Lesson – AP, IB, and Dual Enrollment
The illustration above reflecting AP enrollment in the San Diego Unified School District provides an example of pressure that students may experience to enroll into AP classes, as well as pressure by high school counselors to push more students from certain demographic groups to enroll. Consider that the pressure on students can be based on the expectations of colleges. For example, since over 90 percent of White and Asian students are enrolled in AP classes, colleges may expect White and Asian students to take such classes. Whereas, since only 62 percent of Latino and African American students are enrolled in AP classes, school counselors may feel pressure to push more Latino and African American students to enroll in AP classes to reduce the racial disparity. However, prior to allowing themselves to pushed into taking AP classes, any student should consider their ability to perform well in the class as well as to perform well on the AP exam.
Lesson 1: Research the AP (Advanced Placement) Program.How are AP courses and AP exam scores considered by the schools on your preliminary college list?
- Research: What are the AP classes and required exam scores for which the colleges on your list offer course credit? Perform your research by contacting the admissions offices of the colleges on your list or by performing an Internet search on the phrase, “College name + Advanced Placement Course Credit.”
- Example: Georgia Tech offers 3-6 credit hours for AP exam scores of 4-5 (http://www.catalog.gatech.edu/academics/undergraduate/credit-tests-scores/advanced-placement-exams/)
- Example: University of Washington offers 4-15 credit hours for AP exam scores of 3-5 (http://admit.washington.edu/Admission/Freshmen/College/AP)
- Example: Princeton University offers course credit for AP exam scores of 4-5 in specified subject areas (http://www.princeton.edu/pub/ap/table/)
- Example: Williams College does not have a clear or firm policy, but provides guidance as to how AP and IB coursework may be handled (https://dean.williams.edu/policies/advanced-placement-and-international-baccalaureate/)
- AP Scholar Awards: If you are enrolled in, or are planning to enroll in, multiple AP classes, you have the opportunity to receive impressive academic honors, based on your AP exam scores. Explains the recognition offered by the College Board based on your AP exam scores: https://apscore.collegeboard.org/scores/ap-awards/ap-scholar-awards
Lesson 2:Research the IB (International Baccalaureate) Program. How are IB classes or the IB Diploma considered by the colleges on your list?
- Research: What are the IB classes and exam scores that the colleges to which you will be applying offer course credit? Perform your research by contacting the admissions offices of the colleges on your list or by performing an Internet search on the phrase, “College name + IB Course Credit.”
- Review: Review the Montgomery County Schools listing of IB-friendly colleges: https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/uploadedFiles/schools/kennedyhs/programs/ib/2013%20IB%20Friendly%20Schools.pdf
- Example: Texas Tech offers 3-16 credit hours for IB exam scores of 4-7 (http://www.depts.ttu.edu/testing/uce.php/)
- Example: Xavier University of Louisiana offers 3-8 credit hours for IB exam scores of 4-6 (http://www.xula.edu/admissions/creditbyexam.php)
- Example: Boston University offers 8 hours of course credit for IB exam scores of 5 or higher in specified subject areas (http://www.bu.edu/admissions/files/2008/08/ib_course_equivalence.pdf)
- IB Scholarships: Scholarship listing by the IB Alumni Network: http://blogs.ibo.org/alumni/2014/05/06/scholarships/
Lesson 3: Research the Dual/Joint Enrollment Program. How are Dual/Joint Enrollment classes considered by the colleges on your list?
- Research: What are the Dual/Joint Enrollment opportunities in my state and local school district? Perform an Internet search on the phrase, “College name + Dual Enrollment,” “College name + Joint Enrollment,” or “State name + Dual Enrollment.”
