“The Gold Standard” – AP

Advanced Placement (AP) courses have become commonplace in American high schools.  In AP’s own words, they have become, “the gold standard” in American education. But recently, colleges and universities across the country are beginning to question the academic rigor of AP courses, citing the fact that students who pass the AP exam often do not have a solid understanding of the subject matter.  In fact, a recent study conducted by Dartmouth College indicated such a discrepancy between what the successful AP students were purported to know and what they actually knew that the college decided it would no longer accept AP credit beginning in 2018.

AP Losing Credibility

Why is the AP program losing credibility with colleges and universities?  The College Board, which oversees the program, offers numerous courses for teachers in order to improve their instruction of the material and thus improve students’ performance.  At first glance, this sounds wonderful.  However, upon further reflection, it becomes evident that teachers are being taught how to “teach to the test.”  Merely passing the test – as opposed to mastering the subject  – has become the objective.

At Liberty, we are intentionally teaching students how to think and learn independently.

At Liberty, we are intentionally teaching students how to think and learn independently – with personal mastery of a subject as the primary goal. This is best accomplished through a curricula that emphasizes in-depth discussion, writing and public speaking. Unencumbered by AP requirements, Liberty’s rigorous coursework has enabled its graduates to receive scholarship offers of, on average, $30,000 per year!  The amount of these scholarships far surpasses any credit students might have received with a passing grade on an AP course. And, as other colleges and universities acknowledge the hard reality that Dartmouth has now recognized — that a passing grade on an AP exam frequently doesn’t indicate an equivalent understanding of the subject matter — taking an AP class won’t be perceived as tremendously beneficial in the long run, anyway.

Subject mastery (and the generous college scholarships that result) is just one more reason to embrace classical, Christian education.  It has proven itself in the past, and it continues to demonstrate its inestimable value today!