AP Physics B
AP Physics B was an Advanced Placement science course in which high school students studied Newtonian mechanics, electricity and magnetism, fluid mechanics and thermal physics, waves and optics, and atomic and nuclear physics in preparation for a cumulative exam given each May. The course was non-calculus-based and involved algebra and trigonometry to solve various physics problems. It was supposed to be equivalent to a year-long introductory college course in physics.
The exam was divided into two sections, a multiple choice section (70 questions) and a free response section (6–7 questions). Each section had to be completed within 90 minutes. In order to test knowledge as well as skills, the multiple choice section was taken without a calculator. The free response section would permit the use of a calculator as well as a list of common formulas. The scoring was weighted such that each section was worth fifty percent of the final score. Overall, the exam was configured to approximately cover a set percentage of each of the five target categories:
|Fluid Mechanics and Thermal Physics||15%|
|Electricity and Magnetism||25%|
|Waves and Optics||15%|
|Atomic and Nuclear Physics||10%|
According to the College Board web site, "the Physics B course provides a foundation in physics for students in the life sciences, premedicine, and some applied sciences, as well as other fields not directly related to science."
The grade distributions for the Physics B scores since 2010 are as follows:
|Number of Students||67,312||75,648||80,584||89,263|
Starting in the 2014–2015 school year, AP Physics B will no longer be offered, and AP Physics 1 and AP Physics 2 will take its place. Like AP Physics B, both will be algebra-based, and both will be designed to be taught as year-long courses.
- "AP Physics B". AP Central. College Board. 2011. Archived from the original on 2 July 2011. Retrieved July 24, 2011.
- "AP: Physics B: The Exam". Collegeboard.com. Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "AP: Physics B: Topic Outline". Collegeboard.com. Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- "2006, 2007 AP Physics Course Description" (PDF). Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- 2010 AP Scores Distribution
- 2011 AP Scores Distribution
- 2012 AP Scores Distribution