The Struggle of Taking an AP Course Online
By: Chase Rovero
As the end of the school year approaches, remote students are given a chance to reflect upon their academic success during this unprecedented time. While course selection was limited to fully remote students, there were some optional Advanced Placement courses for students to challenge themselves with. And a challenge it was, as I decided to enroll in AP Biology with the pressure of managing the workload and ensuring my understanding of each passing unit. Not to mention, we AP students registered to take the AP exam in May had to balance our day-to-day workload with taking practice tests and writing essays. From personal experience, knowing the exam loomed in my future was not a comfortable circumstance, as all of the information acquired from day one would be put to the test on this exam. While the review assignments served as somewhat of a glimpse into the future, I did feel a chip on my shoulder as the countdown till May neared its end. I can recall pondering the events in the last few classes leading up to the exam and how I felt so uncertain and unconfident in myself. However, despite the encouraging words from my teachers, I couldn’t help but question my intellect and academic ability as anxiety contaminated my brain. For most students, walking into an exam with the expectation of failure will not serve you well in the long run, as many find themselves second-guessing their answers or questioning their memory. One thing is for certain though, fear and anxiety can easily interfere with one’s academic success. I’m a prime example of such behavior, as I ended up making a lot of mistakes based on fear and anxiety. And while I did lack confidence heading into the exam, I ended up finishing with a better understanding of what college exams will be like. Once exam day concluded, not only did I feel a weight lifted off of my shoulders, but I was also thankful for the opportunity to test myself against such a complex assessment at a young age.
In hindsight, while there are indeed trials and tribulations associated with an online Advanced Placement course, there is also a beneficial experience that will better prepare students for their academic futures. I can now shift my focus towards Junior year, where I will be back to in-person school, knowing what to expect from the AP courses I will be enrolled in. Depending on the student and their motivation level, one should definitely consider taking an online AP course if the opportunity ever presents itself. While some might not be up for the task, it is possible to successfully complete and should never be feared.