Estimator Included!]

Which AP is the easiest? ›

Top 10 Easiest AP Classes by Exam Pass Rate
  • Spanish Literature. 75.1% 17.6%
  • Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism. 74.4% 40.4%
  • Physics 2. 73.3% 14.0%
  • Computer Science Principles. 71.6% 10.9%
  • Psychology. 71.3% 22.4%
  • Computer Science A. 70.4% 25.6%
  • Comparative Government and Politics. 70.2% 24.4%
  • Music Theory.

How many AP classes does Harvard require? ›

Freshmen who have taken College Board Advanced Placement exams need a total of four full credits to be eligible for Advanced Standing. Credits are earned by scoring 5 on a minimum of four AP tests.

Which AP is the hardest? ›

AP Physics 1 is considered one of the hardest AP classes, covering topics like Newtonian mechanics and electrical charge and force. Students also spend about 25% of their class time performing college-level lab experiments and writing reports.

What AP exam has the highest pass rate? ›

Chinese,Calculus BC, Japanese, Drawing, and Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism are the AP tests with the highest average scores, but they are all known to be quite difficult.

Do colleges like self study AP? ›

First off, colleges measure students' coursework and performance based on the curriculum offered and the grades earned. Not the AP exam scores. Hence, self-studying for additional subjects is irrelevant because it isn't the same as taking a class and earning semester grades in it.

What happens if you fail an AP exam? ›

What happens if you fail an AP exam? If you fail an AP exam, you will not receive college credit for that course. The good news is that a failed exam does not affect your GPA. In addition, you can retake the AP exam the next year.

What is mostly on the AP Bio exam? ›

One of the biggest challenges in preparing for the AP Biology exam is that it deals with an immense amount of content. The most commonly tested subjects are: Evolution and natural selection, Genetics and the transfer of biological information, Cellular processes, and Ecosystem interactions.

What grade should I take AP Biology? ›

So What's the Right Number of AP Classes?
YearRecommended Number of AP Classes to TakeAP Class Suggestions
11th Grade2-4English Language United States History Biology Chemistry
12th Grade3-4English Literature AB or BC Calculus Statistics Computer Science Physics US Government and Politics Foreign Language
2 more rows
21 Mar 2020

Can a 10th grader take AP Biology? ›

Yes, a 10th grader can take AP Biology if they have already taken the necessary biology and chemistry prerequisites. The College Board recommends that students have completed one year of high school biology and are taking or have completed one year of high school chemistry before taking AP Biology.

Are AP tests curved 2022? ›

The scores on AP® exams are curved every year by the College Board to preserve consistency and standardize student performance.

Is AP exam curved? ›

are some AP test curved? Specially is the AP gov test curved? No AP exams are scored on a curve, ever. On published exams, cut off scores for each grade varied from year to year based on question difficulty.

What is the fastest way to memorize biology? ›

Study Strategies for Biology
  1. Make learning a daily routine.
  2. Flesh out notes in 24-48 hour cycle. “ ...
  3. Study to understand, not just to memorize words.
  4. Learn individual concepts before integrating it together.
  5. Use active study methods.​
  6. You need to test yourself frequently to truly gauge how much you comprehend.

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