Is it good idea of taking very hard course load?

<p>How college perceive if most kids maintain in top10% by taking very easy course load that includes rarely any AP science/ AB calculus (school offers even liner algebra and beyond) /and loading their course load with soft APs like psychology, AP Government and Politics. Does a student who has taken a very heavy course load that has been beyond linear algebra and differential equations and AP Physics and AP Chemistry and AP European and AP US history and doing well in them. I hope college look for the kids who have pushed the course load for the sake of learning.</p>

<p>All of the more selective colleges place high importance on your challenging yourself with your courseload, in the context of what is offered at your school. If AP/Honors/IB are not offered, they will take that into account. If they are, they want to see you availing yourself of them and will evaluate your GPA more positively than the same GPA at your school with a "gut" courseload.</p>

<p>That said, that does not mean you have to take all 20 or more APs your school may offer. A few jr and sr years will do, imho.</p>



<p>Yes, the more selective colleges do. Now, how you do in those classes ALSO matters, but top colleges are not looking for kids who coast.</p>

<p>Since the prep school do not give weighted averages. My daughter barely qualifies in top 10%. She has taken in 10th AP Physics, AP Euro and AP BC Calculus. This year she is taking AP Chemistry, AP US history, Linear Algebra and differential equation. In 12th she is planning to take AP French, AP Biology and Micro and Macroeconomics and other courses. Her school offers all these APs. Most of the top 10% kids have less APs starting with one or two in 11th grade? Will she be judged on same basis with kids who have taken a much lighter load? Her ECs have same level of committement as rest of the kids.</p>

<p>Does your school formally rank applicants? If not along with the school profile that shows the what is offered at your school and she is taking the most challenging courses and doing well, it should be no problem. The problem will come to play if your school does rank. Then you should push back to ask what determines rank, outside of the straight numerical average.</p>

<p>Her prep school does not rank. Her unweighted current GPA is hovering around 3.9 out of 4.0.</p>

<p>sybbie's comments are accurate: the school profile will show the APs offered, list more advanced ("post-AP") courses offered, and give other details relevant to how hard the curriculum is. That in combination with your D's transcript will show that she took advantage of the most rigorous curriculum available, and (most) colleges will evaluate her in the right context. </p>

<p>Ask your D's guidance office for a copy of the school profile they send out with their transcripts and GC recommendation letter. You may feel better after you read it: I know I did, after I saw the profile from my S's prep school.</p>