Best 5 AP Calculus AB Review Books [2022-2023 Edition]

Best 5 AP Calculus AB Review Books [2022-2023 Edition]

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Scoring well on the AP exams is essential to earn placement credits and admission into a competitive college, which will position students for a successful professional future. Studying for the AP Calculus AB exam can be challenging and overwhelming, so we have curated a list of the top 5 AP Calculus AB Review Books in 2022-2023.

AP Calculus AB is an introductory college-level calculus course. Students cultivate their understanding of differential and integral calculus through engaging with real-world problems represented graphically, numerically, analytically, and verbally and using definitions and theorems to build arguments and justify conclusions as they explore concepts like change, limits, and the analysis of functions.

The AP Calculus AB Exam has consistent question types, weighing, and scoring guidelines every year, so students know what to expect on exam day. On the paper exam, calculators are not allowed in Section I Part A and Section II Part B, per the AP Exam Calculator Policy. On the digital exam, calculators will be permitted on all sections.

The Top 5 AP Calculus AB Review Books 2022-2023

1. Princeton Review AP Calculus AB Premium Prep 2022

Studying for the AP Calculus AB exam can be overwhelming and it can be hard to know where to start. This study guide was created by The Princeton Review with the intention of being a one-stop-shop to scoring a 5 on the exam.

The Premium version of The Princeton Review’s comprehensive study guide includes 7 full-length Calculus AB practice tests (more than any major competitor) with complete explanations, plus thorough content reviews, targeted test strategies, and access to online extras. Read more user reviews at Amazon.

Pros:

  • 7 full-length practice tests
  • Targeted test strategies that are proven to work
  • Quick refreshers of concepts with numerous practice questions

Cons:

  • Users report units do not match the test
  • Lacks in-depth explanations of concepts

2. AP Calculus AB Elite Student Edition 2022

5 Steps to a 5: AP Calculus AB is the most updated version of the immensely popular study guide. This study guide includes 3 full-length practice exams that reflect the 2021 exam, as well as up-to-date resources for COVID-19 Exam Disruption. Also, students have access to a robust online platform and hundreds of practice exercises with thorough answer explanations.

This study review guide also provides a self-guided study plan including flashcards, games, and online tools. The book is written in plain, easy-to-understand language, making it perfect for those students who are intimidated by the typical “calculus speak.” It is tailored to the new college board’s focus on conceptual understanding, rather than just formulation. It is recommended by AP Calculus AB teachers, as well as college advisors. Read more user reviews at Amazon.

Pros:

  • Highest reviewed study guide on this list
  • Recommended by high school AP Calculus AB teachers, college advisors, and university professors
  • Includes a self-guided study plan that contains flashcards, knowledge games, and online tools
  • Written in easy-to-understand language to reach students on all academic levels
  • Intended to act as a supplement to the AP classroom in this hybrid school year

Cons:

  • This product has a “multi-platform” model, so not all of the information is in one place

3. Barron’s Calculus AB Review Book 2022-2023

Barron’s AP Calculus AB Review Book provides an in-depth review for the AP Calculus AB exam, which corresponds to a first-year AP Calculus AB class. This study guide includes a diagnostic test that helps students identify and target areas where they need more study. Additionally, there are 2 practice tests that reflect the AP Calculus AB exam. Barron’s AP Calculus AB Review Book also provides practice questions and reviews that cover all test areas.

On top of concept review and practice questions, this study guide also offers tips and advice for dealing with updated problem styles on the exam. Students who purchase this book also gain access to two additional full-length online practice AP Calculus AB tests with all questions answered and explained. These online exams can be easily accessed by smartphone, tablet, or computer. Read more user reviews at Amazon.

Pros:

  • Offers 2 practice exams in the book and 2 online
  • Offers advice on how to use graphing calculators effectively
  • Barron’s has 80 years of experience helping students conquer standardized tests
  • Written in easy-to-read language for both the weak and strong Biology students
  • Includes test-taking tips specific for the AP Biology exam

Cons:

  • Users have reported there are many topics included that are no longer on the test
  • Errors and technical issues reported with the online practice tests

4. 320 AP Calculus AB Problems

320 AP Calculus AB Problems Arranged by Topic and Difficulty Level is the perfect guide to help students ace the AP Calculus exam with a minimum amount of effort. The problems in this book were carefully chosen by a Ph.D. in mathematics with more than a decade of AP Calculus tutoring experience. This study guide is laid out in such a way that any student can immediately find the problems they need to improve upon in a quick and efficient manner.

