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 August 24, 2016.
  • User rating: From 1 (unacceptable) to 5 (excellent).

Evaluation findings are summarized below.

Best
buys
MakeModelNew priceUsed priceUser
rating
Number
of
raters
*CasioFX-9750GPLUS$72.89$9.004.527
CasioFX 2.0$28.654.022
*CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$12.994.527
*CasioFX-9860GII$72.55$52.884.559
*CasioFX-CG10$99.99$69.994.591
*CasioFX9750GII$32.00$32.284.5105
*Hewlett PackardHP50G$64.00$59.994.5441
Hewlett Packard39GS$33.83$30.004.036
*Hewlett Packard39G+$18.954.55
*Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$129.97$87.954.0132
*Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$159.99$114.994.5586
*Texas InstrumentsTI89$157.89$44.454.5233
*Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$50.954.5113
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$129.99$67.774.588
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$174.97$67.984.576
*Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$187.75$24.954.0124
*Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$82.99$40.954.0913
*Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$180.98$59.954.5505
*Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$72.95$62.904.5539
*Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$207.77$59.004.5127
*Texas Instruments84PL/TBL/1L1$88.00$41.994.5785
*Texas InstrumentsTI-86$199.99$22.214.0106
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$184.44$32.004.068

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 August 24, 2016.

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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