Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.

Should I bother with AP Biology?

PoliSci79PoliSci79 Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
Hey everyone!

I was rearranging my schedule a tad to try and work in AP Biology, as I'm in Honors Biology now and my teacher thinks I should take AP as a senior. Biology isn't really my favorite class, but I think I'd do fine and I'm looking at applying to Stanford and UC Berkeley (my mom lives in California and I lived there until High School but I currently live in Pennsylvania with my dad) so I was thinking the extra AP might be helpful. Problem is I really wanted to take a Music Theory class (standard, my school doesn't offer it as an AP) and by trying to work in the extra science class I don't think I'll have time.

So my question is if it's worth it for me to take AP Biology? I'm applying as a Political Science and Women/Gender Studies major so it doesn't exactly relate to my major but I want to do everything I can to get in.

Here are my planned classes for 11th and 12th grade if you have suggestions. Thank you!

11th Grade
AP English Language and Composition, AP American Government/Honors American Government B, Honors Algebra II, Honors Chemistry, French III, AP Art History, Introduction to Sociology/AP Psychology, AP Environmental Science, SAT/ACT Prep
12th Grade
AP English Literature and Composition, AP Macroeconomics/Microeconomics, AP Statistics, AP Biology, French IV, Learning Microsoft Office 2010(Tech credit is a graduation requirement), Physics, AP Human Geography


Replies to: Should I bother with AP Biology?

  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 8,573 Senior Member
    edited January 2016
    No to AP Biology. You have enough AP classes. Study what you are interested in. 9 APs? Overkill, IMO. And if you want to have a life too,,you might consider scrapping the ones you aren't really interested in.
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 40,244 Super Moderator
    edited January 2016
    I'm applying as a Political Science and Women/Gender Studies major
    In which case, there is no reason to double up in science, particularly if biology is not your thing; 4 AP classes is rigorous enough IMO.
  • happy1happy1 Forum Champion Parents, Forum Champion Admissions Posts: 23,398 Forum Champion
    Agreed, since you don't want to pursue the sciences, you don't need to take two AP sciences.
  • PoliSci79PoliSci79 Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    Thank you for the advice everyone! I'm going to talk it over with my guidance department as well but I definitely feel less pressure to take AP Bio.
  • mathmommathmom Registered User Posts: 31,462 Senior Member
    I'd take AP Bio over AP Human Geography, but I see you are taking physics senior year, so that's probably unnecessary. Have you got some real history courses in the mix? My kids in NYS were required to take at least three years.
  • PoliSci79PoliSci79 Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    I took World History as a freshmen and am currently taking AP United States History!
  • SlackerMomMDSlackerMomMD Registered User Posts: 3,094 Senior Member
    I agree - scrap AP Biology. I don't see the need or desire. You really don't want to load up on AP's your senior year just for the sake of having AP classes.
  • renaissancedadrenaissancedad Registered User Posts: 1,480 Senior Member
    I agree with most of the above. I would take music theory if that interests you, and I would scrap 1 out of AP Biology, AP Human Geography, and Physics. Take the 2 which interest you the most, as long as you think the workload is manageable.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 30,896 Senior Member
    For poli sci, 3 history, incl AP, beats AP psych and APES. Why APHG instead of AP Euro? Why stats and not calc?

    My crystal ball thinks this discussion may slide into "passions." Other than the raw count of classes called AP, is this load considered rigorous in your hs?
  • PoliSci79PoliSci79 Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    @renaissancedad I'm not really interested in Physics but I know most colleges like to see Bio, Chem, and Physics, which is why I am planning to take it. I'm probably more interested in AP Bio and AP Human Geo in all honesty but I'm concerned how it would look if I didn't take Physics.

    @lookingforward My school sadly does not offer AP Euro, or really any history classes outside of World and U.S, otherwise I would absolutely be taking them as I love history. In fact I was considering taking some at my local community college for personal enjoyment. I'm also taking Stat because my junior year I'm taking Algebra II and as such would not have the knowledge from Pre-Calc to go along with Calc. In regards to rigorous course load, I would say this is very rigorous for my school since the majority of students take solely standard classes, and even those that take honors rarely take more than one or two AP's. I realize this might look like I'm just trying to load up on AP's, but in all honesty I'm taking AP's because they're much more stimulating than honors or standard classes.
  • renaissancedadrenaissancedad Registered User Posts: 1,480 Senior Member
    ^ I got the impression that you were more likely to be interested in AP Bio and Human Geography. I'd talk to your GC about whether physics is really that important given your interests and future direction. Personally, I would think that continuing with AP Bio and doing AP Human Geo would fit in better with your long term direction than taking an intro physics class, but I could be wrong.

    Statistics is very relevant for someone going in to the social sciences - much more relevant than calculus. But I would also check with your GC to make sure that your schedule will cause him to check off the "most rigorous" box when he eventually writes his Common App referral for you next year. If not, find out what you need to do to make that happen.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 30,896 Senior Member
    But OP did mention Stanford and UCB.
    If you're thinking of applying to UC as instate somehow, check the residency and curriculum requirements.
  • SlackerMomMDSlackerMomMD Registered User Posts: 3,094 Senior Member
    I'd take precalc over AP statistics. You may need to take calculus to fulfill core curriculum requirements.
  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 18,405 Senior Member
    Think about the usefulness of the AP credits for any class you are going to take.
  • wisteria100wisteria100 Registered User Posts: 3,952 Senior Member
    Agree with Slacker mom. A lot of top schools really like to see Calc or at least pre calc
This discussion has been closed.