2 years ago
Admissions Advice

I am a sophmore who wants to get into a top school like yale but I am debating if I should take ap physics next year

I am currently taking 3 out of 4 honors classes and I am taking chem which is still advanced. However I have other classmates who are taking all 4 honors classes which feels like a disadvantage for me. I want to get into an ivy league so I am debating if I should take AP Physics next year. I took honors chem in the beginning of the year and it was rough so I decided to take regular to not bring down my gpa and focus on other subjects. I am worried if I do try Ap physics I am going to end up doing horribly and ruining my gpa, but I see websites saying you should take the core ap subjects.I I already got bs in science and math so I don't want to get an even lower gpa. My gpa was around a 3.8 unweighted. I don't know what I am going to major in yet, but it might be something science related. What should I do?

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2 answers

2 years ago[edited]

As a sophomore taking Honors Physics, I don't think you should take AP Physics. If Honors Chemistry was a lot for you, AP Physics would be even more, and with your goals, I doubt you'd be having enough time and energy to give to the class, not to mention the extra load given in Junior year.

I think you should take Honors Physics next year, see how that goes for you, and then reach for AP Physics in senior year once you feel comfortable with Honors first. With Honors Physics, you'd still be displaying interest as well as excellence in Science, and to tie it together, you should take an AP math class, like AP Calculus!

Physics isn't something that everyone is good at, but if you're good at math, Physics is the way to go, but keep in mind AP Physics may end up being a challenge that won't bear the results you'd want from it. It's up to you though! Good luck!

2 years ago

Hi @lori!

What you've read is true; most applicants applying to science-related majors at Yale and other top schools will have taken more than 8 AP courses, which include core science AP courses. Since you've had no prior experience with physics, it's hard to say whether you'll be able to handle AP Physics or not. How you did in honors chem does not determine how you'll do in advanced/honors/AP Physics. However, your math performance does. If you're not confident about your math skills, don't go beyond honors physics. It won't be worth it if you end up with a C or D in AP Physics as compared to an A or B in honors physics.

Extracurricular activities can improve your application to some extent. Try out some science-related extracurriculars to get a better idea about what you want to major in. Practical applications will help you better understand the material taught in class and will also demonstrate your interest in a field.

Getting into an ivy league is not going to be easy, so keep other safer alternatives on your list. Your career isn't defined by what college you go to, but by the way you choose to utilize the available opportunities for maximizing your potential, so don't stress too much about attending T20s.

Hope this helps!

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


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

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