AP News Report

Mel Hanby, Reporter

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For most of us, college seemed a million years away in our freshman and sophomore years, despite everything our TEAM teachers told us about being prepared. During junior year, it becomes clear that getting from high school into a university or college entails a lot more than a point A to point B, high school graduation to college enrollment process. There are certain steps you can take that will help you to get into schools of your choice. ASVAB, PSAT, SAT, ACT, and other tests with catchy acronyms can aid in placement, scholarship credibility, and choosing a career path after high school. One of these series of tests are called Advanced Placement (AP) tests. An AP test is a test for college credit any student can take, even if they haven’t taken the AP class offered for the test. JCHS offers AP classes such as Calculus, Statistics, Government, and Literature, to name a few. Students who are college bound usually start to take these tests their junior year. But why put themselves through the trouble when they could take these classes in college?

For most students, it’s about saving money. AP tests are scored on a 1-5 scale, and 3 is passing. The higher score achieved means the less classes you have to pay for in college, which also means more money saved. While there is a fee of $90 to take an AP test, it can save hundreds of dollars later, and if money is an issue, the fee can easily be waived by the school. Don’t let money stop you. If you want it, you can get it.

That being said, the tests are still college level, and are a huge commitment for any student. Here’s what some juniors had to say about their first time AP test experience:

 

Emma Motes, Calc and US History

How are you preparing?

“I’m preparing by doing study guides for calc and watching chapter review videos for AP [US history].”

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

“I would advise them to not procrastinate. When calc ended, I had two months to study, which I thought was enough time. I pushed it off because I knew I had plenty of time to study. However, I haven’t started studying and now I have two weeks left until I have to take AP calc….”

 

Mariah Ohman, Calc, US History, and Physics

How are you preparing?

“I have bought an AP test book for each one and have been going through those along with using Khan Academy and the AP test website to do practice problems.”

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

“You have to put in the work if you want to get a good score on them. You can’t go into it saying you’re just going to wing it. Set out a short amount of time each day depending on what your schedule allows you to do.”

 

Carson Nelson, Calc, US History, and Physics

How are you preparing?

“I am preparing for them by using my study hall period with a bunch of other people, taking it to study all of the material that is supposed to be on the tests.”

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

“Definitely get a study hall period with some friends that are planning on taking the same tests and just work on everything then. That way if you have any questions you can just talk amongst yourselves and it makes it more fun.”

 

Reece Alexander, Calc, US History, and Physics

How are you preparing?

“Doing problems and studying material to reinforce the stuff I learned previously.”

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

“Studying with a group makes things easier and won’t make your head exploded!”

 

Anika Wodtli, Calc, US History, and Physics

How are you preparing?

“5th period is my study time. I’ll study for at least one of them everyday then study for a different one the next day. For calculus, Mr. Shelley scheduled times for us to go in and study with him. Usually three times a week, we will do morning study session for an hour before school. On Mondays we take the calculus practice test after school. It lasts from 3-9ish. Shelley tries to make it better by bringing us food. For US history, we have two practice tests. Both are on Sundays and last a couple hours. Physics: I’m studying online and in a practice book. All the studying started right after spring break and the tests are in mid May.”

What advice do you have for underclassmen?

“Well, it’s a lot of work, like a LOT of work. You have to go all out with this stuff, but for me it’s worth is because if I get a certain score on an AP test, I get college credit. And If I do get credit, I’m saving my parents $500-$600. They work so hard all the time and if I have the opportunity to save them some money I’m going to take it.”

 

In short, if you see college in your future, talk to your teachers now, forecast for what you want, and find people with similar interests that can help you study! Small steps now can save a lot of time and money later.

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