THE COLLEGE CORNER
We’ve just completed an extremely busy time at AST.
Starting with the preparations for TAIMUN, and then experiencing TAIMUN itself, our students and faculty moved directly into Advanced Placement (AP) testing. We’ve now completed the AP exams at AST, and this gives me an opportunity to tell you why our school has worked to increase the AP offerings for your children.
College Board says “AP courses give students access to rigorous college-level work. AP students build confidence and learn the essential time management and study skills needed for college and career success.” I think this is a true statement. To officially offer an AP class, the course structure, lessons and texts all need to be approved by College Board. They also provide extensive guidance on how to evaluate the material that the students submit, so that colleges and universities can be certain that a particular grade is reflective of the student’s understanding as compared to all other students across the globe who have taken that course. All of this is preparation for the student taking the AP exam itself, which is evaluated by employees of College Board, and scored on a 1 to 5 scale, with a 5 awarded for the highest level of achievement.
In fact, the results of the AP exams are so reliable that many universities are willing to waive introductory classes if a student has scored a 3 or above. In some cases, universities will even offer credit for high AP scores.
Both of these benefit the student (and their family). In the first case, the student has greater freedom with time and course selection, since they can avoid taking required introductory courses. In the second case, the student receives the same benefits, but also receives actual course credits which apply directly to graduation requirements. This means that the student with high AP exam scores can (depending upon the university, of course) graduate earlier and at lower cost than other students.
For all these reasons, Mr. Corcoran has actively encouraged the adoption of additional AP classes at AST. In 2009, before Mr. Corcoran joined AST, the school offered four AP courses.
AST currently offers 18 AP courses, and we plan to add more. A full list of our AP courses can be found on our website, under Curriculum. The public High School that I worked at in Seattle has about 1600 students; they currently offer 15 AP classes.
For a local comparison, I looked at the websites for Ivy Collegiate Academy, and Morrison Christian Academy.
Ivy offers four AP classes: https://ica.ivyjhs.tc.edu.tw/academics/curriculum/
AP classes really give students the opportunity to take college-level courses before entering a college or university. They do require greater effort from students, but they also can prove a student’s ability to thrive in an academically challenging environment: universities like that.
The complete list of AP classes supported by College Board is here: https://apstudent.collegeboard.org/apcourse
Courtesy of Dan Norton-Middaugh