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Advanced Futures: How AP Classes Affect Students’ Future

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AP classes have many elements to them which can easily confuse students new to the process.

TCS offers students an opportunity to take Advanced Placement Classes, (AP classes). They are known for being more rigorous than regular classes, providing both the content and challenge of college courses.

These courses impact students in many ways beyond just the experience of taking them, they also improve student’s future career paths and teach them better study habits. However, these courses also have many negative effects, such as increased stress and less time for other activities.

“It looks very good on your resume, on your applications to university, the fact that you are willing to take a challenge, and you are capable of being successful at a university level before you even get into university,” David Murphy, an AP teacher at TCS, said

This thought goes beyond teachers, as many students also believe that taking AP classes can be crucial to getting into a top university, as many of these institutions look for students who have decided to challenge themselves in high school.

“Every part of your application needs to be good or great to get into the top colleges, and in my situation, considering the colleges I’m applying to, I must have a lot of AP classes,” Camilo Correa, a senior at TCS, said.

These advanced classes also go much deeper into content than other non-AP classes do, allowing students to better understand the material than they would otherwise have.

“The purpose has to do with deepening the abilities, the skills, and the understanding that the students must have in the specific topics of each class. I believe they receive much more in-depth knowledge, [and] much more complex readings, similar to those they could see in a first or second semester of university,” Erika Atehortua, AP Spanish teacher, said.

Despite all these advantages AP classes offer, they also offer a great challenge that many students struggle with, especially as common beliefs about the difficulty of these classes are often wrong.

‘Not everybody is prepared for the rigor that comes with an AP course or not everybody is signing up because they genuinely enjoy the subject itself, so sometimes people get pushed into APs they don’t want to be in!’ Murphy said.”’…​​if you don’t care about the subject, the class is going to be exponentially more difficult,” he later added.

Even for students who struggle with APs, several actions can be taken to improve their standing in those classes and to help them do better. Among them, students can be more selective in what AP classes they choose, and make sure to not fall behind on the content.

“Make sure it’s a subject you are interested in… Keep up with the work, keep up with the rigor, it’s difficult to catch up once you’ve gotten behind. Use all the resources available to you,” Murphy advised.

Overall, while AP classes provide many challenges for the students who take them, they also provide many opportunities for furthering learning, critical thinking, and future opportunities for those who decide to take the challenge.