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Why You Should Take The Advanced Placement (AP) Courses (but only when you are ready)

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With the hit show “AP Bio” AP is all the range, dominating the media and conversation. The concept was developed during the Cold War (1950’s) to ensure that the population was well educated. Becoming the academic benchmark, elite schools adopted it as their own, using it to determine both entrance and scholarships. 

The program is administered by “The College Board”, an independent testing and curriculum system. Their operation is split into two areas, testing and course delivery. One does not need to enroll in their courses (to sit for the test) but this is not advisable. As will be explained further on, the test assessed students on a quantitative rubric. If a student were to test poorly, it would have been better had they not tested in the first place. 

The benefits (2021) are overwhelming, offering students advanced credit in their undergraduate year. Assuming the student meets the academic requirements, students can skip the introductory material and enrol in classes that prima facie require that the prerequisite to be satisfied. From a financial perspective, the testing is cheaper than a traditional credit-class (on campus) provided that the student is adequately prepared. 

As a nod to inclusion, there are no longer entrance requirements. Of course, the student is responsible for judging their own level. One consideration to note is that students lose optimism when they are placed artificially high (academically), with the student unable to perform at the same level as their peers. 

The courses cover most subject areas, with some areas having multiple courses in a single area. They are related to specific professional goals, like mechanics and engineering. In addition, there are many language courses, like French, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese. Inspiration Learning Center is proud to offer language support in French and Mandarin Chinese, with native speakers who are experts at the AP curriculum. Many prestigious schools expect multilingualism, especially in the global market. 

The mark is graded on a spectrum, with 1 being the lowest and 5 being the strongest. In actuality, any grade below a 4 is a waste, and will not give you access to any of the benefits illustrated above. To be used correctly, an AP report should be perfect, in all areas tested. Once again, if a student is not confident in a subject, they should seek professional guidance through our educational consultants before acting with poor judgement. We have been doing this for over 20 years, our job is getting students into the best programs, taking them from where they are and helping them climb mountains!

Examples of Ontario Acceptance of AP Courses as Undergraduate Equivalents. 

Please note that this is just a small sample size, with five courses represented here. There are many Canadian schools that do accept AP, please visit https://apstudents.collegeboard.org to choose the course that is right for you. 

All schools in Canada require an AP grade of “4” or “5” with lower marks being rejected outright. For scholarship purposes, a “5” is expected in combination with a strong academic record and history of community service. The material is difficult, by design. Students are expected to be intellectually potent and able to use strong critical reasoning skills. While many of the questions are posed in a “ABCD” selection format, the writing is assessed by a qualified invigilator. 

AP English Language and Composition

Carleton University, Trent University, Waterloo University, Wilfred Laurier University

AP Chemistry

Carleton University, Ryerson University, Trent University, Waterloo University, Western University, Wilfred Laurier University

AP Macroeconomics:

Carleton University, Ryerson University, Trent University, Waterloo University, Wilfred Laurier University

AP Statistics:

Carleton, Ryerson, Waterloo, University of Western Ontario

AP French:

Carleton University, Ryerson University, Trent University, Waterloo University, University of Western Ontario, Wilfed Laurier University 

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Tips To Master The AP

  1. Get the approved course guide, with an overview of the course material and test questions. Become familiar with the format and what is expected. If you are uncertain, reach out to the Inspiration Team and we will be happy to guide.
  2. Take AP courses at your school, with many public and private schools offering them. 
  3. Make sure that your university of choice recognizes your AP standing.
  4. Set a goal for a “5” on the AP test.
  5. Enrol in supplement group classes that enrich the testing area. 

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