Psychology or AP chem

Hello everyone my son is a senior in high school and we need to pick between Psychology or AP chem since the schools schedule does not allow both. He is gearing up for med school in the future. Any suggestions are appreciated! Thank you!

Either chem likely better if he’s comfortable. Pre med is typically advising, not a major and the choice won’t likely impact his college acceptances.

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General chemistry generally is a weedout course so in order to give himself the best chances he should take AP Chem.


Another vote for AP Chem.


All things being equal, chem. It’s considered much more rigorous than psych, and it will help prepare him to do well in the toughest premed classes.

If you were aware that the psych teacher was a superstar and the chem teacher was horrible, that differential could trump the generic advice. But as long as the class will be a decent experience, go with chem. A lot of students don’t do great on the chem AP test unless the instructor is top-notch or they do a lot of extra prep, but that won’t really matter, as college admissions will be done long before he gets his score, and placing out of chem as a premed probably isn’t desirable anyway. The goal is just to lay a good foundation, and show a rigorous senior schedule for college apps.


Chem → Psych unless you tell us he’s also taking AP Bio and AP Physics C. :grin:


If your son applying BSMD, and SAT Chemistry test hasn’t been taken, and you are planning to report SAT scores to the BSMD colleges then, obviously AP Chemistry is the pick in this scenario.
If your son isn’t applying BSMD, but just applying undergrad (BS) premed then also IMO taking AP Chemistry is a wise choice. In general AP Chemistry is more rigorous than AP Psychology. Relatively it’s easy to score 5 in AP Psychology than in AP Chemistry. Good luck.

Another vote for chemistry.

Chem is core competency for pre-meds.

Chem. Weed out course.

Another vote for Chem. Many of his college classmates will be taking Chem “101” with AP Chem under their belts. He’ll be better prepared for success if he’s not seeing this material for the first time.

Adding my vote for Chem in case you haven’t seen the trend. :wink:

With Chem being a tough weed out course in college, having the best foundation going in is extremely helpful.

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He should take the class that has the best teacher. If the AP Chem teacher is good, definitely take that. Psych is easier, would be easy to take in college without having had AP Psych; in fact, most schools will let Psych majors place out of Psych 101 if they’ve scored well on AP Psych. Gen Chem is tough (Organic is even tougher), so it would definitely be helpful to have had AP Chem before college. But if the AP Chem teacher is horrible, and the AP Psych teacher is wonderful, he should take the AP Psych class.


He did take SAT chem in junior year and did score well on it. Are the schools still accepting subject SATs? We will be sending the scores anyways and he is planning to continue psych since the class is very interesting and will work on AP chem on his own

Yes, there are schools still accepting subject test SAT scores. A majority of the school are allowing test optional and some like UCs are test blind policy. Check individual college admission website for their policy for this application cycle.

Thank you, I had attended rutgers info session for the 7 years bs/md and it mentioned if the student has any subject SATs it’s an advantage!

AP Chemistry

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