Choosing high school classes can be stressful, especially if you’re getting ready to start high school or wondering which classes look best on college applications. Here are a few tips to help you choose your courses with confidence so you can make the most of your time in high school.
Learn about your high school’s graduation requirements.
Each high school has specific graduation requirements or classes you must pass to graduate from high school. These requirements vary by state and by the type of school you attend. Some schools require one or two semesters of health or physical education. Some ask for a certain number of years of English and math. Visit your school counselor to find out your school’s requirements so you can choose classes that will keep you on track to graduate.
Find out which classes you need for college admission.
If you’re considering college, find out how many core classes (math, English, science, etc.) you need to complete to satisfy college admission requirements. Many colleges request four years of English, math, and world language. They also look for two years of laboratory science and at least two years of history. If you’ve started making your college list, check with the schools on your list for specific requirements. Engineering, art, music, and specialized majors often have additional prerequisites.
Understand the difference between weighted and unweighted GPA.
If your school has weighted GPAs, consider taking honors or AP classes. A B+ in an honors class often looks better than an A- in a regular-level class. Start by choosing an honor or AP class in a subject you enjoy. Once you’ve completed a course, you will better understand expectations and determine if you’re ready for another class. Challenge yourself, but don’t sign up for more than you can handle.
Explore your interests.
Electives are a fun way to explore your interests! Use the opportunity to sign up for a class that sounds interesting. School doesn’t have to be boring! Plus, you are more likely to get a good grade in a class you love!
Choosing your high school classes can be overwhelming. Remember, you don’t have to make these decisions alone. Your school’s counselor and your personal support system can help! Make an appointment with your counselor or ask your parents, guardians, or champions for advice and assistance. They will have plenty of valuable input to help you stay on track.