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 October 31, 2014.
  • User rating: From 1 (unacceptable) to 5 (excellent).

Evaluation findings are summarized below.

Best
buys
MakeModelNew priceUsed priceUser
rating
Number
of
raters
*CasioFX-9750GPLUS$49.99$12.954.527
*CasioFX-9860GII$57.98$42.994.559
*CasioFX-CG10$79.95$65.994.591
*CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$119.99$44.454.527
CasioFX 2.0$99.98$57.004.022
*CasioFX9750GII$37.00$24.494.5105
*Hewlett PackardHP50GToo low to display$59.954.5441
*Hewlett Packard39GS$31.99$27.994.036
*Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$100.00$59.994.0132
*Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$136.844.5586
*Texas InstrumentsTI-86$27.004.0106
*Texas InstrumentsTI89$179.99$44.954.5233
*Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$86.16$77.954.5539
*Texas Instruments84PL/TBL/1L1$93.99$69.734.5785
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$137.00$75.994.588
*Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$74.00$10.004.0124
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$74.00$54.794.068
*Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$138.99$62.004.5505
*Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$119.88$48.974.5113
*Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$150.00$39.004.5127
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$140.00$75.004.576
*Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$79.90$44.744.0913

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 October 31, 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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