D+ Grade in AP Physics 1

Hi! I’m fairly new to College Confidential. During first semester of my Junior year I received a D Grade, and I was disappointed, because I knew I had potential, however my grades for my other classes, during that first semester were 5 A’s except for 2 B’s. That all changed with the start of second semester, I studied everyday for my physics tests and in the end all of it payed off. For the first time for my high school career, I received straight A’s for my second semester. I took 4 Honor Courses and one AP class for that year. Then I took the exam for AP Physics 1, and passed with a 4. Now, this brings me to my question: Will colleges (specifically UC’s) look down on me because of my one D in AP Physics? Which is essentially my only D on my transcript. Or will they see disregard it? If you’ve read until the end, thank you so much. Please reply :slight_smile:

A D+ grade in junior year is definitely something admissions will take notice of, and although it may not single handedly hand you a rejection, it is something the Admissions Office will take note of. Can’t speak for every school, but seeing this in as late as junior year will raise eyebrows for many. Hopefully you had other aspects of your application to balance this out, or you addressed this in your essays specifically.

Although you did improve your grade from one semester to the next, it isn’t the best look to UCs as Ds and Fs count as failing grades and are not used for GPA recalculation: GPA Calculator for the University of California – RogerHub

It’s difficult to say for sure, but it’s best to keep a good holistic outlook on the application process :). Looking ahead, I wish you all the best luck in your school decisions!

What was your final grade for the course? Was it a four quarter system or two semesters? If you ended up with a good grade overall (despite starting with a D+) that would be a better look.

The D will impact your GPA if the 1st semester is not repeated and this grade is on your HS transcript. You also do not get credit for that 1st semester so you will only have 1 semester credit for Physics completed for your a-g course requirements unless your school is on a yearly grade system vs. semester system. UC’s require 2 years of a laboratory science but 3 or more makes you more competitive.

Bottom line, the UC’s are competitive and have many qualified applicants with not enough spots so depending upon major, intended campus targets and how competitive the rest of your application will be, no one can really say how the D will impact your chances.

Best of luck and great that you were able to turn things around.

Yes. Should I specify in my essay about how Coronavirus played a part in that letter grade, as well as it being my first AP course I didn’t know what to expect really, and everything being suddenly online which was something I wasn’t used to? But then I overcame that obstacle and adjusted pretty well in second semester. Also for more information, I have a Youtube channel with 10k + subscribers, I’m in Student Council, I’m in Black Student Union, I have a job, and currently have a 3.6 UW, and a 3.8 W, an ACT score of 26, and an SAT of 1320.

Yes. Should I specify in my essay about how Coronavirus played a part in that letter grade, as well as it being my first AP course I didn’t know what to expect really, and everything being suddenly online which was something I wasn’t used to? But then I overcame that obstacle and adjusted pretty well in second semester. Also for more information, I have a Youtube channel with 10k + subscribers, I’m in Student Council, I’m in Black Student Union, I have a job, and currently have a 3.6 UW, and a 3.8 W, an ACT score of 26, and an SAT of 1320.

Hi, yes, it was all in two semesters. So First semester it was a D+, then in second semester ended up with an A and a 4 on the AP exam. Also for more information, I have a Youtube channel with 10k + subscribers, I’m in Student Council, I’m in Black Student Union, I have a job, and currently have a 3.6 UW, and a 3.8 W, an ACT score of 26, and an SAT of 1320. Should I specify in my essay about how Coronavirus played a part in that letter grade, as well as it being my first AP course I didn’t know what to expect really, and everything being suddenly online which was something I wasn’t used to? But then I overcame that obstacle and adjusted pretty well in second semester.

I would not make excuses especially since all students are dealing with Covid and on-line schooling issues. The UC’s will be able to see you turned things around and did well 2nd semester.

What you need to be concerned about is meeting the a-g course requirements for the Laboratory Science section since you only get 1/2 year credit. Also no decision has been made if the UC’s will remain test blind for the next admission cycle or test optional so you should consider still prepping to retake if possible. Test optional with higher scores will make you more competitive.

Hi, wouldn’t the AP exam score cover the requirement?
https://admission.universityofcalifornia.edu/admission-requirements/freshman-requirements/subject-requirement-a-g.html
In this link it shows in the “D” requirement AP exams can satisfy “D”

Ouch. Should I still send in my score to them? I got a 4 :confused:

You’re fine. I will probably end up sending it. Also for my extracurriculars/hobbies I have a Youtube channel with 10k + subscribers, I’m in Student Council as a Treasurer for 3 years, I’m in Black Student Union, I have a job, and on the academics side of things, I currently have a 3.6 UW, and a 3.8 W, an ACT score of 26, and an SAT of 1320. Should I specify in my essay about how Coronavirus played a part in that letter grade, as well as it being my first AP course I didn’t know what to expect really, and everything being suddenly online which was something I wasn’t used to? But then I overcame that obstacle and adjusted pretty well in second semester.

You are correct that passing the AP exam will meet the D requirement for Physics. If the UC’s remain test blind, GPA will be a major factor in their application review and the D will be calculated into your 3 UC GPA’s if you do not retake.

Like I stated in my other post, do not make excuses for the D. You were able to regroup and do well 2nd semester. You could use this experience in one of your personal insight essays however.

I’m confused on timing discussed in post. If you took the AP exam this all happened last year - so first semester wasn’t impacted by Covid. Glad you turned the class around, but I’d definitely not talk about Covid related to Fall 2019.

Ok, thank you for the clarification, I understand. You’re right, I shouldn’t make excuses if it’s evident that I have got a better grade. Thank you so much for your time, I greatly appreciate it! :slight_smile:

You were a junior taking physics a month ago when you asked the same question. Closing thread for deceptive posting.