Attention Incoming Sophomores, not sure whether to take AP Biology? Read this to make your final decision!
By Mark Zocco and Megan Kelleher
All students like to think of themselves as the top of their class. One way of demonstrating this is at the end of freshman year, all of the students ask around to see who will be taking AP Biology and who is not.
AP Biology has a reputation for being a class that is too difficult to take and will make one pull all nighters which is just false information. Do not let the rumors you hear about AP Biology sway your decision whether or not to take the class. The gossip one hears around the school should not be used as a reliable source when making such a decision.
You might be wondering what type of information and from who should you trust when you are in the midst of making your choice for next years science class. Look no further because we sat down with the current and most qualified AP Biology teacher for the high school Dr. Gorton. We then asked him a few frequently asked questions about the course.
“One requirement that the incoming AP Biology students need to have is self motivation. They need to be willing to do the work on their own.” says Dr. Gorton. He also goes on to say that “taking this class does have its advantages. AP Biology will help them learn how to learn. It will teach them what ways for them individually are the best ways to study and learn new material.”
He also said “The major difference from say an honors biology class versus the AP Biology class is the speed and rigor. It is much more rigorous and there is simply more content to cover. AP Biology requires a much higher level of thinking and problem solving then say an honors or level one class.”
When presented with the question “what are some fun and exciting activities that students will be able to partake in?” His immediate response was “We don’t do fun”, but quickly rescinded and followed by “Rather than fun, the students will find the class and what they are doing to be quite enjoyable. They have the opportunity to build a family type relationship with their peers in the classroom. They have the opportunity to investigate scientific principles that they otherwise wouldn't normally have in their other classes.”
The last question has to be the question students are most curious about due to the fact that it is not uncommon to have a bad grade in an AP class. Dr Gorton went on to say that “students need not be shy when not understanding the material. I encourage students to ask questions and seek extra help after school when struggling.” Dr Gorton concluded the interview by saying “this class is like a marathon, you can’t fall behind but you need to maintain a steady pace.”
If at the end of your freshman year you do indeed decide to take AP Biology, you will need to stop by Dr. Gorton’s room and pick up a textbook and a test prep book. With these you will need to complete a summer assignment by taking notes on the first five chapters of the textbook because you will have a quiz on them the first week of school so be prepared! This also gives you an opportunity to go and introduce yourself to Dr. Gorton. Remember, first impressions are very important!
Don’t think if you don’t have straight A’s and have a 4.0 GPA you won’t be successful in this class. If you are willing to put in the time and effort I think that you will fit right in in AP Biology. If you still have questions or concerns feel free to email Mark Zocco or Megan Kelleher at Zoccomark@wethersfield.me or Megankelleher@wethersfield.me.
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Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.