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Should I take AP World History or AP Psychology?

Spursfan17Spursfan17 6 replies5 threads New Member
edited February 14 in High School Life
Hello, I am a sophomore planning my course schedule for my junior year, and I am deciding between two AP classes, AP psychology and AP world history. I feel that my interests lie more in psychology, and I would also probably do better in this class because of its easier reputation. However I feel that AP world history would help better my writing and critical thinking skills. What scares me though is that I've heard that even the smart kids at my school earn grades like a B or B-, so I feel that my GPA would suffer more because of that.

I might be overthinking this dilemma, but do you think it would look better to colleges to earn a B+ / A- in an "easier" AP like psychology or a B / B- in a harder class like AP world history?
edited February 14
8 replies
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Replies to: Should I take AP World History or AP Psychology?

  • gardenstategalgardenstategal 6302 replies10 threads Senior Member
    I think of high school as the foundation for your knowledge for life. If you don't pursue a topic in college, your high school exposure will be all you know or the basis for self-learning. For that reason alone, I would pick APWH, a good survey course, over psych, which is more of an elective.

    I would consider the rest of the schedule to make sure you have a good balance in terms of work and rigor.

    You can take psych later or even in college. Colleges understand the relative rigor of these classes, btw.
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  • Groundwork2022Groundwork2022 2814 replies64 threads Senior Member
    APWH is the safer bet for a wider range of selective colleges because it is the more rigorous of the two.
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  • skieuropeskieurope 40498 replies7525 threads Super Moderator
    o you think it would look better to colleges to earn a B+ / A- in an "easier" AP like psychology or a B / B- in a harder class like AP world history?
    It would look better to get an A in the harder class. And every college AO knows the relative rigor of APHW vs AP Psych.

    That said, it's unlikely that any AO will evaluate your schedule in a vacuum without looking at your other courses. But some colleges will request that HS preparation include at least one course of non-US history.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1903 replies31 threads Senior Member
    If you’re looking to choose just one of them, in terms of how it will look on a college application, it would be WH. It’s a core history course, which most colleges expect you to take in HS. Psych is more of an elective.

    Certainly take AP Psych if you are interested, but as an elective. My D will take it as a Senior, but along with AP Gov, after APWH and APUSH.

    As noted, this is certainly dependant on the rest of your schedule. For example, if you’re already taking AP Euro History, the answer would change.
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  • Leigh22Leigh22 804 replies9 threads Member
    I’ll be the oddball out - take the one you’re more interested in. I think this taking classes that you aren’t interested in for fear of messing up college apps is crazy.
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  • momtogirls2momtogirls2 904 replies7 threads Member
    As long as you have the history needed both for high school graduation and college admissions (talk to your guidance counselor) -it is fine to take psychology. However I would not replace a world history with psychology is that means not having enough actual history classes or some type of world history for college admissions. It is a core class so it could make a difference.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1903 replies31 threads Senior Member
    Leigh22 wrote: »
    I think this taking classes that you aren’t interested in for fear of messing up college apps is crazy.

    So I should have let my kids not take English?
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 35238 replies399 threads Senior Member
    edited February 15
    Cores and cores with rigor before electives. Check your college targets' web sites for the list of course areas they want covered. It's not xx classes you think you might be interested in. It starts with the accepted basics. Check that out. Later, you see what space is left for others.

    If you will be applying to college, yes, it's important to give them what they ask for. Some colleges accept whatever. But confirm what *they* say.
    edited February 15
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