Preparing for College, AP vs Dual Enrollment

AP Courses versus Dual Enrollment Courses: Decide for Yourself

I am in an Advanced Placement Workshop in Chapel Hill, NC and boy have I been enlightened. Being a proponent of Dual Enrollment for years, after this workshop, I have changed my mind. FYI: Dual enrollment students are students enrolled in high school while also taking a few community college courses at the same time. AP students are enrolled in advanced high school courses where they could earn a college credit by scoring 3 or higher on their exams.

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So I felt it was my duty to share with parents and students of Middle and High school the advantage of AP courses. I mentioned middle school so that they could start thinking ahead because the GPA from 8th grade could help qualify or disqualify students for an AP course in 9th grade.

AP Information

  1. Advance Placement courses provides greater educational outcomes for student. Did you know that when students apply to college, having AP courses listed on their transcripts makes them more competitive?
  2. Ap students who score 3 or higher on exams, are more likely than dual enrollment students to earn a college degree within four years, which could save students/families time and money in the long run. Did you know that when students have a choice between going to a community college to take a basic “core” classes or a high school AP core course, the AP course will provide more rigor? This is huge because AP courses was made to prepare students to think more critically, and complete challenging assignments.
  3. AP students have higher college GPAs than dual enrollment students.  Did you know that if an admission team is looking at a dual enrollment student versus an AP students’ transcript, the AP student will look more appealing because of the level of rigor in AP courses?

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What the critics say!

  1. Why should my child take an AP course when they can go ahead and take a core class at the community college and have it count as a college credit automatically? My answer: You should have your child take the AP course because it is more rigorous, it will look better to college admission teams, and statistically AP students will finish college on time due to being able to handle more challenging material.
  2. Wouldn’t a college be more likely to take a dual enrollment student over an AP student, since the dual enrollment student has already taken basic community college courses? My answer: No! There are a lot of admission teams (who wouldn’t admit it in public 😉 and research that shows that most dual enrollment students still has to be remediated once they enter college where as, AP students do not. (This even includes the ones who score under 3 on their exams) because of their rigorous curriculum.

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AP Student Takeaways

  1. AP Students who score a 3 or higher on the exam will get to count that credit as a college credit.
  2. AP Students who score under a 3 on the exam will get to have it on their transcript which will still help with college admissions.
  3. AP students have a higher success rate to complete college on time.
  4. AP students are more likely to out-perform dual enrollment students their first year in college.

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AP Exam and Curriculum Takeaways

  1. Courses and exams are developed by representatives from colleges and universities across the nation and align with standards set by well respected liberal arts and research institutions.
  2. AP teachers’ syllabi go a review by college faculty ensuring consistency in quality and expectations across AP courses.
  3. AP exams provides a standard means of comparison between AP courses nationwide.
  4. AP exams provide external validation of teaching and learning in the classroom. The exams are scores by college professors and expert teachers, not the students’ personal teacher.

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AP vs Dual Enrollment Programs

Dual enrollment programs do not have any external measures, such as a standardized assessment to measure and ensure consistency in quality. It is for this reason it is difficult for admission officers and college faculty to gauge the quality of any given dual enrollment course. http://www.ncappartnership.org/ap-research.html

Access to challenging work is essential for college and career readiness. So parents and students, consider AP classes, you will not regret it, it will only benefit you!

AP-Concurrent

It is the belief that students should challenge themselves and take courses for which they are academically prepared and motivated. ~College Board

 

story time

The Parable of the Tenants

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I was reading a parable called “The Parable of the Tenants” and it really stood out to me so you know I had to share.

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The parable spoke about a landlord that planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it and built a watchtower. After everything was put in place, the landlord decided to lease it out and move to another country.

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Time passed and when harvest time came, the landlord decided to send some of his servants to the tenant, to get some of the fruits he had planted. When the servants arrived, the tenants beat one, killed another and stoned the other.

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The landlord heard of it and decided to send even more servants, in hopes that they would be received but the tenants responded in the same way as before.

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The landlord could not believe it so he decided the best thing to do would be to send his own son to collect his produce/fruit. He sent his son, and when the tenants saw him, they said among themselves, “This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and seize on his inheritance.” So they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him.

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The parable ended with a question by the person telling the parable. The question was, “When the landlord comes back to his vineyard, what do you think he will do to the tenants?”

The people listening to the parable answered that the landlord would surely destroy the wicked tenants, and get new tenants to occupy the land. Tenants that would give the fruits to the landlord during their rightful seasons.

The creator of this parable, asked the people listening another question, a question tying the parable with what was happening at that present time. He asked, “Haven’t you read in the scriptures, the stone (referring to Jesus) which the builders rejected is the same stone, that will become the Head of the corner. And the kingdom of God shall be taken from you (pharisees and other who rejected the deity of Jesus), and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.

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This passage speaks volumes to me and is thought provoking —–> Whoever will fall on the stone shall be broken but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder (Matthew 21: 44)

I like how it said whoever falls on Jesus (the stone) will be broken. Being broken is a good thing because it provides the opportunity for things to be broken off of us that is no longer needed. We should take comfort that brokenness doesn’t last forever, eventually we mend, heal, and become new again. Another thing that is good about being broken is how humbling it is. Once we experience brokenness, it usually gives us an empathy toward others that make us more sensitive and caring human beings.

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The other part of the passage was sobering, it said that whoever the stone falls on, will be ground to powder. Yikes. That is not something I would like to experience. So I will take brokenness over being ground to powder any day, thank you very much.

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I thought it was so interesting how the parable was used to explain to the pharisees in story form, how their disbelief appeared before the landlord (God) who allowed tenants (the pharisees) to managed his land and how the landlord (God) will deal with them (the pharisees and anyone who rejected) for killing/rejecting His son (Jesus).

So when you would like to get a point across to someone and you can’t quite explain it, give them a story/parable, to get your point across. It truly works!

#Shall-We-Bring-Back-Story-Time

 

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