Are AP Classes Worth Taking?

Julia Strasius, News/Design Editor

Advanced Placement classes offer students the ability to challenge themselves and better prepare for college-level work in high school. These classes benefit students in a multitude of ways. 

#1: You will be challenged

Compared to honors or regular classes, AP classes typically present students with a more rigorous schedule. They also tend to have more detailed curriculums, challenging students with the workload. Having these classes on your transcript impresses admissions officers, and proves that one is a capable student while showcasing one’s academic strengths. For example, if one’s strongest subject is science and receives a score of a five on the AP Environmental Science exam, that score can provide colleges with a concrete demonstration of one’s skills in that select area.

#2: Time Management Skills, Exploring Interests

With the workload that AP classes provide, students learn the importance of time management. Since the AP exam takes place at the very end of the school year, students focus on retaining and practicing the course information throughout those months, helping them improve their study skills. Making study schedules when taking these classes is a helpful resource to keep you on track. AP classes also give students an opportunity to explore their interests. Palmetto offers a variety of specialized AP classes that one can look into. For example, AP Computer Science, AP Psychology, AP Human Geography and AP Art History all give students a look into new, specialized subjects that they may want to pursue later in life. Not only are they interesting, but the teachers alone make these classes worthwhile. 

#3: College Credits

Students also elect to take AP classes for the college credits they provide. One can receive credit for an AP class if they score a three or higher on the end of year AP exam. Depending on the college, having a significant amount of these credits may allow a student to graduate early, saving them both time and money. Looking at CollegeBoard’s AP Credit Policy Search allows an individual to see what credits their desired college takes, as well as how many credits the university offers for a specific class.

Colleges want to see students take advantage of the more rigorous classes available to them, but they also want to see that you know your limits. Overloading on AP classes can become overwhelming, and may not be a good option for everyone. Talking to your guidance counselor can help one create a challenging, yet manageable schedule. 

Overall, AP classes provide students with the opportunity to explore new interests, improve their study skills and save time and money on college through credits.