2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Should an International student take AP classes? Are there any disadvantages of not taking AP classes?

I am a student from India IN grade 10th and in our education system we dont have any AP or Honor classes.

So, should I take AP classes on my own?

Or any other advice?

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3 answers

Accepted Answer
2 years ago[edited]

If you can yes. Taking APs, IBs, or college courses help International students, especially from countries where the amount of education varies a lot from the standard Kindergarten through 12th grades compulsory education in the US.

Maybe in India, college bound HS students attend the same amount of HS as Americans however there are some Latin American and African Countries where secondary education stops at grade 10. So applicants from those countries have 2 years less high school than other International applicants.

One the barriers for International students to take APs is cost because there are not many schools that offer them. There are actually over 50 schools in India that offer them however they are typically private boarding schools or private day schools where the tuition is high. It's expensive for schools to sponsor APs because they have pay CollegeBoard.org for the use of the curriculum. Even in America, many public High Schools do not offer APs or IBs because there is no budget to pay for the material or teachers to teach those courses.

I would recommend that you do some research and fully complete the College Vine profile and make a list of colleges and run your profile against the chancing engine to see what your probability for admittance is. If you have 25% or better chances at getting into American colleges, then I would continue pursuing the goal of applying. If your chancing is in the 1% to 10%, make sure you have a back up plan to apply to other colleges in India as well. It's very difficult to get into US college unless you have the means to pay for your tuition, room and board. That is a bigger obstacle for most International Student versus admittance since there are 1000s of colleges that would love to have you but do not have the funding to give attractive scholarships.

Good luck.

2 years ago

I think AP courses could help your resume look better and also help you learn more but I would have extracurricular activities as your main focus on addition to getting good grades! I hope this helps, I would appreciate if you could accept this answer if it does!

2 years ago[edited]

Since you are international, universities will most likely be prepared to see non-American qualifications. So, it won't necessarily do you harm if you don't do any APs (especially if you still have challenging classes and have shown you are proactive in terms of learning). I would focus more on extracurriculars and other applications boosters rather than worrying about APs.

Also, I am fairly certain that usually international applications aren't actually compared to American applications, but rather are compared with other international applications from the same region (eg, all the Indian applicants will be assessed against each other, not against US applicants) since different countries would have vastly different school systems, as well as different levels of access to extracurriculars and other opportunities.

As an international student myself, I've been boosting my academic profile by taking an extra class within my school system (A levels - most people take 3-4, I take 5) because we have more resources for those qualifications than for AP. As long as you show you are willing to stretch yourself, you should do fine.

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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


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