2 years ago
Admissions Advice

How much of a difference does taking 4 years of foreign language (Spanish) have on college admissions instead of just 3?

I am debating whether to take AP stats or Spanish IV. I am interesting into going into business and my schedule will consist of APUSH, AP Micro, Honors English IV, Honors Calculus, Honors Physics, and either Honors Spanish IV or AP Stats.

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4 answers

2 years ago[edited]

It only matters if you are applying to Harvard College or any elite college that has a 4 year one foreign language requirement.


For all other colleges, I would say if you follow this guideline put out by Yale University, it will help you choose which is the most meaningful path to take.

copied from Yale:

Ask Yourself These Questions

When weighing your course selection for the upcoming year, here are a few things to consider:

Am I taking a well-balanced academic program that will provide me with a good foundation for college?

Am I prepared to take college-level math, writing, and science courses?

Do I feel challenged by the courses that I am taking?

Are my courses among the more rigorous ones available to me at my school?

Am I seeking challenge or avoiding it?

Overall, is my four-year high school program among the most challenging programs available at my school?

It is wise to first consult your teachers and high school counselor on what courses are most appropriate for you at your high school. You will doubtless have to make some difficult decisions about which courses to take and how to balance your schoolwork and your extracurricular pursuits. We hope that this advice helps inform you as you make those decisions.

(In my personal opinion, unless you are applying to Wharton, MIT, UTAustin, UMich, NYU, Berkeley Haas, or another top B-school, I think the value of an MBA trumps the value of any Undergrade Business degree. If you are not concerned about the clout of the school or landing a job at Goldman, MS, or JPMorgan as an investment banker, then I would think that having some intellectual vitality in business is more important than a particular AP you can take. All the top business schools are looking for risk takers that are curious about challenging themselves in business so if you started a company or non-profit or have made a lot of money trading crypto or running a side hustle on eBay, that's more impressive than an AP)

Good luck.

2 years ago

Hi @20njr13!

Most elite colleges like to see four years of foreign language in high school, but it's only a recommendation. If AP stats is closer to your intended major or extracurricular interests, it would probably benefit you more to take that instead.

Hope that helps!

2 years ago

It depends on the college and your major, but it shows commitment and interest. That is great for college admissions.

2 years ago

Not much difference, the goal is to show the college admission officers that you are bilingual and prove you have the ability to speak two languages. Good luck.

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Duke University
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Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


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