By Whitney Black
WCHS offers a variety of courses for students who are interested in college level classes. Ones who love a challenging course or being ahead of the game may be interesting in the substantial amount of college credits WCHS offers. There are college courses such as advanced placement and dual credit options for a majority of departments at the high school.
Counselor Haley Armstrong discussed the variety of college level courses WCHS has for students to take.
“We have a lot of dual credit options ranging from agriculture, English, business, Science, social studies and World Languages at the 3rd and 4th level. A lot of those partnerships are with Ivy Tech and some are with IU,” Armstrong said.
Dual credit classes require that you get at least a C+ to receive the college credit. Some of these courses are free and some require a $75 fee. However, for students with financial needs, there is a waiver they can receive to cover the fee.Armstrong explained how students can benefit from these courses by saving money.
“One of the biggest benefits is the lack of cost. They can save a lot of money. Some of our students will leave high school with almost a year of college completed. The classes with IU are the ones who require the minimum $75 fee. They are also usually more challenging and can really start to prepare a student for what they might experience in a college level course,” Armstrong said.
When a student is deciding whether to take an advanced placement (AP) or dual credit (DC) course, they should remember that in order to receive their credit in AP, they must pass the AP exam at the end of the year with the score of a three of five. However, some colleges only accept fours and fives and some accept a mix of three, fours and fives. The score the student receives is up to the college on how they want to use that to benefit the student. In DC courses, the student must receive a C+ or higher and when the credit transfers it may not be exactly for the same course, but it will help the student in the end.
AP and DC courses are also weighted, which means there is a certain weight to the grade that will appear on a student’s transcript. Senior Elizabeth Roseman has taken a total of 13 dual credit and AP classes. Roseman discussed the difference in AP and DC classes in the classroom.
“AP courses are more focused on passing the AP test at the end of the year, whereas DC classes are just focused on the people learning the materials required by the college. DC classes are not that much different from regular classes, while AP classes move faster with more work,” Roseman said.
Although these courses are made to be “college level,” some may not be as difficult as others but of course it depends on the student.
Roseman discussed the classes she felt were easier and which brought her more of a challenge.
“The hardest were AP Bio and AP Lit and the easiest were APUSH (advanced placement U.S. History) and AP Lang,” Roseman said.
All students are eligible to take these courses; however, they must be willing to put in the work and effort to get their credit.
Any student who is planning to go to college after high school should look into courses at this level. These courses can help minimize some costs and boost a student’s GPA.