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Should I take a standard elective over an Ap elective if I’m more interested in it?

tvnsc19tvnsc19 1 replies1 threads New Member
Hi, I’m currently a freshman and in our high school we have to plan our courses for next year. So far, I’m planning to take

Accelerated pre calculus (weight of an AP)
Ap chemistry
Ap us history
Honors English
Honors Spanish 3
Health (1 semester) (required)
Gym (1 semester) (required)

And now here comes the problem. I have room for one more elective. I really want to take photojournalism but it’s a standard class. The other option is AP computer science A and of course since it’s an AP it’ll raise my GPA but I’m much more interested in photojournalism. What class should I take? And will taking photojournalism lower my chances of getting into a top 10 school?

Note: my courses for this year (freshman year) are as follows:
Honors algebra 2 and trig
Honors chemistry
Ap world history
Honors English
Honors Spanish 2
Gym (2 semesters) (required)
Photography 1. ( 1 semester) (regular class)


7 replies
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Replies to: Should I take a standard elective over an Ap elective if I’m more interested in it?

  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 42157 replies453 threads Senior Member
    Take photojournalism. You're taking all core classes (math, English, history, science, foreign language) at the highest level offered and frankly our schedule looks like a Junior's. So no college will begrudge you a class in photojournalism that you're interested in.
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  • XtremeBlaze777XtremeBlaze777 41 replies10 threads Junior Member
    There is no reason for you to take AP CS A (actually programming is a pretty cool skill to have, defo recommend taking the course at some point). Photojournalism will actually make you much more appealing to t10. You are already taking photography, so this shows a commitment to a passion (ivy leagues love this). If you take something related to photography/film all four years of high school (and maybe write a college essay about it) then you will be so much more appealing than an AP machine. You don't even have to major in anything related to it, you seem to prefer STEM and most STEM people tend to rarely take humanities electives, so this will make you an even more unique applicant.
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  • Techno13Techno13 306 replies11 threads Member
    Photojournalism for sure! Your schedule is already rigorous. Photo makes you more interesting and probably more satisfied.
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  • melvin123melvin123 1581 replies21 threads Senior Member
    Are you in TX or some other state where you have to be in the top X% of your class in order to be auto-admit into the state flagship? If yes, is the ranking really so close that you need the weight of the other class? If no to either, then definitely choose photojournalism. Be authentic to yourself and what you find interesting.
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  • tvnsc19tvnsc19 1 replies1 threads New Member
    Thank you all for your comments! This has helped me greatly in my decision.
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  • happy1happy1 23062 replies2279 threads Senior Member
    If you are aiming for top colleges talk to your guidance counselor and be sure your schedule with photojournalism instead of another AP would qualify for the "most rigorous" designation. I imagine it will but it doesn't hurt to check.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1308 replies19 threads Senior Member
    This is one of the reasons our HS implemented weighting caps per year. Taking more than X honors/AP/etc. adds nothing to your weighted GPA. While it needs some tweaking, I think it’s a good idea.
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