Find the Right Calculator: AP Statistics

Students are expected to bring a graphing calculator to the AP Statistics Exam and to the AP Calculus Exam. These calculators should have specific computational capabilities. The College Board has prepared a list of calculators that have all of the capabilities needed for both exams.

AP Calculator Review

We found many of the AP-approved calculators at Amazon.com, and evaluated each on the following criteria.

  • Price: The price of a new or used calculator, as of September 22, 2014.
  • User rating: From 1 (unacceptable) to 5 (excellent).

Evaluation findings are summarized below.

Best
buys
MakeModelNew priceUsed priceUser
rating
Number
of
raters
CasioFX 2.0$99.98$59.504.022
*CasioFX-CG10$100.00$70.994.591
*CasioFX-9860GIIToo low to display4.559
*CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$48.994.527
*CasioFX9750GII$37.48$34.494.5105
*CasioFX-9750GPLUS$59.99$25.994.527
*Hewlett PackardHP50G$84.00$59.984.5441
Hewlett Packard39GS$39.35$32.994.036
*Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$117.45$64.994.0132
*Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$138.864.5586
*Texas InstrumentsTI-86$30.004.0106
*Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$134.00$87.944.5539
*Texas Instruments84PL/TBL/1L1$90.95$71.504.5785
*Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$160.00$65.004.5505
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$164.99$58.894.068
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$145.00$87.484.576
*Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$175.00$52.764.5127
*Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$82.00$43.994.0913
*Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$120.00$52.984.5113
*Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$17.454.0124
*Texas InstrumentsTI89$196.95$49.994.5233
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$122.99$79.394.588

We only reported results for calculators that were highly rated by students (i.e., calculators that received a satisfaction rating of at least 4 on a 5-point scale). Prices are current, as of September 22, 2014.

Recommendations

The best calculator for you depends on your personal needs. Here are some things to consider.

One More Thing . . .

It is important for each student to bring an AP-approved graphing calculator to the exam. Here's why.

  • The test developers assume that students will have an approved calculator. Students without a calculator will be at a disadvantage.

  • Non-graphing scientific calculators, portable computers, and devices with QWERTY keyboards (e.g., TI-92 plus, TI-Voyage 200) are not permitted. Proctors will check calculators before the exam.

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