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AP, IB and Pre-College Credits

Brooks School Placement Equivalencies for students entering between Fall 2019 and Fall 2024.

For students entering Cornell as first-year students, no more than 15 credits earned elsewhere (e.g. AP/IB, college courses earned in-absentia) may be applied to the 120 credits required for graduation. The College and departments/programs may place additional limits on how AP or in-absentia credits may apply to particular requirements. Students with questions about specific transfer credits should work with the registrar’s office.

The Brooks School Registrar’s Office will process AP credit upon receipt from the testing service.  Please check the Transfer Credit Report on Student Center to confirm your credit has been posted.  For those with more than 15 credits of AP coursework, you will need to inform the Registrar’s Office which credits you wish to accept.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you take the equivalent course at Cornell you forfeit your AP credit (example: you have AP Psychology score of 5 and you take PSYCH 1101, you will forfeit your AP Psychology credit).

Common Equivalencies

Additional AP/IB credit equivalencies can be found in the Courses of Study

Note: An IB HL Biology, score of 6 and 7 are counted the same as AP Biology score of 4 and 5, respectively.

  • PAM/Public Policy
    AP Biology score of 5 = 8 credits may count toward the Natural Science I Requirement.AP Biology score of 4 = credit is only applied as Elective credit once student has completed the Natural Science requirement with Chemistry or Physics. No AP credit may be used for the Natural Science II Requirement
  • HCP
    AP Biology score of 5 = 3 credits may be used towards 1 semester of Introductory Biology. Must take one semester of Introductory Biology lecture with lab to complete requirement.
    AP Biology score of 4 = not accepted

AP Calculus AB score of 4, or 5 = 4 credits towards Electives
AP Calculus BC score of 4 or 5 = 8 credits towards Mathematics requirement
IB HL Mathematics AA or AI score of 6 or 7 = 4 credits toward the Mathematics requirement

AP Microeconomics Score of 5 = 3 credits, ECON 1110
AP Macroeconomics Score of 5 = 3 credits, ECON 1120
IB HL Economics Score of 7 = 6 credits, ECON 1110 and ECON 1120

AP English Literature score of 5 = 3 credits, places you out of 1 FWS
AP English Language score of 5 = 3 credits, places you out of 1 FWS

If you have two AP English scores of 5, you can use one to place you out of one FWS. You will not receive credit for the second AP English exam. If you take both FWS at Cornell, you will not receive any credit for AP English exams.

IB HL English score of 7 = 3 credits, places you out of 1 FWS. IB HL English score of 6 is not accepted and awards no credit.


AP/IB Credit FAQs

What about other AP or IB exams?

Above reflects the AP and IB courses most commonly completed by Brooks School students. For other courses, please refer to the AP credit allocation found in the Courses of Study. Students must follow the policies for the year matriculated. For example a student who joins in fall 2023 will follow the 2023-2024 courses of study. Please note that Cornell no longer accepts credit for AP US Government & Politics, AP US History, AP European History, AP World History.

Do you accept AP or IB statistics?

Credit is not accepted for AP or IB statistics. Statistics is a critical skill set for studying public policy. Therefore, all Brooks School majors must take PUBPOL 2101 at Cornell.

How many AP/IB credits can I transfer?

Students entering as first year students are allowed to transfer 15 credits from AP/pre-college and In Absentia combined. In Absentia credit comes from credit taken at another institution after you’ve matriculated to Cornell. Once the 15 credit AP/In Absentia limit has been reached, AP exams may be used as prerequisites for higher level courses or to fulfill requirements, although the credits will not count toward graduation.

Should I use AP or IB credits if I am pre-med/pre-health?

Generally it is encouraged to take all pre-health preparatory courses at Cornell. Pre-med/health students are encouraged to speak with a pre-health advisor before using an AP or IB course for any pre-health coursework.

What if I took another course in high school through my local college (not AP or IB)?

Cornell University does not accept credit for courses sponsored by colleges but taught in high school to high school students, even if the college provides a transcript of such work.

Can AP/IB credits count towards the Public Policy language requirement?

No, students are required to take the language requirement at Cornell. If students take a higher level language course or an alternate language, the AP/IB credit non-English language equivalencies as noted in the Courses of Study can count towards general electives.

Can I get credit for Standard Level (SL) IB exams?

No, Cornell only accepts Higher Level (HL) IB exams. More information can be found in the Courses of Study.