The One AP Class Students Should Always Avoid
At Seowon Academy, we advise our students on taking certain classes. But there is one AP course that we always tell our students to avoid.
To understand why, we need to have some insight into the nature of the AP course.
AP stands for Advanced Placement. Its ostensible role is to teach a college-level course to high school students, thereby allowing them to obtain course credit and graduate earlier. Its real role is simply to make the College Board extra money through testing fees.
The reality is that there are many issues with the AP program.
1. Even the most advanced high school students still do not have the college-level academic skills to handle a college-level course.
2. The high school teacher is not equipped to teach a college-level course to high school students (i.e. teacher to student ratio), and usually lacks the teaching skills to teach a college-level course.
3. A good college will usually require that you retake the course anyway, especially if its for your major.
4. Because of inadequate teaching skills and the student’s inadequate college-level study skills, each AP course takes an incredibly disproportionate amount of time to prepare for. What takes a competent college student one hour to read and understand might take four hours for a high school student to read and understand, for example.
5. Many of the AP programs cram several college semesters worth of material into one year-long course for high school students, resulting in an unfair workload.
Each of these reasons could be discussed at length. But we’ll save this for another article.
Unfortunately, a competitive college applicant must invariably take several of these AP courses during his high school years. It’s not the best thing for high school students, but it’s reality.
There is one AP course, however, that students should avoid completely. Not only does it have problems 1-5, it has a number of very unique problems that make it the worst AP course to take. Furthermore, taking this AP course will damage your GPA, not only because your grade will likely not be an A, but because you will spend so much time studying the subject, it will actually harm your other grades.
Can you guess what this course is? It’s a popular one.
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