Course Load

I am a current senior applying to competitive universities in America. At the moment I am enrolled in AP Econ, Chinese (the level below AP), a dual enrollment kinesiology course, AP Enviornmental Science, Data Analytics (non-AP math-- took AP Stats last year), English (non-AP), AP US Gov, & AP Comp Gov (next semester). I am considering switching Chinese for AP Chem, even though I do not particularly enjoy Chem (I don’t really like Chinese or Chem). I am worried APES, AP US Gov, & Comp Gov are considered “easier” AP courses. Is my courseload rigorous enough without chem? Besides AP Chem, what could I supplement Chinese with? Is it worth it to take 4 years of a language even if I don’t enjoy it (Chinese is always my lowest grade. Last semester was the first time I have ever gotten an A in that class).
Thanks so much!

I think that your corseload is rigorous but it depends on which schools you are applying to. I was in a similar situation with Spanish and I didn’t want to sign up to take it next year, but my school counselor told me that it would look better on my transcript if I took 4 years of it. I would suggest that you replace Chinese with Chem only if Chem is something that you are interested in majoring in. If not, maybe try to find a class that is interesting to you and is related to your potential major or just stick with Chinese for one more year.

What math courses have you taken previously?

If you have not taken precalculus, it is best to take precalculus. If you have taken precalculus but not calculus, it is best to take calculus.

@hsgal83846 I think I may replace it with a dual enrollment (through Syracuse University) computational physics class. I will need to take physics in college and I have never taken a physics class before, so hopefully this will add to my rigor & will teach me the basics of physics before I get to college. What do you think?
A non-AP Chinese course VS a college-level dual enrollment physics course?

@ucbalumnus I took AP Statistics last year. I may not have to take calc in college at all, so I don’t really want to struggle through that unnecessarily. I took precalc sophomore year, and I don’t remember enough of it to feel confident about going into calc this year. Would physics be an ok replacement?
Thank you!!!

While it is generally a good idea to take high school physics before taking physics in college, physics for biology majors in college may require calculus, and physics for physics and engineering majors in college will require calculus.

An admissions reader looking at your application will see that you completed precalculus in 10th grade (2 grade levels ahead) but avoided taking calculus. At the most selective colleges, this may not be the most favorable look.

Keep Chinese.

Another vote for calculus, doesn’t have to be AP.
I’d also recommend physics instead of environmental science or kinesiology.

Colleges want to see a year of bio, chem, and physics. Again it doesn’t need to be AP.

IMO you are better off focusing on your core classes before adding electives.

Rigor is more than just AP courses.

Thank you for your insight. Unfortunately, the only calc classes offered are AP calc AB and BC. I will be majoring in kinesiology in college, so I would really like to stick with the dual enrollment kinesiology. I have honors bio (9th grade), regular chem (10), anatomy and physiology (10), AP Bio (11), biotech (11), foresnsics science (11), and am currently set on AP environmental science and a dual enrollment computational physics class. For math I have alg 2 trig (9th), precalc (10), AP stats (11), and a comp sci math class this year for data analysis.
Will that lower my chances at certain schools?

I do think for highly competitive schools you could be at a disadvantage if you aren’t reaching the highest level of math offered.

That said, what schools are on your list? Kinesiology isn’t offered at that many Uber competitive universities?

What colleges are you aiming for?
Take some form of physics.
Stick with Chinese.
Could you take dual enrollment psychology?

@MYOS1634 I am taking physics now. I think I am dropping chinese. I took dual enrollment psych last year and got an A both semesters!

@momofsenior1 my current reach list includes: wake forest, UVA, emory, and U Mich

Calculus AB will be a more gentle introduction to calculus than calculus in college.

You can try to see what precalculus topics you should review before taking calculus.

At more competitive universities, the study of exercise, physical education, and the like may be a more academic or research oriented field (possibly under a biology department), where calculus is more likely to be required for the major.