What is Advanced Placement, And What Are the Benefits?

If you have a student that is getting ready to leave middle school and go into high school, it is very likely that you or your child have heard the phrase ‘AP.’ What is AP, and what’s the fuss? Is it sometimes worth doing during high school?

Advanced Placement—The Basics

AP stands for advanced placement and is offered at many high schools that follow an American curriculum. AP, advanced placement, ranges over multiple subjects, including English, Maths, Science, History, Art, and Foreign Languages. These classes are only offered starting in high school and typically have a more rigorous curriculum than their counterpart class. AP classes typically end in an AP exam, where students showcase their knowledge learned over the year. If students pass these tests, the AP class can sometimes count as credit towards university courses.

Is Any Student Eligible for AP?

Different schools will approach AP classes in different ways, so it is best to check with the international school of your choice. Some schools require a certain grade from the year before to ensure the student will be able to complete the level of work. Some students must ask written permission from their previous teachers. Some schools require all students to take at least one course of AP during their high school years. Be sure to check with potential schools so you are clear on the guidelines for you and your child.

Why Are the Benefits of Taking an Advanced Placement Course?

There are many wonderful benefits to completing an AP course. A few particularly important ones to note are:

  1. It will help students challenge themselves and raise their level of understanding.
  2. It will go towards college credit if a student passes an AP exam.
  3. Many universities prefer to see students attempt AP classes, even if they do not pass the exam.
  4. It helps prepare students for the rigor of a university.

An AP course is a great thing for any student to try at least once.

Encourage students to choose disciplines where they feel confident so that they can further challenge themselves. Students that are particularly strong in Science may choose to pursue more Science-based classes over an English AP course. This can help reinforce concepts and push students to achieve their highest potential. An AP course is a great way to help improve chances for a good university and can help students prepare for the rigor of higher education courses.

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