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mirabillis

Whose seniors are not/will not take AP exams?

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I think it will be an easier year without:

a) having to worry about the new CB registration that is this month for 5 exams!
b) having to go through major prep in april/may
c) shell out nearly $500 for the privilege

Does it matter? Credit-wise, he may have gotten some college credit, not sure.
Probably not AP Eng Lit (as he already has AP Eng Lang)
Probably not AP Calc BC (as he already has AP Calc AB)
That leaves AP World, AP Physics C & AP Psychology - not sure it really matters that much.

Thoughts? Opinions?

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My now college freshman took one AP class senior year and zero exams.

She planned on retaking the AP class as a college class because it was in her major. She successfully used a placement test in lieu of an AP for foreign language placement to get the same level of class.

We don't have access to AP tests where we live so it was easier that way anyway. She was not looking for selective college admissions.

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My ds who is now a physics grad student is the only one of my kids to take any AP exams ( he took chem and cal BC.)  My current sr is going to take micro and macro CLEPs this yr, but that is about it.

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No AP tests but my dd does full time dual enrollment.  

 

ETA - my older sons took several AP exams in high school.  Some were valuable, others were not.  

Edited by Kassia

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Dd did one AP test in her 10th grade year, but won't have any others. She's been doing DE part time 11th grade and full time 12th grade, though.

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I would only take the AP exam for classes you are hoping to get credit for. My dd May take one exam. Or not. We haven’t decided yet, but either way, it will be a lot less pressure than usual.

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Also, side note-  I know many on this board puffy heart love AP Psych, but I thought it was a ridiculous amount of pointless busywork for such a straightforward, honestly easy, class. Just CLEP seems to me is the better way to go if we had to do it over. On a positive note it convinced dd she in no way wanted anything to do with psychology so maybe that was worth it for that, LOL. 

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We went to an Open House at a CC for high school kids for Dual Enrollment.  They had a panel of current high schooler both public/private and homeschoolers.  The students were asked which did you like-- AP classes or Dual Enrollment.  All the kids liked doing Dual Enrollment because they did not spend so much class time on AP test prep.

My ds is not interested in any AP because for him - it just class to study for a test.  He is more interested in taking a class to learn something new.  So, we are doing both online and a irl University for dual enrollment.

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Just a note that most colleges will give credit for calc 1 for AB and for both calc 1 and 2 for BC....so if he's going to need both those credits in college, taking the BC exam might be a good idea, depending on future plans.

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Probably, though I’m not happy about early registration. The schools we are looking at give credit. I am questioning at least one for which taking credit might not be desirable in the proposed major.

Aside from the question of whether an AP course is even worthwhile in itself, I do think that the exam prep has some positives. It provides motivation to throughly review the material. It’s not so unlike studying for college finals, even with the AP format. I do question how motivated seniors will be to study for very many of them, though. 

There is a short list of AP exams I would never have my kids bother with. 

Edited by Penelope
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For us, the function of taking AP classes has been great - truly rigorous classes, no complaints here. And taking the AP exams 9th-11th grade has been invaluable for test prep, etc. My ds already has 11 APs under his belt and has already earned National AP Scholar... so we're just thinking if it won't matter with regards to college admissions (he is looking at selective schools), might be easier to skip the exams, but take the classes....

Edited by mirabillis
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20 minutes ago, mirabillis said:

For us, the function of taking AP classes has been great - truly rigorous classes, so complaints here. And taking the AP exams 9th-11th grade has been invaluable for test prep, etc. My ds already had 11 APs under his belt and has already earned National AP Scholar... so we're just thinking if it won't matter with regards to college admissions (he is looking at selective schools), might be easier to skip the exams, but take the classes....

 

UCs are generous with AP credit. If he takes Calculus BC exam, he might be able to start in Calculus 3 as a freshman instead of having to repeat Calculus 2. 

This is also probably the case with AP Lit. 

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DS is taking AP Calc, but not sure about the exam.  He's leaning towards dropping AP Calc and taking dual enrollment calc 1 spring semester.   It's free and a for sure credit completed.

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Mine- she is a junior this year but won't take them at all.

1.  That level of stress doesn't seem necessary

2.  If she wanted to make her transcript look better she would DE

3.  She is going for Graphic Design and her focus should be on her art, and her portfolio as much as academics

4.  AP doesn't usually give you college credit, or save you money nowadays and DE is a more enriching experience as far as social, interactive, learning how college works (adds, drops, withdrawals, office hours) so I think personally I will definitely encourage my IRL friends to lean towards DE not AP.

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Neither of my kids have taken any APs. My DD got into a highly selective college without; she had 30- dual enrollment credits from a 4 year uni instead. Having credit rest solely on the performance on a  single high stakes exam was a kind of stress she absolutely didn't need.

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On 9/13/2019 at 9:58 AM, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Also, side note-  I know many on this board puffy heart love AP Psych, but I thought it was a ridiculous amount of pointless busywork for such a straightforward, honestly easy, class. Just CLEP seems to me is the better way to go if we had to do it over. On a positive note it convinced dd she in no way wanted anything to do with psychology so maybe that was worth it for that, LOL. 

OMG, YES!!!

