A Guide to Passing AP Classes

A Guide to Passing AP Classes

By Sophia Lee – America Daily Youth Reporter

Advanced Placement (AP) classes are a popular alternative for high school students to take instead of doing Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO). Although AP classes in high school vary from those taught in college (in that tests can be corrected, giving you the chance to either retake or get corrections), the standards are still the same in both. AP courses are designed to be like college courses, as they rigorously challenge your knowledge and go through information quickly. With this in mind, here are some study tips to help you pass an AP class!

1) Read the Textbook

It’s always important to read the textbook, as many questions on the tests come directly from the book. While it may seem hard and take “forever” to read, it’s worth it. The textbook also goes into detail what your teacher’s notes may ignore. Find different ways to understand the text and make sure NOT to skim it. You should actually read it! Don’t make excuses because there is always time to read the textbook even if you have to lose a couple of hours of sleep to do so. The textbook is also structured so that you can pass the AP test at the end of the year. I promise you won’t regret reading the textbook! 


2) Know Knowledge Beforehand 

It’s helpful in AP classes to know information beforehand. By already having prior knowledge of the subject being taught, you can learn quicker. This helps build on the knowledge you already had and clarify anything you didn’t understand. Less work is thus put in at the end of the unit because you already have a better understanding and don’t have to spend so much time studying the things you already understand. You can also show off your knowledge in a class by knowing the answers to whatever questions your teacher asks. This method works especially well in history classes, such as U.S. History. Have fun learning in order to stay ahead of the class!


3) Actually Study and Know What Works

In order to pass the class, you have to study!! Studying is not an option because you’re pretty much guaranteed (if you do the math) to do worse than someone who actually studies. That doesn’t mean that you have to study only one way. Find out what the most efficient way of studying works for you. If you’re a visual learner than make notes and watch videos to help you learn. For an auditory learner, listen to videos or record the lectures in class so you can listen to them again. There are many different ways to study, so don’t waste your time doing something that doesn’t work!


4) Take Notes 

Another way to be successful is to take notes. Even if the notes are available online, be sure to annotate and write specifics because notes are just a guideline, not the entire chapter full of details. If you can’t write fast enough, go back and do the notes at home. Rewriting notes is also a great study tool since you can remember things better if you write them down! Make the notes work for you by creating acronyms or nicknames to remember things faster. I know that notes are one of the most boring tasks to do in class, but it is necessary to help you pay attention so that you are still learning or retaining things in order to be successful and pass. 


5) Do Work Beforehand 

In order to stay on top of things, you should do homework ahead of time instead of procrastinating. By doing work beforehand, you learn more before everyone else and this goes back to the second point in this article. Finishing ahead of time gives you more free time to do stuff that you actually enjoy and doesn’t make you stress the day before it’s due. Having more free time sounds great to me! Even if the work isn’t due until the end of the unit, AP classes try to push you to stay productive and be on top of things. They are more strict on the quality of work that is expected. Turning in late work won’t be tolerated. You don’t want points off because you didn’t finish the homework that you got two weeks ago, right? If you struggle passing an AP class than you will want all the easy points you can get!


So there you have it! Five simple steps to help you pass any AP class. These are just general guidelines, so feel free to add anything that could help in your success in the AP course. 

Comment your favorite class and be sure to share this with anyone in AP classes right now!