Should I take APUSH if I'm not that much of a history buff?

Hi guys, I’m a high school junior and pretty conflicted rn. I’m currently taking US History and I absolutely already hate it, I hate my classmates and I hate my teacher (I’ve only taken one class since the school year just started, idk the content or anything). Should I take APUSH? Is it worth it? Right now the courses I’m taking are:
AP English Language and Composition
Sports Med
AP Chemistry
Wind Ensemble (basically like honors band)
Alg 2 Honors
AP Comp Sci Principles
US History
Spanish 3

I should also preface this by saying I’ve never taken an AP class… HOWEVER I am a pretty decent test taker and I would say I’m good at school. I want to get into med school / a good college so I want colleges to think I can handle the work load. Is taking APUSH a good idea? (Btw the only options for me are APUSH and US History as a junior rn)

Just to clarify - you’re currently in a regular US History class and you really dislike the teacher and other students, so you are wondering if you should switch to AP US History with a different teacher and classmates?

If you are taking APUSH and hate it, you can certainly drop it and find another class if needed. You have a few AP’s including AP English Language and Composition which can show your ability in a humanities subject.

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Try the APUSH. If the teacher is good, and the students in that section want to be there, it will be a better class. Even if you’re not a history buff, if the teacher is great, it will be a great experience for you.


Yes, and I believe I can challenge myself more. I just feel really out of my element in this class, I don’t think it’s a good fit for me.

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Oh so it is the regular history class you hate. You have a pretty busy schedule. Is there another class that interests you and fulfills requirements?

Another social studies class? Maybe, but in my school US History is a grad requirement, so my only options are APUSH and regular US history.

If it is the regular history class that you are unhappy with, by all means take the AP.

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All of my kids took APUSH because of the teachers and because of the students. (I worked at the high school, as well, in a different department.)
The students WANTED to be there. They presented the teachers with thought-provoking questions and were serious about their studies
The teachers were popular on campus. Those classes were entertaining, funny and tough. There was so much demand for those classes that entry had to be recommended by the counselors and based on summer reading and writing requirements.

My eldest had taken a “regular” English class in her freshman year and was shocked at the lack of concern by the other students for the subject and teacher. She immediately asked her counselor for an advanced class. (We thought she would be going to a private school, but didn’t like it, so she missed the summer assignments for the advanced courses at the local public school.)
My daughter had to take an entry test in order to get into the class. Got in and never looked back.

Take APUSH and work hard, you will change your way of studying and working but you will like it.


My daughter was a STEM kid but took all the history and english AP courses because there were better teachers and more motivated students. She loved those courses and her writing got much better as a result (helpful in college in whatever major).

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Thank you! I feel the same way your daughter does. Since I’m in junior year, I really want to get a good score on the SAT and I feel like if I take APUSH I might not have enough time for that. I also want to do some extracurriculars. Do you think its a good idea to still take it?

Check if you can even switch in. They typically don’t allow that at our HS since kids have a lot of AP summer work that needs to be passed in on the first day of school (and counts for part of first term grade).

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For my kids APUSH was a lot of work. But they were interested in the subject matter.

You can always apply test optional :slight_smile: FairTest | The National Center for Fair and Open Testing

Which is more stressful, the harder workload or staying in the class you are in?

One of my kids took APUSH online and regular history is also online. Our school took the credits. She did this because the teacher at our school was subpar.

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So my kids always hated their non honors classes. This year my S24 is taking all honors classes for the other kids and the teachers. If he gets one or two Bs (the horror!) it will be just fine because it means that he had a more engaging and enriching high school experience. If you think APUSH will be a better experience and it can still happen, think about that part of your high school career.

I can’t speak for you but can only speak for my children and former students; they took the tough courses because they wanted to get a taste of college level work. Only you can answer that. Your schedule already looks full. Don’t your AP classmates work together to divide the work? I guess my children’s school encouraged collaboration during their time away from school.

The colleges will look at the rigor of your HS coursework.
Taking AP classes will show rigor.
SAT tests should be held throughout the year. These shouldn’t impact your AP studies unless you can’t balance all of your activities.

APUSH is one of the more challenging AP’s. I would lean toward taking it if you’re looking at undergrad college programs that place importance on academic rigor - especially if you plan to go test optional. Med schools won’t care if you’ve taken it.

First realize you be pre-med at any college…it does not have to be “prestigious”. Your State U will prepare you just fine. You can also major in anything you want as long as you take the pre-med prereqs as well.

I would think about what colleges you may want to attend and what kind of peers would you be competing against.

Also what do you want to major in?

So if you want to go to Princeton and major in humanities, take APUSH.

If you want to go to State U and major in Biomedical Enginering then Honors US History is fine.