So I’m trying to decide what classes is should take next year. I’m Chinese, and want to get in a top college with A’s or A-'s and 4 or 5’s on the AP exams. Please provide any insight and help me decide on the ‘or’s’
This year (9th Grade) I’m taking:
Honors Alg II (A- , did bad on exam)
Modern World history
Honors Eng II (B+, I have a strict teacher)
Principles of Business/Health
Roughly planned out schedules for next few years:
Honors Eng II
AP US History
Elective: either IB Psychology, AP Environmental Science (I’ll either take these sophomore or junior year to help raise my GPA since it they’re easy A classes), or possible Orchestra all 4 years
AP Eng Language or Honors Eng III
AP Calc AB or BC or AP Statistics
AP U.S. Government & Politics
Elective: one that I didn’t take from 10th grade if not taking Orchestra
AP Eng Language or AP Eng Literature
One of the Maths I didn’t choose in 11th grade
AP Physics 1 or 2 or C
AP World History or AP European History
There’s a French IB program that I want to take but you have to take it for 2 years which is too late since its 12th grade already, unless I take French II online
Elective: Computer Science A, IB Psych, or AP Environmental if I didn’t take it already OR Orchestra if I do it all 4 years
Yes, this is a very rigorous course load, in my opinion - regardless of which “or’s” you choose.
Personally, I would do AP Lang in junior year (as opposed to Honors Eng III) and follow up with AP Lit for senior year - if you’re getting a B+ with a strict teacher, then I think you’d be fine.
I’m pretty biased towards history related classes, so I think that either AP World History or AP Euro would be fine. I enjoyed AP World last year and enjoy AP Euro right now. If you’re more interested in Europe, you may wanna do AP Euro. AP World is (obviously) about the… world, but there will be a lot of emphasis on certain countries and regions - and certain regions of the world will go completely ignored.
Just a warning (this may not actually matter much), I know that for the 2015-2016 school year, there will be a new AP Euro test in a new format, so if you take it junior year, you’d only be the second class to take the new version - meaning that there will be basically no resources for you to judge what is important for the this new version of test. For example, a lot of AP books give “hints” about what tests will/will not ask - so b/c of this new format, these “hints” will no longer apply.
Would you suggest I take one of those history classes as opposed to ap government or choose one of them for senior year only?
First off, I want you to know that getting into a top college isn’t everything. You should find a balance between academics and relaxation you should seek to enjoy high school and take rigorous courses that you can handle. Your happiness should not be sacrificed to get accepted into an Ivy.
You shouldn’t take AP courses just because you think they will look good for admissions, but because you genuinely enjoy the subject matter or the teacher for that course is better than the teacher who teaches the regular classes.
Academics aren’t the only thing colleges are looking for. You should have a few meaningful ECs that you concentrate on, your ECs should correspond with your passions and interests. Colleges aren’t looking for a laundry list of clubs that show breadth but no depth.
Having said that…
What do you want to major in in college?
If you plan on majoring in STEM I would recommend more math and science courses, if you plan on going into English and humanities more english and social science courses would be beneficial.
If you want go into STEM I would recommend…
AP Calc BC in 11th grade then AP Stat as a senior with the possibility of dual enrolling or taking distance learning classes in multivariable calc and/or differential equations and/or linear algebra
Honors English or AP English Lang depending on which class has a better teacher
Whichever history class has a better teacher for 12th grade
I don’t understand your science sequence. How are you going to take AP Chemistry as a sophomore without taking the regular or honors course before? Does your school not have any prerequisites for AP Chem? What are the prerequisites for AP sciences at your school?
I think you should drop orchestra as an elective because as you said on your other thread you don’t want major in music. If your school offers computer science electives or interesting science classes outside of the normal science progression then those could be interesting options. You could also take AP Physics 1 as your elective junior year allowing you to take AP Physics BC a senior. You can even join your schools robotics club and participate extensively in that as one of your major ECs.
If you want to go into the humanities I would recommend that you take…
Whichever math you feel most comfortable with for grades 11 and 12, if you end up taking AP Calc BC and AP Stat you could possibly place out of math requirements in college (unless you go into a math heavy major like business or economics), but taking both is not necessary.
AP English Language and AP English Literature
Whichever history class has a better teacher for 12th grade
Again, drop orchestra and take electives that correlate with your prospective major. Maybe take journalism and work your way up to editor. Participate in your schools journalism club, if they don’t have one, create the club and focus on it as your primary EC.
You have a lot of options for your future, don’t focus so much on top colleges and just work on a few, significant ECs that show who you are and take a rigorous course load that you can handle.
I really have no idea what I want to major in. But most likely law, business, or be a dentist. And for my school, regular chemistry isn’t required to take AP Chem. And what courses give you college credit?
Personally, I think you should keep the AP US Gov’t (for junior year) and choose one of the other history courses for senior year.