Everyone knows that Advanced Placement courses are the way to go when developing a college-ready repertoire, but acquiring the courses is only the first step. How do you navigate the final results? What status exists beyond initial scores? How will your results impact your college application? It may seem daunting at first, but Zinkerz has an answer for you. To approach this topic, we need to establish what AP courses will do for you at a minimum.
It is no secret that taking AP courses will give any student a leg up in their academic endeavors. For personal betterment, they contribute to a more in-depth understanding of the material and will always be worthwhile! For universities, however, it is the result that matters most: the AP exam scores. As important as AP courses have become on an applicant’s resume, everyone has them. Taking AP courses does not, in itself, diversify you as an applicant—but don’t let this discourage you! There are ways to distinguish yourself among your peers and make yourself a prime candidate for the college of your dreams.
The AP Scholar Award is the first of two resume enhancements worth considering. This award is granted to students who achieve a score of 3 or higher on at least three of their AP exams. At first glance, achieving this may seem straightforward, but it requires self-discipline worth recognizing. Coursework in three or more AP courses can make for a worthy challenge when gunning for high scores on all of them. It takes a dedicated student to maintain momentum until the end of the testing season.
The second achievement worth noting is the AP International Diploma (APID). This is a globally recognized certificate that can be achieved by scoring a 3 or higher on at least five AP exams. The requirements for this are strict regarding the subject matter of the five AP courses. This diploma is available to international students applying to colleges in the United States. While this may be more complicated, it is a great way to gain recognition as you strengthen multiple areas of study.
For the APID, requirements include: a global perspectives course (i.e., world history, macroeconomics, environmental science, etc.); at least one math/science/computer science course (i.e., biology, calculus, physics, etc.); and one additional subject that cannot be English or a world language (i.e., psychology, music theory, etc.). Students who work better in a diversified environment, finding it more appealing to explore a wider variety of knowledge, may find the APID the award to set your sights on. On the other hand, unlike the APID, the AP Scholar Award can be achieved with any AP course of interest. It may be more motivating for some students to tackle subjects they’re already passionate about or interested in. If enthusiasm for the subject is what it takes to get a 5 on the exam, the AP Scholar award may be the goal for you!
While AP awards and exam scores likely will not be the deciding vote of your college career, it is important for a student to represent their best self. Admissions committees will value your well-roundedness if taking fewer AP courses enables you to balance some excellent extracurriculars and hours of community service. If taking more AP courses would best represent your educational prowess, then the APID may be an excellent feature for your resume. Know yourself and the balance needed to present yourself as a worthy college applicant.
All this talk of the AP Awards may be thrilling and inspiring, but it may leave you wondering where you can go from here. Great news! Our team here at Zinkerz provides AP courses that are well-balanced to offer classes in all subjects. With our offered AP courses, you’ll either find an exciting new subject to take on or you’ll be able to finally complete a lingering course requirement. Whatever your goals, Zinkerz has the tools for you to exceed your expectations and become a stellar college applicant.