Advanced Placement

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Dr. Monica Carballo
School Assessment and AP Coordinator

What are AP classes?

Advanced Placement (AP) courses offer high school students the opportunity to engage in academically rigorous coursework. Importantly, excelling in AP exams can translate to the acquisition of college credits and the potential to waive specific general education prerequisites upon matriculation into college.

Coral Reef High School proudly provides a comprehensive selection of 25 AP courses, spanning diverse subject areas such as the arts, English, history, social studies, the sciences, mathematics, and computer science. Additionally, students may explore a variety of world languages and cultural courses, including offerings in French, German, and Spanish.

These courses delve into complex subject matter typically encountered at higher education institutions. AP courses are characterized by their accelerated pacing, requiring a significant commitment to self-directed study and the completion of assignments beyond the standard class schedule. Students enrolling in AP classes should anticipate a more intellectually demanding experience compared to traditional high school coursework.

Key advantages of enrolling in AP courses

  1. College Credit: AP courses offer the chance to earn college credit, and scoring well on the corresponding AP test can help students skip introductory college courses.
  2. Time and Money Savings: AP exams provide an efficient path to bypass lower-level college classes, saving both time and money on tuition. This accelerates progress toward graduate education or a career.
  3. College Admissions Advantage: Excelling in college-level coursework in high school, such as AP classes, stands out to prestigious universities. This strengthens college applications, as top colleges value rigorous coursework.
  4. College Readiness: AP classes prepare students for the rigor of college coursework, helping them adapt to the academic demands, time management, and effective study habits needed for success at the college level.

Are AP Courses “Worth it”?

AP courses provide a unique advantage by allowing students to earn college credit before graduating high school, while also equipping them for success in higher education. A 2015 College Board report found a positive link between success in AP classes and the likelihood of graduating from college within four years. Achieving scores of 3 or higher on AP exams can further enable students to skip introductory college courses, potentially expediting their path to graduation. Success in AP classes is often associated with a strong passion for learning and the ability to tackle challenging academic material, making them a suitable choice for motivated students.

Factors to consider before taking an AP Class

Before you jump into an AP class, let’s talk about what’s important for your success. First, think about what subjects you’re good at. Starting with an AP course in a subject you’re familiar with or have aced in the past is a smart move. Taking on something entirely new can be a bit tough as you’ll be learning from scratch and going at a faster pace. For example, if you’ve aced your science classes, AP Chemistry or AP Biology could be a natural next step.

Next up, check your schedule and course load. Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many challenging classes all at once. It can lead to burnout, hurting your GPA and your overall well-being. Don’t forget to consider your extracurricular activities, honors courses, part-time jobs, and other responsibilities when planning your AP course load.

Lastly, know that AP classes are much tougher than your regular high school courses. Take a good look at each course description to see if you’re ready for the subject matter. Doing poorly in AP courses can hurt your GPA and might not give you the college boost you want, so choose your courses wisely. You’ve got this!

CRHS Late Testing Policy

At times, students may require a make-up AP exam due to exceptional circumstances. If you ever find yourself unable to attend your originally scheduled AP exam, it is imperative that you promptly reach out to the AP coordinator. We will require written documentation of your absence to facilitate the ordering of an alternate exam on your behalf. Please ensure that this step is completed before the final ordering deadline, which typically aligns with the last day of regularly scheduled exams. Please note that late exam ordering will incur a $40 late fee. Failing to adhere to this process may result in a make-up exam not being scheduled for you.