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Is college "harder" than high school?

precociousprecocious Registered User Posts: 1,107 Senior Member
edited September 2006 in College Life
In your own experiences... would you say that balancing a decent courseload per semester in college is more difficult then balancing say, 3-5 AP classes + regular high school courses?

I've heard people go to college and say it was a breeze, simply because they don't have their courses everyday and such and they have more time OUTside of class to work on it because there are fewer subjects - but then again on the other side of the spectrum, I've heard college is indefinitely harder in both material AND amount of work (and we thought high school was tiring?)
Post edited by precocious on

Replies to: Is college "harder" than high school?

  • Drew00Drew00 Registered User Posts: 2,964 Senior Member
    Depends, if you go from a rather competitive high school to a less competitive college (as I did) then chances are you'll feel college is less challenging (as I am)
  • DenzeraDenzera Registered User Posts: 3,371 Senior Member
    I went to a high-pressure public high school, and a high-pressure ivy league college. High school was A LOT more stressful. It was probably a wash in terms of the amount of work, though. The additional freedom of the college schedule let me meet my own needs and set my own priorities without people breathing down my neck. Although less so than primary education, high school can still occasionally be run a little bit like baby-sitting.

    Sure, the material's harder, but you've also seen the easier stuff before, too. In every grade, there's a learning curve, and you get used to having to keep up. Objectively speaking, multivariable calculus is "harder" than euclidean geometry, but you'll probably have a difference of 4 years to grow up mentally between the two, so it's really comparing apples to oranges.
  • HMCHMC Registered User Posts: 242 Junior Member
    From many second-hand accounts, I know the first year of college is definately easier than senior year high school. A girl from my school is attending Yale and claims it's a breeze compared to the stresses of the past few years. It may depend on the high school, though.
  • ChummerChummer Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    College is more long term projects and a few big tests rather than nightly written homework. In that sense it is less stressful, but the projects themselves require a lot of time and work. My math grade was based on two tests and a final.
  • BroadwayBound88BroadwayBound88 Registered User Posts: 162 Junior Member
    My high school wasn't that intense, but I'm finding college easier. The trouble with college is you are your own worst enemy. If you can time manage and get your work done ahead of time it's very chill and easy. If you continally cram for tests and write essays at 5 am when you have class at 9, you're gunna be way stressed. So far I'm getting great grades and still have tons of free time to do whatever I want.
  • astrifeastrife Registered User Posts: 484 Member
    I took 5 AP's my senior year with a regular class too. I'm in my fall semester of my freshman year, and so far I'd say the work load is just about the same for me to maintain good grades. I'm at decent LAC, but not the Ivy League or anything.

    The one thing I'm having trouble with is getting over how subjective professors are in grading papers I write. I can spend 5 hours on a paper and make it exquisitive in my opinion and then write another in only an hour and think it's sloppy. The one done in an hour gets an A, and the one done in 5 gets a B. There seems to be no rhyme or reason except for the mood of the professor.
  • FerstAmmendmentFerstAmmendment . Posts: 969 Member
    I go to Georgia Tech...'nuff said
  • ariesathenaariesathena Registered User Posts: 5,087 Senior Member
    Depends on the college more than anything.

    I went to an excellent high school, but found college more difficult. Consider that most AP classes are equivalent to one semester of college courses. You're moving twice as fast as high school but class only meets every other day. So you move faster, but have about 1/4 the amount of class instruction. This will make a big difference in foreign language courses and math/science courses (where you can't do problems in class), but not so much for English, where class discusssion in high school can degrade into listening to your classmates ramble.
  • UCLAriUCLAri Registered User Posts: 14,740 Senior Member
    I thought my college clases were more intellectually challenging, but I rarely felt the strain of busywork on my schedule.

    Well, language was kinda fussy.
  • AUlostchickAUlostchick Registered User Posts: 1,818 Senior Member
    College is more stressful in the sense that there's more expected of you, but I would NEVER trade it back for high school. The freedom alone is worth the stress and work anytime.
  • soccerguy315soccerguy315 Registered User Posts: 7,244 Senior Member
    as someone else mentioned, obviously you are expected to do higher quality work, but you've had more education to allow you to do that higher quality work.

    Less busy work = good
    Exams that are 30%-50% of your grade = not so fun
  • monarchsfan16monarchsfan16 Registered User Posts: 280 Junior Member
    I think it really depends on you. College is all about you being responsible for yourself. It is up to you to do the work; a lot of it is "optional" (not turned in for a grade, but really only helps you). It is up to you to seek out your professors or classmates for help if you miss a class or if you're struggling with a concept. It is up to you to get the studying and paper writing done in a timely manner. And it's up to you to take care of yourself. If you can handle these things, you'll do fine. It might be a bit harder than high school depending on the school or the major, but the big factor is you.

    I went to a decent public high school. Not top notch, but not the worst in the state either. I took honors and AP classes throughout high school, was a year ahead in math and science because I doubled up on sciences in 8th grade, and had been ahead in math throughout middle school as well. I'm at a very good state university in a major that while not the most challenging is one that this university is known for and ranked for throughout the northeast, so it's not the easiest either (communication sciences and disorders). So far I've had challenging weeks, when there was a lot to do all at once, but I haven't found it much harder than high school. More work? Yes, but the work load is comparable to middle school. I went to one of the best public elementary/middle schools in the state and we worked our tails off there. I'd say the amount of work is comparable to middle school (for me), but it's more spread out because I don't have the same classes every single day
  • EsamisaEsamisa Registered User Posts: 2,181 Senior Member
    I had 6 AP classes senior yr and i think college is more stressful. XP prob bcause of the 100+ page reading assignments my prof gives out though.

    Senior yr was a breeze for me (the latter half anyhow. the first part... uhm college application frenzy, anyone?) except when i had to cram for the AP tests in the end. XP
  • schoenhsschoenhs Registered User Posts: 151 Junior Member
    For me they are about equal. College is more work and reading but then again there's a lot more time in which to do it all. The amount of work we get here is always doable but constant. I'm never are in a situation where I can get everything done, so it's a constant grind. The work is much more interesting than in high school though. I disagree with people when they say college is more about the big projects though. I've found that there is a lot of day to day work.
  • flipchick1127flipchick1127 Registered User Posts: 1,064 Member
    For me, college is definitely more difficult. In high school, I could get high grades even in my AP classes without a whole lot of effort. Here, you have to work your butt of just to get a halfway decent grade.

    That being said, I do like college better than high school. There's so much more freedom and it's so much fun!
This discussion has been closed.