5 Tips for Selecting Courses for Next Year

Junior Kendall Bulleit chose to take APUSH her junior year and honors Biology.

Credit: Nicole Browne/ Achona Online

Junior Kendall Bulleit chose to take APUSH her junior year and honors Biology.

It’s that time of the year again- the time to start selecting classes for next year. Though it may feel like the year just started, this is a wake up call for all students that the school year is coming to a close and its time to start thinking about the near future.

Here are some tips for deciding which classes to take next year.

  1. Take classes you are interested in.

Whether it be your choice of elective or the science you choose to take, select a class that you will be excited about. If you’re like me, go ahead and take another year of Chemistry if that is what sparks your interest! I suggest finishing the required electives as soon as you can so that come junior year, you can explore your creative capabilities with classes such as Technical Theatre Design & Production I or Photography & Digital Imaging I.  Or if you prefer an academic elective, choose to take Psychology or AP Human Geography with Dana Nazaretian.

**Freshman- This doesn’t really apply to you, due to the amount of classes you will be required to take your sophomore year. Sorry 🙁

2. Let your teachers help you decide.

Believe it or not, your teachers know a thing or two about the kinds of students that will excel in a specific class. If your teacher has recommended you for a class, even if it’s not the class you wanted, consider their advice. Before you waive into a higher level class or another elective, really think about whether or not you will prosper in the class.

3.  Ask around- what classes are your friends taking?

From my experience, being in a class with friends who will study with me and explain the concepts that I don’t understand is life saving. Taking the same course as a friend who you know will work hard with you to succeed means that you will have a constant support system throughout the year. They will help you with missed work and sympathize with the struggle of difficult tests and impossible loads of homework.

Junior Katie Quackenbush advises,”Having friends in the same classes is helpful because you can study together and they can help you understand difficult material.”

4.  That being said, don’t take a course just because your friends are.

You have to think about yourself- your interests and your work ethic. Your friends may want to take photography, but if you have a passion for drawing- take drawing! Similarly, if your friends are all taking an honors class but you feel that you are ready to challenge yourself with an AP, go for the AP. This will help you in the long run. Not only will you be more excited about the classes you take, but you will likely do better.

5. Challenge yourself!

Upcoming Sophomores- you are now entering into the world of APs with the option to take AP HUG (AP Human Geography). If you and your teacher think that you are ready to take this next step, go for it.

Upcoming Juniors and Seniors- if you have been taking a mix of honors and CP classes thus far, it may be time to take one or two APs. For the upcoming Juniors, I suggest taking AP Lang and or APUSH (AP U.S. History) to start. In my option these classes are most similar to the honors classes but with an increased pace and workload. For these classes, the transition from honors to AP will likely be manageable.

Junior Bruni Neufeld encourages,”Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself. But don’t overdo it; if you are unprepared for the class you will be less motivated to put in a constant effort throughout the year”.

The list of available courses can be found here or on the Academy website. Included in this is the list of classes that you are required to take to graduate.