An AP class or a dual enrolment can help students get ahead in college. They not only give them a head start but also save time and money in terms of the college semesters. But how does that happen? What are AP classes and Dual Enrollment? What is the difference between the two and which one is better? Let’s find out the answer to all these questions.

AP Classes

AP classes or advanced placement classes are entry-level college courses that are offered in almost all public and private schools. An AP class for a subject is offered as a standardized school class and is designed to help students prepare for a college-level curriculum. These classes build on the topics that the students are already studying in school and easily take them one step ahead.

AP classes are standardized as opposed to high school courses which vary in curriculum according to the teacher. Students prepare for the AP exam in their AP classes and appear for the exam overseen by the AP College Board. The main aim of an AP exam is to demonstrate a student’s knowledge of college-level subjects and the fact that they can handle college-level work.

In a way, AP exam scores work like SAT to impress the college admission panel. These scores are considered along with the application and the candidates are vetted accordingly. It must be noted that AP classes can get a student high school credit and the AP exam scores can lead to potential college credit. While SAT students get none of these except a boost to their college application.

AP Exam Subjects

The College Board offers 34 AP subject exams. It covers everything from different languages to science, math, and arts. To check the complete list of AP subjects, you can click here.

How can you Earn College Credit?

The full form of AP – Advanced Placement is itself indicative of the fact that it provides some type of advancement to the students. AP exams enable students to earn college credits in high school. This credit helps them skip a semester or a year at college because they have already studied the subject/topics.

This way, an AP exam help in saving as much as one college year along with related expenses such as tuition fees, boarding fees, etc. The saved year also paves the way for double majors, faster degrees, and extra time for travel and other activities.

Dual Enrollment

Dual enrollment or concurrent enrollment is when students studying in high school, take classes at a local college and simultaneously earn college credit. It is the process of allowing students to enroll in two academic institutions at once: a high school and a college.

Dual enrollment provides students with a chance to move ahead to advanced courses and be ready for the upcoming subjects. The biggest benefit of dual enrollment is that it lets the students accumulate college credits while in school and helps them graduate early or right on time.

Dual enrollment gives the students a chance to study a subject that isn’t offered at their high school. It also provides them an insight into how college and its course-work feel like. Dual enrollment can help high-school students delve deeper into their academic interests and explore them with precision and depth.

Dual enrollment can also be a chance to get admission to a preferred college by demonstrating the ability to handle difficult course work and a penchant for hard work. Admission offers are often very keen about this ability while choosing the students for their college, therefore, along with college credits, a dual enrollment also improves the chances of getting admissions to top colleges across the country.

Dual Enrollment Application

To participate in a dual enrollment program, a student must sign a participation form at the high school. He/she will also be required to meet some basic admission criteria at the post-secondary institution and then make satisfactory progress.

How can you Earn College Credit?

Students earn college credit if they pass a dual enrollment class with grades C and above. But one important thing to remember is that not all prestigious institutes grant college credit for the coursework completed during school time. So, before you enroll in a dual enrollment class, you must find out if your preferred college considers dual enrollment or AP classes or none of them.

Both AP Exams and Dual Enrollment provide meritorious students with a chance to test their mettle. They both can help in earning college credits and the opportunity to graduate earlier. The difference lies mostly in how they work rather than what they can do for a student. Which one is better? The answer to this completely lies in your plans and inclination towards particular subjects.

If you are considering choosing between the two, you will have to check several factors as the availability of classes at your school, subject availability, and of course, your preferred college’s criteria. You can always talk to your school counselor or a teacher for guidance.  

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