The 8 Best AP Biology Prep Books
This wiki has been updated 11 times since it was first published in February of 2018. If you're looking to get a leg up on a STEM major before heading off to college, it's a good idea to take the AP biology exam — and an even better idea to practice ahead of time with one of these prep books. They cover everything that's on the test and provide plenty of tips and tricks for nailing down a strategy, so you'll be more than capable of getting a 5 when the big day comes. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
February 11, 2020:
Taking the AP biology exam offers an excellent way to get ahead of the pack in college, and in an age where competition is fierce, getting every advantage you can is crucial. If you've yet to begin your AP class, it's smart to select a good biology textbook to study from, chosen based on your learning style and objectives, so you can grasp the material the first time around. This means you might end up with a secondary text that is different from the one you're using in class.
This list has been overhauled to reflect the most informative and up-to-date editions to help you clear the exam. We said goodbye to Kaplan Test Prep and Barron's 6th Edition to make way for the more recent and revised Kaplan Test Prep Plus and Barron's AP Biology Premium. We also updated AP Biology Crash Course and The Princeton Review to reflect their 2020 editions. Then, we expanded the list with Barron's AP Q&A Biology, a volume with 600 questions for the student who wants to be rigorously tested on the material.
While some structural exam changes are coming up in 2020, we still chose to keep CliffsNotes AP Biology 5th Edition, Preparing for the Biology AP Exam, and 5 Steps to a 5, despite them not having been revised in the last year. This is because they continue to be helpful and illuminating, are written well, and break down ideas in ways that are easy to comprehend. Many of the same concepts are covered, as well as tips and strategies. Students just need to research the expected 2020 changes (like the removal of grid-in questions) to skip any portions that are no longer relevant.