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 May 5, 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$67.99$4.514.527
CasioFX-9860GSLIM$50.004.09
*CasioFX-9860GII$69.35$59.874.559
*CasioFX-CG10$88.99$69.774.591
*CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$89.89$14.604.527
*CasioFX9750GII$29.00$19.994.5105
*Hewlett PackardHP50G$49.00$35.824.5441
Hewlett Packard39GS$34.95$19.994.036
*Hewlett Packard39G+$75.00$18.954.55
*Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$115.00$89.654.0132
*Texas InstrumentsTI-86$199.99$18.004.0106
*Texas InstrumentsTI89$110.00$38.014.5233
*Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$169.89$30.994.5113
*Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$99.12$56.004.5539
*Texas Instruments84PL/TBL/1L1$59.00$55.954.5785
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$219.99$37.954.068
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$184.97$62.994.576
*Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$84.99$54.724.5127
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$173.99$30.004.588
*Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$54.00$24.954.0913
*Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$99.00$28.994.0124
*Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$135.884.5586
*Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$229.84$40.734.5505

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 May 5, 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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