Dd took PSYCH 2301 at our local CC last fall while a friend of hers was taking AP Psych at a local high school. The work load for that AP class was crazy, but it was also a lot of busy work. In her CC class, Dd had to write chapter summaries, takes tests and write an 8 page paper applying what she'd learned by analyzing some aspect of Hillbilly Elegy. Meanwhile her friend was doing all sorts of daily homework assignments and small projects that didn't involve much in the way of critical thinking or writing skills. They spent so much time practicing for the test instead of really learning psychology and it took a whole year to do it. Meanwhile, dd moved on to Interpersonal Communication which in addition to being a core requirement turned out to be a really interesting class. That experience made me much less likely to encourage dd to do more than the one AP that her diploma program requires. So she'll take AP Euro this year (her junior year) and call it quits. 

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My DD took Psych as her first DE class and enjoyed it. At the college she enrolled in, it got her credit for a necessary gen ed. She didn't have a huge amount of homework - 4 journaling papers (3 pages on one of various topics assigned, written in 1st person) and one big research paper at the end plus 5 or so tests including the final.

If the college accepts CLEPs, I'm tempted to be a big fan. But, they aren't something my eldest studied for on her own so I can't speak from experience. I'm hopeful Child#2 will be more open to the experience.

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5 hours ago, chiguirre said:

OMG, YES!!!

Dd took PSYCH 2301 at our local CC last fall while a friend of hers was taking AP Psych at a local high school. The work load for that AP class was crazy, but it was also a lot of busy work. In her CC class, Dd had to write chapter summaries, takes tests and write an 8 page paper applying what she'd learned by analyzing some aspect of Hillbilly Elegy. Meanwhile her friend was doing all sorts of daily homework assignments and small projects that didn't involve much in the way of critical thinking or writing skills. They spent so much time practicing for the test instead of really learning psychology and it took a whole year to do it. Meanwhile, dd moved on to Interpersonal Communication which in addition to being a core requirement turned out to be a really interesting class. That experience made me much less likely to encourage dd to do more than the one AP that her diploma program requires. So she'll take AP Euro this year (her junior year) and call it quits. 

 

This is what I mean about DE being a much more valuable personal and interpersonal learning experience.  THough you will have 50% of DE classes being rather too "easy" and not super engaging, the other 50% really grow your kid as a person- and they have at least the chance of interacting with a prof or adjunct who really enjoys the material, as well as other students- adults and teens both- who are interesting and engaging people.  

AP is a total information dump, test-factory situation.  That, in and of itself, is a learning experience, of course.  But I really encourage people, now that we have done so much of both, to do DE if they're on the fence.  

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AP doesn't usually give you college credit, or save you money nowadays and DE is a more enriching experience as far as social, interactive, learning how college works (adds, drops, withdrawals, office hours) so I think personally I will definitely encourage my IRL friends to lean towards DE not AP.

This is interesting as I advise my friends to go the AP route instead of DE. For us AP is cheaper even with CC rates. And my dc are in absolutely no hurry to be in the "enriching" environment our local CC offers (ugh). We've found that AP exam prep is far more rigorous and a better use of their time than suffering through the classes our CC offers. I have one dd who wants to take AP exams for the experience - she thrives on all of that and really loves the test itself, especially the essay - so I told her go for it. So far she's accumulated credit for 3 college classes so there is an added bonus.

We don't have access to AP classes in our area so my dd self-studies which I just love. It's way fun helping her put together course material and 14yo her sister joins in as much as possible.

 

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2 hours ago, Calming Tea said:

 

This is what I mean about DE being a much more valuable personal and interpersonal learning experience.  THough you will have 50% of DE classes being rather too "easy" and not super engaging, the other 50% really grow your kid as a person- and they have at least the chance of interacting with a prof or adjunct who really enjoys the material, as well as other students- adults and teens both- who are interesting and engaging people.  

AP is a total information dump, test-factory situation.  That, in and of itself, is a learning experience, of course.  But I really encourage people, now that we have done so much of both, to do DE if they're on the fence.  

 

My kids have done DE and AP and have had both of the learning experiences you described for each.  Some DE and AP classes were wonderful with inspiring instructors, and some DE and AP classes were not taught well at all.  I think a lot depends on who is teaching the class.  Overall, I'd say DE has been the better experience, though.  

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1 hour ago, Kassia said:

 

My kids have done DE and AP and have had both of the learning experiences you described for each.  Some DE and AP classes were wonderful with inspiring instructors, and some DE and AP classes were not taught well at all.  I think a lot depends on who is teaching the class.  Overall, I'd say DE has been the better experience, though.  

 

Most of us (the vast majority) don't have local AP classes as an option, so that factors in.  The vast majority of homeschoolers taking AP are doing them online.  But even in person, I'm glad to know how you feel.  We do have one private Christian homeschool academy that offers a LOT of AP classes.  It's not close enough to me, to have been an option for either of my kids, but I am friends with people who will be considering it in the years to come.  ....I probably would still encourage them toward DE unless it was being in the Christian academic environment that they'd be looking for.

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7 hours ago, Calming Tea said:

 

Most of us (the vast majority) don't have local AP classes as an option, so that factors in.  The vast majority of homeschoolers taking AP are doing them online.  But even in person, I'm glad to know how you feel.  We do have one private Christian homeschool academy that offers a LOT of AP classes.  It's not close enough to me, to have been an option for either of my kids, but I am friends with people who will be considering it in the years to come.  ....I probably would still encourage them toward DE unless it was being in the Christian academic environment that they'd be looking for.

 

Good point...my kids who have done AP were in ps so the classes weren't online.  

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