AP class showdown

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Which one is the toughest of the tough?

Which one is the toughest of the tough?

Which one is the toughest of the tough?

Ben Chong, Staff Writer

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There are many AP classes offered at East Lake High School, and this article plans to break down those classes on a difficulty scale, cracking down on these classes to show which is truly the hardest class you can take in high school. It is taken into account that not everyone has the same set of skills and some classes are easier to some. But in order to combat this, I will be splitting difficulty into three categories. The categories being: homework/ studying, memorization, and finally problem solving. Homework/ studying is a category that quantifies the amount of work that you need to do in a class outside of the classroom in order to do well in that given class. Memorization is a category strongly represented by history classes due to the need to memorize names and dates. Problem solving is the math/ science version of memorization; you don’t really need to memorize much, but to do well you need to understand the material. The scales are from 1 to 10 and are based on the opinions of myself and students I’ve spoken to that have had the classes.

Class Homework/ Studying Memorization Problem Solving
Human Geography 4 8 1
World History 8 9 2
US History 3 8 2
European History 8 8 2
Government 4 7 1
Economics 1 5 2
Language 6 7 3
Literature 6 5 4
Seminar 6 5 5
Research 8 5 5
Psychology 4 7 2
Environmental Science 7 5 5
Biology 5 7 5
Computer Science 1 4 8
Chemistry 6 7 8
Physics 1 5 5 8
Physics C 5 6 9
Physics 2 6 7 10
Statistics 5 6 4
Calculus AB 5 4 7
Calculus BC 6 5 8
Spanish 1 3 0

 

So, as shown in the table, World History seems to be the most difficult social studies class to take at the school. And Calculus BC is the most difficult math class at the school. The real toss-up, though, is between the sciences, more namely Chemistry vs. Physics. I spoke to my friends who have taken both and the general opinion is that Chemistry just barely eeks out the lead in front of Physics 1, and an even tinier lead above Physics C. This is due to the sheer memorization needed in addition to the fairly difficult problem solving in chemistry, whereas the physics classes are almost purely problem solving with somewhat less memorization. With this being said, Physics 2 is a whole other beast to tackle. As someone who has taken both Physics C and Physics 2, I can say with 100% confidence that the level of understanding needed in Physics 2 is leaps and bounds above that needed for Physics 1. So, the most difficult science class goes to Physics 2, and in a world where most people consider science in general the hardest subject, Physics 2 takes the cake as the most difficult AP class in the school.

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