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Best Colleges That Accept AP Scores of 3: Top 10 Schools To Consider

Finding the best colleges that accept AP scores of 3 could unlock the opportunity to get advanced placement in your desired program. If you have an affinity for a particular subject in high school, finding colleges that offer college credits for your AP scores can be a massive benefit.

We found 10 top-ranked institutions that accept AP scores of 3 and higher for prospective students to consider. Each of these schools meets the following criteria:

  • An average annual cost of no more than $28,000
  • A median starting salary no lower than $35,000
  • Accredited programs by recognized bodies

10 Best Colleges That Accept AP Scores of 3

1. University of Washington

4 Year; Seattle, WA

Average Annual Cost: $12,017

The University of Washington is one of the many schools that recognize AP scores on a scale from 1 to 5. If you have a score of 3 or higher, you could be awarded college credits while being placed in UW courses. That said, each department has specifications for the AP scores required to receive college credits.

The University of Washington does not allow students to use their AP test results instead of admission requirements. You will need to meet the eligibility requirements for admission and submit your scores before being granted credits.

A few examples of the courses that require a minimum AP score of 3 to receive credit awards include:

  • Art (ART 102-104 and ART H 100)
  • Arabic Language (Arabic 201)
  • Biology (BIOL 161)
  • Economics (ECON 190 and 191)
  • Geography (GEOG 100)
  • Physics (PHYS 101 and 102)

To learn more about the AP score requirements at the University of Washington, visit this link.

2. Brigham Young University

4 Year; Provo, UT

Average Annual Cost: $13,474

Brigham Young University is the most popular university in all of Utah, offering many different study avenues for students. They are another one of the top-ranked institutions in the United States that recognize AP scores in exchange for college credits.

That said, the school only awards elective credits for exams that don’t receive a specific course or GE credit. There are a few different courses you could receive credits for if you receive a 3 or higher on your AP tests. However, you will find far more opportunities if your scores are 4 or higher.

A few examples of the different courses at BYU that allow credits for AP scores of 3 include:

  • French Language and Culture (FREN 101 and 102)
  • Art History (ARTHC 111)
  • Biology (BIO 100)
  • Calculus AB (MATH 110 and 111)
  • Chinese Language and Culture (CHIN 101)
  • German Language and Culture (GERM 101 and 102)
  • Human Geography (GEOG 130)

Another critical facet to note with the fulfilled course credits you will receive is that they vary significantly based on your AP score. For example, students with 4 or 5 AP scores will receive over seven credit hours for related courses. With a score of 3, you’ll receive between three and five credit hours per course.

To learn more about the AP guide for Brigham Young University, visit this link.

3. Wayne State University

4 Year; Detroit, MI

Average Annual Cost: $13,962

Wayne State University helps make it considerably easier for students to use their AP scores to receive credits for their college degrees. Unlike other schools, the university doesn’t limit the number of transferable credits for AP, IB, or CLEP tests. That said, you can use your previously acquired AP scores to receive equivalent college credits.

Another massive benefit of attending this school with AP scores of 3 is that there is an endless list of courses you can get credits for. A few of the most popular examples include:

  • Computer Science AB (CSC 1100 and 1101)
  • Environmental Science (ESG 1500)
  • American Government (PS 1030)
  • Art History (AH 1000)
  • Chemistry (CHM 1100/1130)
  • Physics B (PHY 2130/2131)

One of the more unique features of using your AP scores at Wayne State University is their selection of general electives. Students can use their prior knowledge to acquire a couple of different general electives, such as research and seminar credits.

To learn more about the AP guide for Wayne State University, visit this link.

4. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

4 Year; Champaign, IL

Average Annual Cost: $14,321

At the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, students must check the advanced placement guide yearly to see what their AP scores are worth. The school recommends checking the 2022 and spring 2023 admission guidelines to determine how many credit hours you could receive.

That said, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has many courses that accept AP scores between 3 and 5. Another top recommendation is to talk with your counselor to determine which courses are best to transfer your AP scores to. A few examples of popular courses that accept AP scores include:

  • Calculus AB (Math 234)
  • Drawing (Art 102)
  • English Language & Composition (Rhetoric 1)
  • Macroeconomics (Economics 1)
  • Physics (Physics 1)
  • Statistics (Statistics 1)

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, visit this link.

