Newsletter for the Section on Statistical Education
Volume 6, Number 1 (Winter 2000)
This was another tremendous growth year for AP Statistics, with the number of exams increasing from about 15,500 in 1998 to approximately 24,700 operational exams and 500 alternate exams in 1999. The exam again consisted of a multiple-choice section and a free response section. The free response section had the same structure as in previous years (5 shorter questions and a longer investigative task). The multiple-choice section was lengthened from 35 to 40 questions.
The 1999 reading of the free response questions took place at University of Nebraska. A total of 17 leaders and 105 readers scored the exam. As in previous years, the free response questions were graded on a five point scale (0 - 4) using holistic rubrics. Table leaders revised rubrics during the three days prior to the reading, and training packets were prepared. Sufficient time was allocated during the reading to train readers and to allow them to practice on selected student responses. The table leaders felt that this method was successful and allowed for consistent and fair scoring of responses to questions for which several different approaches could be correct.
We expect another big increase in the number of students taking the exam in 2000. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) is estimating 38,000 students will take the exam! As a result, we will be looking for new readers, especially folks that teach introductory statistics at a college or university. The reading is great fun (really!) and you get to work with an amazing group of people. ETS covers expenses, travel, and pays a stipend. If you are interested, you can apply to be a reader by going to the College Board web site (http://www.collegeboard.org/ap/teachers/) and then selecting the link to "The AP Reading" and then to "Complete the Faculty Consultant Application".