I want to go into premed, but have not taken AP Bio or Physics yet

Hi, I’m currently a junior in high school and am looking into majoring in biology (focusing on molecular) in college. This year, my class schedule had 5 weighted classes (AP’s) out of 7 total classes. The science I took this year was AP Environmental Science because AP Bio/Chem are the hardest APs at my school and I knew I would have a lot going on outside of school this year, so I took the easier class.

I’m now stressed because next year I do plan on taking AP Bio and Phsyics together, but I will not be able to submit an SAT Subject test for either since college apps will be due December. I have taken Biology Honors and Chemistry Honors as well as APES during high school.

Can I self study Biology over summer for the SAT Subject test? Will my chances of majoring in biology/premed be extremely hurt because of my decision to take APES this year? What can I do to help my chances? I have a high GPA, good extracurriculars, have done summer premed programs, and hopefully will do well on the SAT when I take it soon.

You do not need to take AP Bio or physics to be premed in college. Of course, having previous exposure to the subject matter will help you get A’s once you in college and you do need A’s to get into med school. You can major in anything and be pre med. you don’t need to be a bio major. As for SAT subject tests, very few schools require them. Do you really need them? Check the admission requirements of the schools you are planning to apply to.

See if you need the subject tests. FWIW, they are meant to cover material from ama high school class in the subject, not an AP, so you should be able to prepare for them without having to master much, if any, new material if you choose to take them.

@oasist Your Bio Honors foundation plus a study book like Barrons or a good HS textbook to fill any gaps in preparation would probably set you up well for the SAT subject test in Bio. There are two formats - molecular and ecological. Take a practice test or two to see which would work better for you. The subject test is not the same as the AP curriculum.

You do not need all AP sciences to do a pre-med track. However, many colleges want to see Bio, Chem, and Physics. I recommend prioritizing physics for your senior year. Taking two AP lab sciences at once is generally not recommended, especially if one is AP Bio as it’s said to be one of the most time-consuming AP courses (lots of memorization). Add college apps on top of that and it is likely to make for a stressful year.

Finally as @gardenstategal has mentioned, comparatively few colleges require or recommend the subject tests anymore. Check to make sure they are necessary at your schools of interest.

Your chances of doing well as a biology major or premed student definitely will not be "extremely hurt " by your decisions around AP classes. The background in biology from an AP class will likely be helpful, but not required. It will not make or break you. In your last year of high school, try to maintain your high gpa, keep doing your extracurriculars, and remember that college applications take a lot of time so don’t overload yourself academically. If you struggle in chem or bio, I would actually take the one that’s harder for you. If you are a pre med student in college, you’ll have to take them both and the preparation you get from an ap will be helpful. Think of it this way: it’s better to get a lower grade in high school than in college, medical school will heavily weigh your college gpa as a part of the admissions process, and your high school gpa will have little to no bearing. I took ap chem, my senior year because chem is really hard for me and knew I would need it in college. I excelled in chem my first year in college, and the first semester was basically a review.

Our GC told a group last week that only about 4 colleges require SAT subject tests these days. She didn’t list which schools, but I would not worry too much about those tests.

Keep in mind that when the college says “recommend” they often mean “require”.

Thank you so much!