Find the Right Calculator

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 September 25, 2018.
  • User rating: From 1 (unacceptable) to 5 (excellent).

Evaluation findings are summarized below.

MakeModelNew
price
Used
price
User
rating
Num
raters
CasioFX-9750GPLUS$30.003.538
CasioCFX-9850GC PLUS$150.003.539
CasioFX9750GII$47.99$25.994.5655
CasioFX-CG10$88.99$64.994.5218
CasioFX-9860GII$74.90$53.984.6254
Hewlett PackardF2226A$45.003.531
Hewlett Packard39G+$99.99$29.994.05
Hewlett PackardHP50G$379.99$75.004.5871
Texas InstrumentsN3CAS/CLM/2L1$125.00$109.554.62006
Texas InstrumentsFBA_84PLCE/TBL/1L1/W$134.994.813
Texas InstrumentsTI84PLSCELIGHTNTI84PLSCELIGHTN$123.884.476
Texas Instruments84PL/PWB/2L1/A$67.00$69.954.53908
Texas Instruments84PLCE/TBL/1L1$131.69$1,109.894.51448
Texas Instruments83PL/TBL/1L1$84.43$34.894.02112
Texas InstrumentsTI83PLUSSILVER$82.00$28.293.9214
Texas Instruments84PLSE/CLM/ILI/E$299.99$70.954.0139
Texas InstrumentsNSCAS/PWB/1L1$29.994.3188
Texas InstrumentsNS/CLM/1L1/B$189.99$19.953.9162
Texas Instruments84PLSE/TBL/1L1/D$239.89$79.994.2150
Texas InstrumentsTINSPIRECXCASFF$139.01$123.954.5427
Texas InstrumentsN3/GC/1L1/B$117.00$97.654.3854
Texas InstrumentsN2/CLM/1L1$95.00$64.954.1186
Texas InstrumentsTI-84 PLUS SILV$149.99$45.864.0871
Texas InstrumentsTI89 TITANIUM$122.49$60.004.31030

We only reported results for calculators that received reasonably acceptable ratings from students (i.e., calculators that received a satisfaction rating of at least 3.5 on a 5-point scale). Prices are current, as of September 25, 2018.

Recommendations

The best calculator for you depends on your personal needs. Here are some things to consider.

  • Cost. If you want a new calculator at a low price, choose the FX9750GII. If you want a used calculator at a low price, choose the NS/CLM/1L1/B.
  • User satisfaction. The highest rated calculator was the FBA_84PLCE/TBL/1L1/W, with a satisfaction rating of 4.8.
  • Peace of mind. If you are looking for a calculator with a favorable satisfaction score based on ratings from a large number of users, consider the FX-9860GII or the N3CAS/CLM/2L1. Both calculators received a satisfaction score of 4.6, based on ratings from at least 100 users.

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.

* AP and Advanced Placement Program are registered trademarks of the College Board, which was not involved in the production of, and does not endorse this website.