AP Classes Not Always Beneficial

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AP classes have been highly-regarded, but the reality of their usefulness for admission is much different.

Aanika Valbh, Editor-in-Chief

Many students believe that taking multiple AP classes will set them up for success in college admissions. But do they really play such an important role on transcripts? 

It is true that taking AP classes benefits students by showing a rigorous schedule and exempting them from certain college classes. However, many universities are changing their policies regarding course exemptions and are only giving credit for AP scores of 4 and above. While these classes exemplify a student’s intellectual capability to take higher-level courses, many rely too heavily on their AP classes being the entrance ticket into prestigious universities. And if students can’t hold a B+ or above in the class, then it could hurt them rather than help them. 

AP classes are also highly associated with burnout and stress. High school is an important time in every person’s life, and it shouldn’t be wasted with constant stress of homework and exams. Students at LMP must find a balance between taking AP classes and having fun because if they’re constantly stressed and frustrated with an AP class, it may lower their chances of succeeding both in the classroom and on the exam. 

The good news is, recently, things have changed with regards to college admissions. With the pandemic preventing many students from taking the SAT/ ACT, advanced courses may be the only way to show rigor on your applications. But students must keep in mind that many universities are prioritizing supplemental essay responses and extracurricular activities as a way to understand the whole student in the new “holistic” approach of admissions. Colleges want a student who is well-rounded and global, not one who drowns themselves in mountains of AP classes.

AP classes are a safe way to intellectually challenge yourself, but students must be wary of how many they take and how much to rely on them for success.