Are Those AP/Honors Classes in High School Worth the Effort?

My freshman year in high school I chose to take Honors Biology, mostly because I had quite a few friends in the same class with me.  What I found out near the end of the first quarter was that even though I received a B in the class, which is average to me, I learned that this is actually considered an A in a regular Biology class.  To me, this was a great deal, because even though my report card read I received a B, I really got the satisfaction of getting a good grade and knowing I made it taking that extra step for taking an honors class.  This was the beginning of my choosing to continue on with taking AP/Honors classes throughout my high school career.

Colleges and Universities Do Notice

My key reasoning for taking Honors and AP classes is that if you’re planning on attending college they do notice the extra effort.  If you’re still unsure if you want to attend and possibly plan on getting a full time job after high school, maybe this isn’t the right choice for you.

However, colleges do take note in the students that challenge themselves and go that extra step to get a better education.

All Good Things Require Effort

The one thing I do want to make clear is that these classes do require extra work.  Not a ton where you’re incapable of finishing it all, but teachers will expect you to take the workload seriously.  This may mean that instead of an essay once every couple weeks you may have a few every couple weeks.  Expect to have reading from a textbook almost every night, and if not anticipate an assignment in the absence of reading.

Let me get one thing straight: These are not easy courses to take if you choose to sign up for Honors or AP classes.  However, it is worth the extra effort.  I learned to discipline myself, because I knew getting behind meant staying behind, and my grades would eventually suffer from it.  I gained respect from many of my teachers for doing well in the class and being prepared to learn each and every day.

Hard Work Pays Off

At the end of my senior year in high school I maintained a 4.4 GPA for that whole year by taking three AP classes along with two other classes.  It was challenging year, but I knew how much I accomplished; it was a great way to end my high school career.

One of the best results was not only my report card, but also getting lettings of recommendations from my teachers.  My AP French teacher and AP English IV teacher were more than happy to write me a letter to send with my college applications.  They were fantastic teachers and their letters showed me how highly they thought of me; universities will appreciate this when deciding whether to accept you.

Just remember: There will be more work to attend to, however, if you plan on attending a university, or even a junior college, after high school it may be worth the effort to take more challenging classes to show you can handle it, and that you want to take that extra step to better your education.

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Kali White

Kali White

Kali White is a junior at the University of California, Davis pursuing a degree in Communications and a minor in Sociology. Her goal is to have a career working for a publication company writing and editing. In her free time she enjoys the outdoors, reading, playing and listening to music, and travelling.