What courses do you have to take/recommend taking in high school and college to become a successful chemical engineer?
As a rising junior I’m already taking 4 AP classes, including AP Chemistry, but I’m not sure if I should be taking AP Physics and AP Biology senior year to set up my path for becoming a chemical engineer. #chemicalengineer #highschoolcourses #AP #engineer #chemical-engineering #course-selection #Engineering #classes #high-school
Also, do some research on the schools that you would like to go to and look at their curriculum requirements. They should also have a page that shows which classes you can get credit for by taking AP classes. I would suggest trying to get credit for some of the general education courses with AP courses. I was able to take a few lighter semesters because I had some of those credits going in, but it is also helpful to take those courses to offset your STEM courses in college.
Overall, you still want to enjoy your high school experience, so do not overwhelm yourself by taking too many AP courses. Figure out what you think you can handle.
Chemical engineering college curriculums are heavy in math and sciences. It is great to have some experience with chemistry, physics, and biology before entering college. The specific requirements will vary by university, but in general, all programs will require chemistry (several semesters) and physics (at least 1 and maybe 2 semesters). Many programs have a biology or biological systems component, but this is not universally required. Check the program requirements (available on-line) at the top three schools that you are interested in attending.
Hopefully, you are working on your math skills, as well. Having some introduction to Calculus in high school is also beneficial.
Sandy recommends the following next steps:
You are already ahead of the game by taking four AP courses. I assume AP Math is also one of the courses you are already taking. If not, I encourage you to take AP Math. I would also add AP Physics as long as you think you are ready to handle the course load. AP Biology wouldn't hurt either, but it is not as important as the others to Chemical Engineering. However, also realize that you'll have time to cover these subjects in college, so don't worry too much if you decide to wait until you enter college. Best of luck.