The Darker Side of AP Classes


AP students in their natural habitat.

Lucy Patrick, Newspaper Editor

In 9th grade I was taken out of the regular and perfectly ordinary World History class and placed into the deadly and smelly AP Human Geography class. It was the first time I had heard about AP and all it would do for my college preparations, so I was disturbingly excited. Little did I know exactly how hard the class would be and the endless nights of me stressing over tests and homework.

That was just one AP, I know people who are taking six. Those people tell me of how little sleep they get and how much stress they have, but the weirdest part is that they chose to have all AP classes. I’ll ask them every once in a while if they would switch out, and they say no, which baffles me. Why would someone deliberately stress themselves out when they could take a regular high school level course instead? The whole point of high school is to get us ready for college; regular classes may not be college courses like APs, but they will still teach you what you need. (Probably.)

One advantage AP classes have over root beer is that some colleges will accept the class as credit so that you don’t have to retake the course. Root beer can’t do that! But of course, that’s only if you pass the exam and even then most colleges only accept a 4 or a 5 as passing, which is difficult for most people.

Teachers have said that there is no point in taking the class if you’re not going to take the exam, so you basically pay for the class since each exam costs money. Students who don’t get free lunch have to pay $90 per exam, so imagine having all your classes be AP. That’s over $500 you have to spend! Whoa baby! And sure if you pass you don’t have to pay for it in college, but if you fail then you pay for the class twice.

Us poor Marshall students have no time for ourselves and have to focus on schoolwork all the time (and also laze about in Journalism class, but that’s besides the point). Advanced placement is great for getting ready for college, but students should stop and think if it’s truly worth it to be taking so many of them right now.