Students Make Decisions on Course Selections

Junior+Jude+Ratcliff+looks+through+class+options.+Current+junior+schedules+are+due+on+March+22.

Samuel Young

Junior Jude Ratcliff looks through class options. Current junior schedules are due on March 22.

Sam Young, Staff Writer

  Every second semester students must choose their courses for the next year in high school. Many students have trouble picking courses because of all the questions they have regarding endorsements, AP and Pre-AP classes.

An endorsement is when a student takes four years of a specific subject. For example, if a student takes four years of a class, that student would have an endorsement for that class. Endorsements aren’t seen by colleges, but they allow students to focus their attentions in specific areas to better prepare them for college.

  “It started about five years ago with the House Bill 5,” counselor David Ramsey said. “[The government] started requiring students to graduate with an endorsement in the hopes of them being able to do that [practice in the field] when they graduate high school.”

  A dual credit course gives credits for high school classes and college classes, and many students take the Tyler Junior College courses as their dual credit class. These classes benefit many students attempting to complete college as quickly as possible.

  “TJC classes are easier on the content front and are good to take if you don’t want to swarm yourself with AP classes,” senior Joseph Adams said. “Also, for kids who don’t want the stress of AP and are planning to go to local schools for college, dual credit offers the perfect medium.

  Pre-AP courses are for students preparing to take a AP class, and Pre-AP is more difficult than a regular class but is not as rigorous as an AP class. Pre-AP courses are highly recommended before taking AP courses but are not required.

  “Most students coming into high school come from junior high, so they don’t know how to study and don’t know how to work,” Adams said. “Pre-AP courses really help you get ready for the work you have to do in AP courses.”

  AP courses help with a student’s class rank, credits  and college applications. 

  “I took my AP courses for multiple reasons,” Adams said. “One of the main reasons is that having an introduction to the subject matter will help me in college.”

  There will be several new classes available next year including Russian, computer maintenance, AP music theory, applied music for choir students and EMT health.

  “We’re anticipating some of the students to leave a couple of periods early,” Ramsey said. “[This will allow you to] go to Tyler and do some training at UT Health.”

These classes are available only for specific grade levels. The EMT course will be for seniors only, the music theory class will be for juniors and seniors only, and Russian will be for juniors and seniors only.

  “We have deadlines for each grade level,” Ramsey said. “So each student must make sure they are following their deadlines.”