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Carnegie Mellon AP/EA Course Reviews

ProvocativePandaProvocativePanda Registered User Posts: 87 Junior Member
edited February 2014 in Summer Programs
I'm planning to apply to Carnegie Mellon's AP/EA summer program for this 2014 summer. I will be a rising senior and am also planning to apply Early Action to CMU through the program in fall. I'm particularly interested in the School of Computer Science or other engineering majors. Does anyone have feedback on the following courses regarding difficulty, workload, or interest?

15-112 Fundamentals of Programming and Computer Science: I have some basic experience with the Python language, but not much beyond that. I plan to take some online courses before summer.

18-100 Intro to Electrical and Computer Engineering: This course seems to have a "reputation" for difficulty but it seems interesting

27-052 Intro to Nanoscience and Technology: Seems interesting

51-260 Design Fundamentals: Sounds very interesting. I have some artistic talent and interest (piano, drawing), and I was wondering how much of a blend this course is with technology and the arts. Description is pretty vague.

33-107 Physics for Engineering Students II [Electricity and Magnetism]: I'm taking a physics honors class in HS that seems to have covered nearly all the mechanical aspects talked about in the Physics I [Mechanical]. Will I be fine in this class with no AP physics taken? I will have finished AP Calculus BC by then.
Post edited by ProvocativePanda on

Replies to: Carnegie Mellon AP/EA Course Reviews

  • kitkat8127kitkat8127 Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    So I did pre college last year and was in the APEA program. 112 is a intro computer science class with a lot of theory and little application. Most kids, especially ones that excel in math/computer science, took 115. The kids who took electrical engineering died. Literally. When most kids were sneaking out of the girls dorms to go the guys, it was for...well...not school-related "activities". When electrical engineering kids snuck out, it was because they had study groups that lasted until 2 am. I'm not trying to scare you away, I have multiple friends who took it and they loved the class and learned a lot, but be willing to put in the work. And it's a lot of work. Also as a side note at least a dozen kids took 115 and electrical engineering at the same time. Apparently there is some useful overlap. Can't help you with design/nano science. Didn't know anyone taking those courses. I took the mechanics version of the physics class you mentioned. I had also taken honors physics. I suggest taking it if you haven't taken AP Physics: Mechanics. You learn a lot more theory and the calculus-based derivations of a lot of formulas. However, if you want to take E/M more power to you. The professor who teaches both physics classes is AWESOME.
  • ProvocativePandaProvocativePanda Registered User Posts: 87 Junior Member
    Thanks for the help! I decided I'm not going to take physics just because I'm taking AP physics C next year anyways and would like to take advantage of this unique opportunity to experience more fields (thus nanoscience and design).
    Also, after looking at the 2013 class list, I couldn't find computer science 115. Its only 110 Principles of Computing (very basic), 112 Fundamentals of Comp Sci (fast paced but assuming little experience) and 122 Imperative computation (requiring 112 or 4-5 on AP comp sci test). So I decided to go with 112. Am I missing something or were your classes different?
  • KnittergirrlKnittergirrl Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    I've applied for AP/EA and now that this years course listings are up I've been trying to figure out what I want to do. I'm 99% sure I'll be doing Interpretation and Argument: Is Technology Overrated? The professor seems to be well-liked and it's a practical class to take (with a relevant subject matter) since it's a requirement for all freshman at CMU.

    I'm undecided on my second class. Since Interp. is in the 1:30-2:50 time bracket, I'd rather not do anything in the noon time since then I would have no time for lunch, so the knocks out a lot of classes. I'm actually really interested in Irish History- the course description makes it sound much more interesting and relevant than I thought it would be. Does anyone have experience with this (rather niche) class? Otherwise, I may do Physics for Future Presidents or Stats, both of which my brother has taken as an undergraduate at CMU.
  • ApdenoatisApdenoatis Registered User Posts: 325 Member
    Does anyone know about how many scholarships are awarded and what the criteria are for those scholarships? My parents won't let me go if I don't get one.
  • KnittergirrlKnittergirrl Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    I know that SAMS (which is completely free except for books and your own personal expenses) is much more competitive to get into than the other programs. I'm not sure the exact statistics, since they don't have them posted, but I've heard that the acceptance rate is very low and that they are definitely looking for diversity and academic success first and foremost. If you are 'overqualified' for SAMS, you can be placed in the AP/EA program.

