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Is it difficult on you if you don’t take college classes in high school ?

When you’re in college is it harder if you don’t have college level classes in high school? #high-school #college

I did not take AP classes in high school. I was not smart enough for Advanced Placement classes. Instead, I took Community College classes at night while in High School. And, when I graduated from High School, I already had completed 12 college credit units (almost a semester!) before I actually attended a real 4- year college. I graduated from college in 3 1/2 years, got a great job after graduation, and then married my high school sweetheart. Roger Hancock

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Christos’s Answer

Hi Christian,

The best answer I can give you is probably not. I know there is a lot of pressure for high school kids at this point in time to do college classes early, to attend summer camps at universities etc. If you would like to attend a very competitive university with a low acceptance rate (Standford, MIT, Harvard), then it is important to go through experiences that can differentiate you from the rest of the crowd. One of those can be summer college classes, but volunteering, school groups, personal projects can be other ways of standing out.

However, I would say that when you're looking towards colleges you should first focus on your high school academics. There's no point going to a college courses in high school if you don't feel comfortable with the high school material. If you don't have any gaps in your high school education, I would say you should go for it! It will give you invaluable experience and will help your application to the university.

If you care solely about academic performance in college with or without taking prior college courses; I would say that many of my classmates who did not take previous college work in high school and did great in college.

It really depends on each individual however; could a college course spark some creativity in you? is the professor particularly charismatic and you're interested in the topic? does the college course distract you from the summer homework you need to do to succeed in high school?

Good luck!

Christos recommends the following next steps:

Ask yourself why you want to take the college course
Evaluate if it is important to you for your goals (college acceptance, knowledge enhancement, interest)

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Anita’s Answer

Great question! While the answer is different for everyone, generally, most colleges will want to see that a student has taken at least one challenging class in high school so they can better prepare for the kind of study habits and time management needed on campus. I have heard of kids who took the easiest classes in high school so they could have great grades, and then found it very difficult to transition to college because they had never learned how to manage academic challenges.

If you are still in high school, I would say, go ahead and take one challenging class to see how it is for you. You may surprise yourself by realizing it's not as hard as you thought. Or maybe, you will learn that while the subject matter is more challenging, you found a great way to manage your time and keep up on homework to still get a grade that pleases you. Even if you find you didn't do as well as you hoped, there are positive things that can be learned from that. Perhaps it wasn't an easy subject for you, and that is good to know before going to college. Or, maybe you did not put in your best effort. Again, this is something you can change the next time you have this experience and that is all a part of learning. These are the kinds of lessons that are learned by us only when we step out of our comfort zone. Good luck!

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James’s Answer

If your still in high school, I suggest speaking with your guidance counselor. They can provide you guidance based on your grades. I would not suggest taking a college course if you do not have the basics that you would learn at the high school level. Now, if you are set on receiving college credit while in high school, aside from taking AP courses, you can always look into CLEP (College Level Examination Program). It is a program where you can take a test and receive college credit for the course. You will have to pay for the exam out of pocket and study the material they send you. Here is the website if you are interested: https://parents.collegeboard.org/college-board-programs/clep. If either of your parents are military, I believe you might be able to take these tests for free.

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Yasemin’s Answer

Hi Christian! I took one AP class in high school and English Composition 1 and 2 through a community college offered at my high school, besides that I didn't really have too much experience with college classes. However, I think if you don't it isn't bad; it's important to just attend class in college, study everyday, be interactive, get tutoring help (it's part of your tuition), reach out to professors if having difficulty and just work hard and stay disciplined. Even if you may have more exposure to college classes in high school it might be a refresher for some classes but it will still requiring studying and staying disciplined with your work in college. If you can take a couple classes that will be helpful; if not don't worry about it, just keep up your grades with your current classes and finish high school strong, then when you get to college continue to be responsible in your course work and it'll pay off!

I hope this helps!
Best of luck!