Finding a different option

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When students go into high school looking for college credit, they usually turn to Advanced Placement (AP) classes. AP classes grant college credit to those who acquire a score of 3 or above on the AP test for the specific class. In addition, passing the class is required to receive high school credit. Unless the school the student attends offers a discount, an AP test is usually priced at $94. Although it seems like a good route for students to take, it is definitely stressful.

Taking AP classes isn’t ideal as one has to pass a test to officially grant the college credit. When paying for a test priced at that high of an amount, it is a true bummer when one receives their test results back and realize a score of 2 or less was earned. When noticing failure, students will feel like taking the class was a waste of time and money. The AP score also becomes a problem when the school a student intended to go to requires a higher score than that of a 3, just beyond satisfactory.

Instead of putting themselves through the stress and hard emotional nights, students should turn to Dual Credit classes. Dual Credit/Enrollment (DC) offers students to take a college course that will fit into a high school schedule. In a DC class, all one has to do is pass the class to receive college credit. There is no test needed to receive the credit. In addition, the class is correspondent to ones high school grades. Meaning, whatever grade is received in the college class is what goes on a high school transcript.

Although one may argue the price for DC classes is too expensive, schools provide financial assistance to those who need it. Another way to lower costs is to apply for a scholarship with the school providing the course. Usually, the student will only have to pay for the course book if there is one needed. Even then, the book can also be found at a discounted price.

A benefit that DC classes have over AP classes is that they don’t require students to attend class every day for the period it takes place in. Because the class is usually only twice a week, it makes scheduling easier as it allows them free time to do other school work. The professors will also allow students to leave early several days as college classes are typically an hour and 15 minutes whereas a typical high school class can last an hour and 30 minutes.

DC classes allow students to have a true experience to feel and prepare themselves for college. Instead of a high school teacher teaching them in an AP class, students have a professor. Traditional to a real college class, students receive their syllabi at the beginning of the year and are aware of all their assignments and due dates. They’re expected to be responsible for due dates and professors rarely remind them. The class is good for practice for those who may want to learn for themselves on how to go about a college class.

If students want to truly save themselves from the tough work and achieve college credit in an easier way, they should take DC. It’s a good opportunity for students to adjust to a typical college schedule while receiving credit for less work. From someone who has taken both AP and DC classes, DC is further beneficial because it is less work and gives a student of feel of what college will be like. AP has the advantage of being slightly cheaper, although there are ways to lower the cost for a DC class as previously stated. After considering the cost and benefits of both sides, DC is another considerable option.

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