The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

AP students, teachers give tips for success

Laura Hefty studies for an AP class.

The high school has a wide variety of Advanced Placement classes. These are college-level courses offered with the intention to better prepare students for college.

Because there is a chance of earning college credits by scoring a 3 or above on a national exam, 144 students are taking on the workload of an AP class. For a high school student, these classes are a more advanced workload than students are used to.  

“Sometimes I have to take priorities and do certain homework before I go to work, or before I have extra curricular activities,” said AP Calculus student Matthew Jacobs.

Another student agreed that it is a different environment, the lectures are much longer and focus time is expected to be more than the average high school class. It gets easier as students start to learn the flow of the class and more time management skills.

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“I prioritize what needs to be done, and I just sit down and I work to get it all done,” said AP Psychology student Laura Hefty. “I do homework right when I get home from school. I actually I start at like four, and probably from four to six I do AP stuff.”

AP Psychology teacher Tony Boerger explained that he helps all of his students understand the demands and time management skills needed in these collegiate level courses.

“I actually taught an enrichment on time management during lunch and learn. I had some students come to it. It’s something that I’ve talked about a few times in class, especially in the first few classes,” said Boerger.

Along with extended study times, AP Environmental Science and AP Biology teacher Clare Knodle reflects that students in her class get stressed often, but there is no need for stress.

“I think in, in some cases, it [stress] is warranted, the class is often at a pace that they’re not used to. The lectures are kind of one and done. Students have to do their own studying, the class continues. There’s not a lot of repetition,” said Knodle. “However, if they keep up with the class, they do some of it every day. They don’t need to be stressed. The other part of it is if they are really motivated, and really want to learn this stuff, it’s more fun and they learn how much easier it is if you’re motivated to learn.”

The three students all agreed that they would take AP classes again, saying it will help them in college. Knodle also remembered that she has had past AP Biology students thanking her for helping prepare them for college.

“I have feedback from past AP bio students that said that I prepared them well, to either jump into a higher level biology class or to really breeze through that first level biology course,” said Knodle.

Boerger agreed that AP classes will definitely better acclimate students to the college atmosphere.

“The kinds of things that we do and the amount of information we cover, it’s so similar to a college class. I think particularly taking multiple AP classes will better prepare you,” said Boerger. “Now, having said that, in college you don’t have eight classes at a time. But I think the rigor of an AP classes very similar to what you would get those college classes.”

Senior Sarah Guenther is taking AP US History. She thinks that as long as students are prepared for a higher level of work, AP classes will be highly beneficial to students who plan on going to college.

“You just have to know that AP classes are a higher level of work,” said Guenther. “You need to be able to complete the assignments. I don’t think that there’s like a lot of work to do, but you have to do it in good time. And it has to be quality work that you are turning in. As long as you care about the class you will do great, and be very well prepared for college.”

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AP students, teachers give tips for success