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 July 24, 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$43.154.022
*CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$28.004.527
*CasioFX-CG10$80.00$71.994.591
CasioFX-9860GSLIM$150.004.09
*CasioFX-9860GII$65.00$62.944.559
*CasioFX-9750GPLUS$74.32$13.004.527
*CasioFX9750GIIToo low to display$23.944.5105
*Hewlett PackardHP50GToo low to display$50.004.5441
*Hewlett Packard39GS$49.99$25.004.036
*Hewlett Packard39G+$42.834.55
*Texas Instruments33317203956$117.99$61.304.539
*Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$117.99$58.944.0132
*Texas InstrumentsTI-86$100.00$9.994.0106
*Texas InstrumentsTI89$199.99$36.004.5233
*Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$74.99$15.004.0913
*Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$125.00$43.954.5113
*Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$114.00$49.994.5539
*Texas Instruments84PL/TBL/1L1$90.95$60.004.5785
*Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$157.44$53.904.5505
*Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$90.00$20.004.0124
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$110.00$17.904.068
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$115.49$74.954.576
*Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$141.99$32.004.5127
*Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$139.994.5586
*Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$119.87$74.954.588

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 July 24, 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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