Are AP classes worth the hype?

By Nathan Blaydes, Staff Writer — Everyone has listened to friends complain about their homework in an Advanced Placement class. Many students struggle with whether they should take an AP class or not because of the extra workload on top of everything else they are involved in.

Many students who take AP classes are extremely stressed because they are involved in various other activities. The workload of the AP class and the extra involvement in extra activities outside of school can cause much unneeded stress. If a student plans to take an AP class they need to be prepared for the extra work, such as tests and extra homework for every AP class they are in.

Senior Stephanie Villella has taken a number of AP classes throughout high school such as AP Government, AP World History, AP United States History and many more.

“I took a number of AP classes and they helped me in understand how a college class are due to the amount of work put into them. However, they harmed me in a way because the amount of work put into them caused me to struggle with time management and getting work done for my other classes,” Villella said.

Many studies done by Universities show that the more rigorous classes the more stressed a student will become.

“Another source of school-related stress occurs in high school where more students are taking more rigorous classes, such as Advanced Placement (AP) classes offered by the College Board. In the past 25 years, there has been explosive growth in the number of students who take AP classes, with one-quarter of all high-school graduates having taken at least one in 2004,” Stanford School of Medicine staff said.

Many students believe if they get a bad grade in an AP class it will still look better than getting an average grade in a regular class, which is a grossly untrue misconception. AP classes only look good on your transcript if you get and A or B, because if you are getting a C in the AP class you most likely should not be in that class.

“When I first signed up for an AP class I thought that any grade I got would look better than if I got a average grade in an regular class. I found out that I had to work extra hard in my AP classes to get an A opposed to getting an A in a regular class. If I could start over from sophomore year I would still take AP classes because they have prepared me for the rigorous classes i will encounter in college,” Senior Katie Marlin said.

AP classes aren’t for everyone. They offer the same amount of homework as a normal college class. You should only take an AP class if you are willing to put in the extra hours of work to receive an A or B in the class. On average, if you plan on taking an AP class expect to do at least an hour of homework a night. Many students who take three or four AP classes do not realize that is at least 4 hours of homework a night. If you do not feel like you can handle the rigorous workload, AP classes are not for you.

[Updated Aug. 10, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]