Understanding Score Cancellation and Score Withholding in AP Exams

Understanding Score Cancellation and Score Withholding in AP Exams

Embarking on the journey of Advanced Placement (AP) exams is no small feat. As students, you invest time, effort, and dedication to showcase your mastery of challenging subjects. However, there may be instances where you find yourself contemplating the options of canceling or withholding your AP scores.
Let's delve into the nuances of these decisions to help the students make informed choices.

Score Cancellation: A Second Chance

  • Purpose: The College Board allows score cancellation to provide a reset for students facing unexpected challenges on exam day.
  • Process: After the exam, students can cancel scores online within a limited timeframe.
  • Clean Slate: Canceled scores do not appear on the official report, offering a fresh start for future attempts.
  • Considerations: Students should weigh the decision considering the circumstances, readiness for a retake, and college admission policies.

How to cancel your AP Exam Scores

1. Students should submit the Score Cancellation Form filled out correctly with their parent/guardian's signature.
2. Mail or fax the form to the address on the form by June 15 of the year you took the exam.

Score Withholding: Treading Cautiously

  • Uncertainty Handling: Use score withholding when uncertain about exam performance but want to keep options open.
  • Post-Exam Decision: Decide to withhold scores online after the exam, allowing time for reflection.
  • Financial Aspect: Consider the fee associated with score withholding and factor it into decision-making.
  • Strategic Control: Withholding scores offers control over the admissions process, letting students strategically choose which scores align best with their college application strategy.
  • Timing Awareness: Be mindful of application deadlines, ensuring enough time to make informed decisions about sending scores.

How to Withhold Your AP Exam Scores

1. Students should fill out their AP Score Withholding Form with their information, including which exam scores they want to withhold. 
2. Sign the form.
3. Pay the fee of $10 per score. 
4. Send the form and payment receipt to the address provided on the form.


In the realm of AP exams, the options to cancel or withhold scores offer flexibility and control to students navigating the uncertainties of academic challenges. As students embark on this journey, remember that these decisions are tools at their disposal. Thoughtful consideration and understanding of the implications will empower them to make choices that align with their academic goals. Whether it's seizing a second chance through score cancellation or strategically navigating admissions with score withholding, the power is in their hands.

Best of luck for your AP Exams 2024!


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