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Self Studying APs?

24

Replies to: Self Studying APs?

  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    The reason that I want to have Calculus is because people keep telling me that if I don't, my chances are shot when it comes to getting into Dartmouth/UPenn. I mean, I like math, but let's face the facts here, I'm not a mathematician by any stretch of the imagination. But I try. And I want to show them that by self-studying AP Calculus. But if I fail the exam then that will just be horrible lol.
  • likesMathlikesMath Registered User Posts: 103 Junior Member
    Take PreCalc (junior year) in the summer, if you REALLY need to. Then when you're a senior, take Calculus. That's the only logical advice I can give you.

    Hmm you're only in 10th grade. You have a few years to decide what you really want to do relating to your math. Are you in Geometry? If so, self study that instead of Calculus.
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    Yes, I am so bad at math that I am in Geometry. But it's ok, because I show my strengths. I don't think that everyone has to be math geniuses to get into Penn or Dartmouth, though.

    I can't take pre-calc over the summer and then go into Calc. They won't let me (what a surprise.) So I have to take it in my senior year (pre-calc.) :/

    But you think I'm ok regarding admissions to Penn?
    My extracurriculars include:
    Varsity Soccer, Key Club, United Way (reading tutor), Aquarium junior educator, Junior Varsity Volleyball, Varsity Softball, ASPCA (volunteer), Science Olympiads, Astronomy Club, National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, National Science Honor Society, and shadowing veterinarians.

    Don't have any leadership positions because they're all taken, lol. I am brand new to the school.
  • likesMathlikesMath Registered User Posts: 103 Junior Member
    Yes, I am so bad at math that I am in Geometry. But it's ok, because I show my strengths. I don't think that everyone has to be math geniuses to get into Penn or Dartmouth, though.

    I can't take pre-calc over the summer and then go into Calc. They won't let me (what a surprise.) So I have to take it in my senior year (pre-calc.) :/

    That doesn't necessarily mean you're bad at math...

    You can't do that?! That kinda reminds me of my counselors; no sophomores in AP classes!

    Can you opt to take an online course?
    Maybe you should self-study Algebra II? Algebra II doesn't have alot of new concepts. It's more advanced than Algebra I though.

    I think your ECs are good. You have varsity sports as well, so that's a nice addition. I don't know much about ECs, but that looks like enough for those top colleges you're looking into.

    What you should be "worried" about is ACT and SAT scores. My school curriculum sucks, so getting a 2300+ or 34+ on those tests is not a menial task...
  • PoemePoeme Registered User Posts: 1,329 Senior Member
    You definitely do not have to be a math genius to get into Penn or any of the schools you are mentioning. It obviously helps, but it's not required at all. I know plenty of humanities majors here who absolutely hate math and who desperately try to avoid calculus at all costs. I would recommend trying to take Calc AB though because it's always good to know calculus even if you won't get any college credit for it.
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    Poeme - That's good to hear. Because I was like freaking out, lol. So if I was to go into pre-law at UPenn, you don't think they'd really care if I didn't have Calculus?

    I am trying to get AP Calc, but they can be so stubborn. :/
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    likesMath: I can't take the online classes :/ They restrict me from sooo much lol. I don't feel challenged. I know I could do WAY more. But there aren't any more options for me except self-studying APs for fun. I enjoy that kind of stuff...so it wouldn't be a hassle or anything. I love the humanities so much... I am so excited to take AP Euro next year I can't even begin to tell you guys!!!!!!!!!
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    Bump 10char :)
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    BTW, I'm playing volleyball this year (didn't play it last year) and I absolutely HATE it. Would Dartmouth, Penn, Princeton, etc frown upon me if I decide to do swimming instead next year?
  • SolarcodeSolarcode Registered User Posts: 101 Junior Member
    I think it's a disgrace that they're trying to hold you back from taking advanced classes. Self studying is good for classes that can actually get you credits in college. Many universities don't accept AP's in the subject area of your major.

    Also.. self studying AP Calculus AB is not something your college will see when Darthmouth/UPenn look over your application. You apply to colleges before you take the AP test, so unless you're actually in the AP Calculus class they won't even see it.

    Self studying for AP's is very time consuming and is also very difficult. Self studying for APUSH was a challenge for me (and I love history), so I can only imagine what Calculus would be like. Self studying AP Calculus when math isn't an interest/strength of yours is really pushing it.

    But when they look at your application, despite popular belief when it comes to Ivy Admissions, they don't just say "Oh this student didn't take Calculus" and close the folder.
  • bobtheboybobtheboy Registered User Posts: 2,216 Senior Member
    I recommend taking Calculus AB before your senior year, but that might not be possible. It's true that you don't need to be a math genius, but taking calculus is common. On the other hand, if your app is strong enough in everything else then you can still get in anyway. However, if a lot of kids are in calculus at your school and you aren't that will hurt you. If your school doesn't offer calculus (which would be awful) then that's a different matter.
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    lol, but at Bobtheboy - It's nearly impossible for me to get AP Calculus by senior year. I am not a good math student...at all. lol. And this year is hell for me mathematically because geometry is my weakest point. And regarding the amount of students that take AP Calculus...it's sort of a mix up. We have students who are in Algebra II in 10th grade, and students that are in Geometry Honors in 10th grade, meaning that they won't graduate with AP Calculus, either. From what I've seen, I'd say it's about 50/50. One of my friends, though, is in 11th grade and he's already in AP Calculus, because he took geometry in 8th grade. But all in all, it's 50/50.

    and to the poster above, lol, I found that funny :) ^^ aha " 'Oh this student didn't take Calculus' and close the folder." Hahahaha :P

    I really don't think it will matter ALL That much if I don't have AP Calc if I go into pre-law though...maybe one of you can provide some insight on that?
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    Bump 10char..Bump please! :)
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    10char bump
  • upennvetgirl727upennvetgirl727 Registered User Posts: 509 Member
    @bobtheboy, the school I went to last year didn't offer calculus haha. Or any APs. 4 honors courses were provided, they had no clubs or anything that I could join, and they didn't want you to start any, either. There were eight 9th graders, and we all went to the same classes at the same time. This other girl and I were the only students in honors classes, and we had to sit in regular classes and for homework we got a couple of extra problems...*sometimes*. Oh yeah, that's right.

    It was pathetic.

    AND, they hated me for being Catholic. They tried to save me SO many times and told me that I was going to go to hell if I didn't convert to Calvinism. The other kids were kind of slow, too. There were no other schools available to me though, so I had no choice. I mean, I could have gone to my zoned school. But it is a D school and they're about to close it down or turn it into a charter school. Besides, I already had my share of public schools. I could never imagine going through that again.

    So all in all, last year was hell. No pun intended, lol. That's why my grades suffered.
This discussion has been closed.