The Role of the Proctor
The AP Program uses the term proctor to refer to any adult authorized by the AP coordinator who is present during, and accountable for, the administration of an individual AP Exam. A proctor might be asked to supervise the testing room, read the exam administration script, help distribute or collect exam materials, or accept responsibility for timing the exams and ensuring exam security. The AP coordinators and the SSD coordinators supervise the work of the proctors, the latter for administrations involving students testing with approved accommodations.
Complete information for administering paper exams is in the AP Coordinator’s Manual, Part 2, including a proctor training script.
Note: 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.
Keeping Exam Content Secure
Proctors may never discuss multiple-choice and any unreleased free-response exam content with anyone. If free-response content is not on the College Board website two days after the exam it may not be discussed. (Late-testing content is not released and may never be discussed.)
The following criteria are in place to help ensure that exams are administered properly and to avoid any real or perceived conflict of interest. A conflict of interest may result in score cancellation. The proctor must meet all these criteria:
- Proctors must be responsible adults; they may not be high school students. When selecting proctors, consider the following: reliability, attention to detail, maturity, understanding of the importance of the administration, and understanding and acceptance of the security policies mandated by the AP Program.
- Proctors may be educational professionals; AP coordinators; active, retired, or substitute teachers; parents without a conflict of interest; or members of the administrative staff.
- Current, former, or retired teachers, including AP teachers, may serve as proctors for exams in a subject area other than the one they now teach or have ever taught. This policy also applies to AP coordinators, department heads, and substitute teachers.* For example, a ninth-grade English teacher may not proctor an AP English Language and Composition or AP English Literature and Composition Exam but could proctor an AP Biology Exam. The only exception to this is AP Art and Design; AP Art and Design teachers are encouraged to participate in the AP Art and Design submission process.
- An individual may not proctor an AP Exam or handle materials for an exam in the year in which an immediate family or household member may be taking that exam. Immediate family includes one's parents, siblings, children, grandparents, and spouse. This applies even if they don’t reside in the same household.
- Proctors may not take any AP Exam or review in any manner the content of the exam.
- Proctors may not be employed part or full time at a test preparation company.
- Proctors may not participate in any coaching activity that addresses the content of secure College Board tests.
*Individuals who serve as a substitute teacher in a subject for an extended period of time (i.e., a semester or school year) cannot serve as a proctor of an AP Exam in that subject area.
AP coordinators are expected to provide their proctors with specific information about exam administration procedures. A proctor training script for administering paper exams is available in the AP Coordinator’s Manual, Part 2.
Proctor Tasks and Duties
See proctor duties for a complete list of everything proctors must do before, during, and after the exam administration.