Using this book, students will learn to solve AP Calculus AB problems in clever and efficient ways that will have them spending less time on each problem, and answering difficult questions with ease.

The main part of the study guide consists of AP Calculus problems arranged by topic and difficulty level. Students will learn many simple techniques to solve AP Calculus problems of all difficulty levels. As they progress through the book, students can build on conceptual knowledge presented in this study guide. Read more user reviews at Amazon.

Pros:

  • Well-organized and a valuable resource for students studying for the AP Calculus AB exam
  • All problems are followed by a solution for easy access
  • Difficulty slowly increases to keep the student from getting overwhelmed

Cons:

  • Most expensive and lowest-rated study guide on this list
  • Layout of the book makes it hard to distinguish the question from the solution

5. Cracking the Calculus AB Exam by Princeton Review

Cracking the AP Calculus AB Exam 2022 by Princeton Review is one of the top-selling study guides on the market. With 7 total practice exams, accompanied by detailed answer explanations, as well as content review chapters full of practice drills, Cracking the AP Calculus AB Exam 2022 is the most highly recommended study guide on this list.

The experts at The Princeton Review have been helping students, parents, and educators achieve the best results on standardized tests since 1981. Like all study guides by The Princeton Review, Cracking the AP Calculus AB Exam 2022 includes proven techniques to help students avoid common pitfalls and increasing effective studying. Read more user reviews at Amazon.

Pros:

  • Study guide is organized in a logical manner
  • Includes 26 sets of practice problems, 18 end-of-chapter drills, and 5 practice exams
  • One of the highest-rated study guides on this list

Cons:

  • No current edition for 2022
  • Numerous reports of incorrect answers to review questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is taking AP Courses important?

Why take an Advanced Placement class? After all, high school is a pressure cooker. You already have to take the SAT, apply to college, and keep up with your extracurriculars. The last thing you may want to do is take a very demanding course, especially one that’s not mandatory. There are several reasons why you may way to consider it.

  • Prepare for college - AP courses can be as challenging as intro college courses
  • Stand out to college admissions officers - AP courses show colleges you can handle the workload
  • Strengthen your GPA - Getting a B in an AP course is often better for your GPA than getting an A in a regular one
  • Study what you love - Getting to choose what you study helps students commit to the workload more easily
  • Get a head start on college requirements - Getting high scores on AP exams equates to college credit at most institutions (save those tuition dollars)

AP classes can boost your GPA and strengthen your college application. But the number of advanced courses you choose to take should depend on your academic interests and your schedule. Talk to your guidance counselor before enrolling in your classes.

What are some of the career paths available to me if I enjoy Calculus?

Students wondering ‘what jobs use calculus?’ or other advanced math skills should know that there are many different careers in various fields that require knowledge of calculus. Students typically study calculus in high school and/or college. While there are many math and statistics degrees available at the postsecondary level that include calculus courses, there are also many other degree programs that require calculus in order to help prepare students for jobs that require calculus.

Many of these careers are in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) disciplines. Some of these jobs that use calculus include job titles like:

  • Astronaut: $66,000/year
  • Aerospace engineer: $80,000/year
  • Mathematician: $75,000/year
  • Software developer: $70,000/year
  • Postsecondary teacher: $43,000/year
  • Economist: $80,000/year
  • Chemical engineer: $100,000/year
  • Operations research analyst: $65,000/year
  • Electrical engineer: $75,000/year
  • Environmental engineer: $75,000/year

How is Calculus at work in my daily life?

Of course, you may not sit down and solve a tricky differential equation on a daily basis, but calculus is still all around you. Did you know that the ability to model and control systems, gives us extraordinary power over the material world?

Calculus is the language of engineers, scientists, and economists. The work of these professionals has a huge impact on our daily life – from your microwaves, cell phones, TV, and car to medicine, economy, and national defense. Aside from applications in traditional science fields, there are additional facets of society where Calculus is at work. Credit card companies use calculus to set the minimum payments due on credit card statements at the exact time the statement is processed by considering multiple variables such as changing interest rates and a fluctuating available balance. Doctors and lawyers use calculus to help build the discipline necessary for solving complex problems, such as diagnosing patients or planning a prosecution case. The field of epidemiology — the study of the spread of infectious disease — relies heavily on calculus. It can be used to determine how far and fast a disease is spreading, where it may have originated from and how to best treat it.

From aerospace to graphic design, there are a plethora of examples of Calculus at work around you.

Not Prep for AP Calculus? Read Reviews of Other College Entry Test Prep Books

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