How much do my senior year grades of the 2nd semester matter in comparrison to the work load colleges see when i apply?
I am considering taking 4 AP classes this fall to catch up to the average 6-7 my class usually takes. I am a bit concerned becasue I've only taken 1 before, and it is senior year so it will be a bit stressful on it's own with applying and etc. However, I still feel like it might be worth it because this is my last chance for colleges to see the rigor of classes I took in comparison to the rest of my class. How would I go about sending my transcript with my senior year schedule in order for them to know I am taking 4 APs? And if for instance, if i was accepted in a school, would the second semester grades change their acceptance or interfere with any financial aid? I am concerned that the work load will be much to keep a strong GPA, but I am hoping that at that point it won't really matter because I will already be accepted and hopefully have all the financial aid stuff settled. I am not sure if that is how it works, but any clarification would help so much.
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Hi there! It's great that you're thinking about things like course balance ahead of time. It is a very valid concern that senior year might be stressful with more APs and college applications.
To answer your questions:
- You will report your senior year classes in the Current or Most Recent Year Courses tab in the Education section. Colleges will see your senior year course load that way, and will also be sent a mid-year report and final transcript from your counselor. Your fall transcript will also likely list in-progress courses. Basically, don't worry - colleges will know what courses you're taking senior year!
- If you're accepted and your grades drop drastically, you could get your acceptance rescinded, or merit aid taken away. If you have a slight drop in grades, nothing will likely happen, but if you go from an A average to a C average or worse, that's cause for concern.
If you don't think you can get a B or higher in your AP classes while submitting quality college apps, then you may want to take 1-2 less rigorous courses. Taking AP classes but performing poorly (or having to submit rushed applications) won't reflect well on your candidacy. That said, it is possible that taking 4 APs will be more manageable than you expect, especially if the courses are in subjects you enjoy and tend to do well in (and if you've already taken lots of honors courses). By virtue of the different prerequisites for AP classes at some schools, some students do have a drastic increase in AP courses (like 1-2/year to 4+ senior year), and they do just fine. Maybe ask students at your school who have taken the classes to get a general feel for course difficulty. Just remember that everyone's experience is different, and consider the different opinions carefully.
Hope this helps, and let me know if you have more questions!
You have a difficult decision to make because if you only took 1 AP junior year, taking 4 will be challenging. Plus there is an expectation that you will sit for the exams in May 2021 as well and pass them with a 3 or higher. When you fill out the common or coalition app, you have to upload your 12th-grade schedule into the application so you don't have to worry about getting the 12th-grade classes to the colleges that use those applications. Each college will have its own deadline for when they need to mid-year grades so you will be notified as well. If your school adopts a pass/fail or pass/incomplete grading system then you just have to make sure you pass all your classes. If you will be receiving grades then you do have to perform well in your classes because they will look at the grades. The more elite the college is the more scrutiny they will place on your midyear and final grades. I know of a student who was accepted into UCLA regular decision but had serious senioritis and got low marks in her final semester. Her application was rescinded and no money in the world could fix her mistake to blow off the last semester of HS.
I think 4 AP classes are a good number to take, but overall it is about you. If you feel too nervous about taking AP, phasing down to Honors is a good choice. It still challenges you with a bit less stressing over a lot of work. I would also suggest only phasing down in 2 AP classes that you feel you would have a harder time with maintaining a good grade in. Honors/AP/IB classes all help your GPA because it is a higher level class.
So from what I know they only ask to see the schedule when you send in the official transcript. If you apply after 1st semester ends they will likely ask for 1st semester grades. So you will send your 9-11 transcript and then say what classes you are enrolled in. I may be taking AP stats so I’d report a course by saying AP class title statistics class name
Hope this helps and please comment if something is unclear. I’d be happy to help.