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Quick AP Question

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I think it depends on the subject. For the sciences most people I know take a regular year of them before taking the AP. With language as far as I know it's pretty standard to take AP as the 4th credit, like Latin 1, 2, 3, then AP Latin. Stuff like AP Art History and Psychology I'll just be taking without any prior high school course.

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I also agree that it is on a case by case basis... DD is going to take AP Psychology (or psych through cc) and AP Human Geography, and she hasn't taken a regular version of either (well, she took world cultures which also had geography in 9th). She wouldn't, however, take something like AP physics because she has never taken physics before. On the other hand, she could take AP calc. even though she hasn't taken calculus yet.... So really just a case by case basis. :)



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My older 3 all took a lot of AP tests so I can confirm that the above is correct. Basically, it is just the sciences that need the first year of the subject to be completed before the AP level. Obviously for languages students need a good grasp of the language and one year isn't likely to be enough (mine took it after 4 years of high school).

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It really, really depends on the kid and the class.


If you're enrolling with an outside provider, you should follow their recommendations as they'll often assume prior knowledge.


Some courses don't really have prereqs (like psychology) and those are fine to jump into. Others (like chemistry, physics, biology) would be a lot more challenging to jump into without a high school prerequisite.


I've known people (in PS) who went straight for AP chem, but those tended to be the underchallenged students for whom the pace, even in AP classes, was slow enough that they could easily fill in gaps as they went. For a homeschooled student who isn't tied to the pace of the class I'd rather do at least a quick run through an average chemistry text.

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My daughter took four AP classes during her high school years.

10th grade: AP US History (after a three year sweep of world history in grades 7, 8 and 9)

11th grade: AP Latin (this was her fourth year of Latin studies)


and AP Comparative Government and Politics (no previous Government course)

12th grade: AP Statistics (after taking math through PreCalculus though Algebra 2 was the stated prerequisite)


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