- Example: Georgia State offers 3 dual enrollment programs (http://admissions.gsu.edu/how-do-i-apply/high-school-students/dual-enrollment-programs/)
- Example: The South Carolina Technical College system offers 3 dual enrollment programs (http://www.sctechsystem.com/students/dual-enrollment.html)
- Example: In Texas, the Texas Education Agency provides an overview of the dual credit program (http://www.texaseducationinfo.org/Home/Topic/Dual%20Credit?br=High%20School%20to%20College)
- Note: Since dual enrollment classes are actual college courses, many private or out-of-state colleges will not offer course credit to incoming freshmen. Therefore, you must carefully research each college’s policy. Other important considerations:
- Grades will become a permanent part of your college transcript
- Failing grades may require you to reimburse your school district for the cost of the class
Lesson 4: Research Early or Middle College Programs. What is the impact of Early or Middle College Programs on your postsecondary pathway?
- Research: What Early or Middle College Programs are available in your school district or state? What are the advantages or limitations of such programs?
- Am I planning to pursue a bachelor’s degree, or enter into the workplace after high school with the associate’s degree earned through the Early or Middle College Program?
- What are the potential cost savings of the 2 years of college classes taken through the Early or Middle College Program if I continue my education at an in-state college or university?
- Will I be able to apply to an out-of-state institution as a freshman applicant, or will I be required to apply as a transfer student?
- How many of the Early or Middle College classes will I be able to receive course credit for?
- Will enrollment in the Early or Middle College Program limit my ability to participate in extracurricular activities?
- Based on the colleges and universities to which I am planning to apply, will participation in the Early or Middle College Program hinder or enhance my application?
Lesson 5: Critical Analysis. After identifying the webpages where each of your colleges list the credits offered for AP, IB, or dual/joint enrollment classes, complete the AP, IB, Dual/Joint Enrollment Table for each of your colleges to determine the type of classes for which you are most likely to receive college course credits.
- Sample AP/IB, Dual/Joint Enrollment Table
- AP/IB, Dual/Joint Enrollment Table (Note: you must make a copy of the form prior to entering your information)
- Read: “Tips for Parents: AP vs. IB – Which is best for my kid?” http://www.davidsongifted.org/db/Articles_id_10701.aspx
- Video: Differences between the AP and IB programs explained by a college admissions counselor: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-0suhStl0RU
- Video: Dual/Joint Enrollment advice from a college admissions officer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGlNJEycrdc
- Video: Explanation of the IB Program by the University of the District of Columbia: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJrEtx1l4Ng
- Video: Perspectives regarding the AP program from students and college admissions officers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLAqmPNRDMA
- Video: AP course perspectives from students: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmfSnCHOTbc&list=PLsaui3l-P1ponTFel4xyGTybt4cPNwNol
- Video: Dual/Joint Enrollment Today Show interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z3VyCtb-Wn0
- Video: Dual/Joint Enrollment student conversations: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTLeBlXyNzo
- Video: IB Program discussed by a student and MIT Admissions Officer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tV_HJO2dERE
- Narrative: After completing the AP, IB, and Dual Enrollment Table, write a narrative summarizing the types of classes (i.e., AP, IB, Dual Enrollment) and coursework most aligned with your educational and career aspirations. For example, are you planning to take AP coursework focused on math and science as preparation for pursuing STEM-related careers or AP coursework focused on literature, history, and languages as preparation for pursuing careers in the arts and humanities? Will you be pursuing dual/joint enrollment classes focused on earning college credit at public colleges and universities?
Writing Prompt #1 – What type of classes are most aligned with my college choices for which I have the best opportunities to receive college credit?: Based on what you learned from the webpages of each of your colleges, which type(s) of classes are most likely to receive course credit? (50 – 100 words)
Writing Prompt #2 – What are the type and level of classes that are most aligned with my college major or career aspirations?: What are the type and level of classes that you are planning to take during the next school year that are aligned with your desired college major, or career aspirations? List each class and explain why you believe the class is aligned with your college major or career aspiration.
Writing Prompt #3 – Based on what you have learned, will you be making any changes to your course schedule?: In the “Narrative – Pursuing Exceptionality,” you completed the form, “My School Year and Summer Schedule.” Based on what you have learned in this activity, and through your college research, do you plan to make any future changes to your planned course schedule? If so, why? If not, why not?