5. University of California – Los Angeles

4 Year; Los Angeles, CA

Average Annual Cost: $15,023

The University of California – Los Angeles is proud to announce they accept AP exam scores of 3 or higher. Determining what you can use your credits on is dependent on the major you are studying in college. That said, it’s important to consider what AP courses and exams to take before enrolling at UCLA.

Like many other schools on this list, there are multiple courses where your AP scores could be helpful. Several examples include:

  • AP Physics 1 and 2
  • AP Psychology
  • AP Spanish Language and Culture
  • AP Microeconomics
  • AP United States History
  • AP Statistics
  • AP World History: Modern

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of California – Los Angeles, visit this link.

6. Stony Brook University

4 Year; Stony Brook, NY

Average Annual Cost: $16,119

At Stony Brook University, students looking to use their advanced placement credits will have numerous opportunities available. To use these credits in exchange for university credits, students must submit their AP records to the Undergraduate Admissions Office.

Depending on your major, your academic department will determine the test scores required to receive equivalent Stony Brook University credits. Let’s look at some of the options students have with an AP score of 3.

  • Art History
  • Biology
  • English
  • Japanese
  • Psychology
  • US History
  • European History
  • US Government and Politics
  • Statistics
  • Spanish
  • Research
  • Seminar

To learn more about the AP guide for Stony Brook University, visit this link.

7. University of Wisconsin – Madison

4 Year; Madison, WI

Average Annual Cost: $17,234

If you have completed college-level coursework in high school and are looking to use these credits toward advanced placement, the University of Wisconsin – Madison can help. They accept several different credit types showing students’ high academic achievement levels, such as A-Level, IB, CLEP, and Cambridge Pre-U exam scores.

At the University of Wisconsin – Madison, your AP credits can go towards electives, degree requirements, or general education requirements. You’ll have enhanced flexibility when planning your studies, allowing you to complete two majors or even graduate early.

Fortunately, the vast majority of programs at this school recognize AP scores between 3 and 5. A few examples of popular course credits you could receive include:

  • Biology (BIO SCI X01)
  • Art Studio – 3D Design (GEN ELCT X12)
  • Computer Science Principles (GEN ELCT X12)
  • English Literature & Comp (LIT X10)
  • World History (GEN ELCT X12)
  • Japanese (ASIALANG X10)

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of Wisconsin – Madison, visit this link.

8. University of Rhode Island

4 Year; Kingston, RI

Average Annual Cost: $18,638

The AP credit submission process at the University of Rhode Island is relatively straightforward. You will need to submit your records while providing proof of identification to ensure the scores can be attributed to you. The school will also take independent steps to verify your scores match your identity.

Several examples of top programs that accept AP scores of 3 or higher include:

  • AP Calculus BC
  • AP Biology
  • AP Comparative Government & Politics
  • AP Computer Science
  • AP Italian Language and Culture
  • AP Music Theory
  • AP Macroeconomics

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of Rhode Island, visit this link.

9. University of Oklahoma

4 Year; Norman, OK

Average Annual Cost: $21,122

If you want to attend the University of Oklahoma, you will be glad to know they accept AP scores from high school students. According to the school, as of July 2021, the university does not require AP exam scores above 3 to award credit. However, scores must be higher than 1 or 2.

With the passing of this legislation, you will find the opportunities for earning college credits with AP scores of 3 are vastly larger. At the University of Oklahoma, students can receive credits for several courses, including:

  • Computer Science
  • Biology
  • Art and Design
  • Latin
  • Math
  • Music Theory
  • Human Geography
  • Government and Politics

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of Oklahoma, visit this link.

10. University of Richmond

4 Year; Richmond, VA

Average Annual Cost: $27,050

The University of Richmond is a fantastic institution for students interested in using AP scores for college credit. Like other universities, it requires AP scores to be sent directly to the College Board at the University of Richmond.

Once this has been completed and the scores are verified, students can then put them towards their area of study. A few examples of top University of Richmond courses accepting AP scores of 3 include:

  • Calculus BC
  • Computer Science A
  • Spanish Language or Literature
  • French, German, Italian, Japanese, or Chinese Language or Literature

To learn more about the AP guide for the University of Richmond, visit this link.

Use Your AP Scores for College Credit Today!

When researching the best colleges that accept AP scores of 3, ensure you pick a school that recognizes your excellent work for ample college credits. Using this experience, you can vastly decrease the time spent in college, allowing you to explore your future career sooner.

Fortunately, many excellent programs are readily available for AP students to take advantage of. It’s up to you to find the school that suits you perfectly.