    Beyond that, there are no scholarships to my knowledge for AP/EA, but I know there are scholarships for the art summer program. Information for that is under the Fees and Requirements tab for the art program. I don't believe there are scholarships for any of the other programs.
  • ApdenoatisApdenoatis Registered User Posts: 325 Member
    @Knittergirrl there seem to be two websites for AP/EA - there's one under the Pre-College Programs page and there's one under the Summer Programs for Diversity: http://admission.enrollment.cmu.edu/pages/apea-overview

    The one under the Diversity webpage indicates that "there are limited scholarships available" for AP/EA, and these scholarships are clearly stated to cover for all the camp tuition. While the Pre-College FAQ page shows approximately an 80% admissions rate, it doesn't seem to indicate how many people get scholarships, so that's why I asked.
  • KnittergirrlKnittergirrl Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    Oh, right. I believe that to receive an AP/EA scholarship, you need to do the SAMS application. Somewhere I even saw that with around 900 applicants, 100 got into SAMS? I have no idea how accurate that is, but I'd seen similar stats, which leads me to believe that the acceptance rate is *significantly* lower. CMU isn't a school to give many scholarships (even financial aid, from what I hear) so I wouldn't be surprised.
  • ApdenoatisApdenoatis Registered User Posts: 325 Member
    I'll just apply anyway and see what happens XD Thanks!
  • planner03planner03 Registered User Posts: 1,358 Senior Member
    Yes, you need to do the Diversity application, not the regular APEA application if you want the scholarship. Do you fall under "diversity"? That pretty much means are you black or Hispanic unless you have some other extremely compelling case of diversity that you are going to present. Are you opposed to the SAMS program? They state that someone will only get the APEA scholarship if they are deemed "overqualified" for SAMS which I would think means at a minimum you have already taken AP Calc BC and have close to perfect SAT scores.
  • ApdenoatisApdenoatis Registered User Posts: 325 Member
    edited March 2014
    @planner03 I'm a girl but both my parents are Taiwanese so I usually list myself as "East Asian" or something. Girls are pretty uncommon for engineering/computer science, though, which are the fields I plan on going into.
    I'm definitely overqualified as all the courses offered at SAMS I've already taken at school. I have a 2320 on the SAT (one sitting) and an 800 on the Math II; my GPA's a little meh but I have straight As second semester (except for math, but my teacher will 200% vouch for me) with AP bio, calc BC, AP Euro, and Robotics honors. I'm around the lower top quarter of my class but I'm from a very competitive school district so it shouldn't be a huge deal (rankings not released.)

    Pretty sure I have a solid chance of making AP/EA. The real question is whether or not I can get any scholarship money for the program.
  • planner03planner03 Registered User Posts: 1,358 Senior Member
    Yes, you are certainly overqualified for SAMS, and of course you would get accepted into the AP/EA, but the diversity scholarship is anyone's guess as they don't publicize any information other than about SAMS.
  • KnittergirrlKnittergirrl Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    I just received my AP/EA acceptance today by email! Just for reference, these are my stats:

    SAT: 1950
    ACT (did not report): 33
    GPA (weighted): ~4.26
    Rank: N/A
    Recommendations: 1 from my current English teacher, 1 from last year's chemistry teacher. I'm sure both were positive.
    Essay: Wrote about love of music, I think it was good.
    I volunteer at the library and I tutor younger kids for pay.
    White female, my brother goes to CMU

    Good luck everyone! Hopefully you can get a scholarship, @Apdenoatis

  • ProvocativePandaProvocativePanda Registered User Posts: 87 Junior Member
    Wow congrats!
    Mine are ACT: 34
    PSAT: 225
    GPA: ~4.36
    Rank: N/A
    I also just took the SAT today. Hoping for a 2300 but at least a 2200+ seems likely. Which tests should I submit? ACT, PSAT, and / or SAT (I would have to wait another month or so)? Also, would applying later affect my chances of getting in? Since its rolling admissions until May, would applying by the end of March be ok?
  • KnittergirrlKnittergirrl Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    I don't think that you're at any risk of not getting in, but I'd apply sooner rather than later just for peace of mind. It doesn't really matter which score you send in, I don't think, so whichever is easiest should be more than fine.
  • ProvocativePandaProvocativePanda Registered User Posts: 87 Junior Member
    Did you guys single or double space your essay, and what did you guys write about? I'm considering writing about my last summer's experience at COSMOS at UC San Diego.
This discussion has been closed.