This page provides a summary of proctor duties before, during, and after AP Exams. Also be sure to visit Choosing & Preparing Proctors for more information about proctors. Proctoring digital AP Exams is different from proctoring paper exams. See information at Digital AP Exams. Separate materials will be available in early 2024 for proctors for digital AP Exams.
Before the exam administration, proctors should:
- Familiarize themselves ahead of time with the administration and exam security procedures in the AP Coordinator’s Manual, Part 2.
- Familiarize themselves with any special equipment (such as CD players or digital recording equipment) well before exam day. (Note: Master CDs must not be opened before the exam administration.)
- If administering exams to students testing with accommodations, familiarize themselves with the students’ specific accommodations and, for exams with extended time, understand how to time each section.
- Read all the general and the appropriate subject-specific exam administration instructions in the Exam Instructions book to understand the flow of the administration.
- If proctoring the AP Chinese or AP Japanese Exams, review all exam day procedures and the proctor script in the AP Chinese and AP Japanese Exams: Setup and Administration Guide (available in early 2024 at collegeboard.org/apcj-examadmin).
- Prepare the exam rooms.
- Set up exam equipment (such as CD players, computers, and digital recording devices).
- Talk to the AP coordinator about the process to distribute the AP ID label sheets.
- If proctoring an exam at an off-site location, familiarize themselves with all off-site testing requirements.
On exam day, before the administration, proctors should:
- Bring all necessary materials to the exam room.
- Count and check the exams received for the exam administration upon arrival in the exam room. Confirm the exam title of each AP Exam to be sure that no other exams are included. Don’t open the shrinkwrap on exam packets.
- Ensure there is 1 personalized AP ID label sheet for each student testing.
- Admit and assign seats to students. Use a preassigned seating chart if provided by the AP coordinator. (Review the AP Seating Policy.)
- Check identification of homeschooled students and/or students from other schools.
- Check that students with disabilities have brought their SSD Student Accommodations Letters to verify that they are approved for these accommodations.
- Ensure the exam room is set up to meet AP Program testing room compliance requirements.
- Ensure the proper seating distance is maintained between students and that all students are facing the same direction.
On exam day, during the exam administration, proctors should:
- Distribute exam materials.
- Read the General Instructions and the instructions for the exam being administered.
- Ensure students properly complete the identification information.
- Note and post the start and stop times for each section after reading the relevant instructions. Proctors must not write the start and stop times in advance of the administration because this might affect the testing time.
- Supervise the testing room at all times, including during the break. Exam materials must never be left alone.
- Guard against attempts at cheating.
- Create a seating chart (or use the one provided by the AP coordinator).
- Walk around the room to ensure students are working on the correct exam section.
- Supply pens, pencils, calculators (when appropriate), and extra paper (as necessary).
- If an incident occurs, follow the instructions in the Administration Incidents section of the 2023-24 AP Coordinators Manual, Part 2 (or the 2023-24 AP Chinese and AP Japanese Exams: Setup and Administration Guide).
- Never read, eat, drink, engage in conversation, correct papers, or perform any activity not related to the administration.
- Never use phones/mobile devices during the exam unless it's an emergency or an administration incident warrants it. If a proctor has a mobile device, it must be set to silent so it won’t cause a disturbance or be a distraction.
- For AP world language and culture and AP Music Theory Exams: Assist students with the operation of digital recording devices.
On exam day, after the exam administration, proctors should:
- Collect and account for all exam materials before dismissal.
- Ensure students have properly identified their exam materials (with AP ID labels, etc.).
- Dismiss students, making sure they don't take any exam materials from the exam room.
- Students must be dismissed at the same time. However, groups recording speaking responses for the world language and culture exams and individuals recording sight-singing responses for the AP Music Theory Exam may be dismissed as they complete their recordings provided they don’t have contact with students who haven’t finished their exam recording sessions.
- Return all exam materials to secure storage or wait for the AP coordinator to collect the exam materials from the exam site. (Proctors should follow the post-exam instructions provided by the AP coordinator.)
- For AP world language and culture and AP Music Theory Exams, ensure student audio responses have been properly saved in MP3 format (1 file for each student) and named with the student AP ID and exam form.
- For AP U.S. History, AP European History, and AP World History: Modern, insert all the short-answer response booklets inside the yellow short-answer response booklet return envelope(s) before leaving the testing room.
What Proctors Need
- The AP Coordinator’s Manual, Part 2 and the AP Exam Instructions. If administering the AP Chinese or AP Japanese Exams, proctors also need the AP Chinese and AP Japanese Exams: Setup and Administration Guide.
- Shrinkwrapped exam packets, any associated CDs, and all equipment related to these materials.
- Answer sheets.
- The AP ID label sheets for the students taking the exam being administered.
- Pencil sharpener.
- Extra No. 2 pencils with erasers (recommended: have enough pencils so students don’t have to share and so they can keep their pencils at the end of the exam).
- Extra pens with black or dark blue ink (recommended: have enough pens so students don’t have to share and so they can keep their pens at the end of the exam).
- Extra paper in case a student’s response exceeds the space allotted in the free-response booklet.
- Stapler to attach extra paper, if used, to short-answer response booklets and/or free-response booklets.
- Extra calculators for AP Biology, Calculus, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, Precalculus, Physics, and Statistics. Visit the AP Calculator Policy page for information.
- A watch (but not a stopwatch). Each exam room should have at least 2 synchronized timepieces as a check against mistiming, and a clock should be visible to all students.
- A school may use a computer to display the time, provided that no personnel other than the responsible coordinator or proctor have access to the computer and the computer is not connected to the internet during the administration. No other content should be displayed aside from the clock.
- Door signs: “Exam In Progress” and “No Devices.”