I'm starting high school next fall, and I'm seriously freaked out over AP classes. I'm doing only one class (AP Gov) in 9th grade, and sure, that's not too bad, but I'm dreading the junior and senior years. My goal college is Dartmouth, and I want to take a reasonable amount of AP courses to be accepted, but I don't want less than a 4.0 (unweighted) GPA, but before that, I DEFINITELY don't want to have a nervous breakdown and/or insanity. So, does anyone have secrets to share about surviving these tough classes? I've already got a study buddy (we're both in the top 1% of our whole school and have 95+ averages & both scored 1700+ on the SAT), but I'm still worried about the workload and the intense cram sessions. Is it true that many students stay up for 8+ HOURS A NIGHT
doing homework/studying? Also, do people's GPA's drop drastically when taking AP's? I'm scared
1. AP classes are 110% worth it. Another cool route is to take classes at a local community college, say Chem, Calculus or Bio. I had several high school kids in my Intro College bio class I taught at College of Marin. Best students in the class actually, both got A+'s.
They had the ambition to ask me how to get an A in the class.
I told them.
No, you do not ever need to do 8 hours of homework a night. You are still kids and need a life.
It's much wiser to study specifically what you do NOT know, rather than rehashing over what you already do and waste your time. Ask people how to study, this is NEVER taught in classes, I teach it in my class, as it makes my life easier as someone who has to grade papers and exams. Much easier to grade A's and B's, vs C's and D's.
1.Go to class
2. Read ahead, so when you hear the lecture, you are hearing the concepts again(2X)
3. That night before going to bed, or any down time you have waiting around, re write your notes in outline form carefully(3x).
4. Cover one side of the outline and see if you can answer the topic/question you wrote. If you can answer it, it's already in the brain.
If you cannot, then high light it with yellow high lighter(4X).
5. Re read the yellow high lights. This is what you do NOT know. Now try it again after reading again. Still missing 2-3? Highlight in orange this time. Reread again, you pretty much will have them all at that point. (5X)
I do the out lines 2-3 weeks before exams typically. Does not take long.
This will prep for any exams.
If you do the above it's tough to ever get less than a B.
Writing papers, start asap, bring a draft to the instructor at least a few days before it's due, ask how to improve it.