Only four weeks into the new semester, and students have already been asked to lay out the entirety of next year. Without a plan, selecting your classes can become more difficult than it should be, but with a little bit of consideration, you can sign up for the best classes that are the right fit for you. Here are a few suggestions:
One thing is certain: four of your classes are more or less selected already. Taking a literature, math, science, and social studies class is required each year (unless you have been able to double up on a subject in previous semesters). Personally, I have always taken advanced courses, but it is ultimately up to you to decide whether or not that will be your perfect fit. While I encourage you to challenge yourself, only you know your learning abilities best. When it comes to class selections, there is a scale that we must be careful not to tip too far in either direction: don’t sign up for classes that will be easy in order to avoid work, but don’t sign up for the courses that will stress you out to the moon and beyond. Know your limits, but also see where you can push yourself to grow in ways you didn’t think you could before.
Electives and CEC
This is where the fun comes in. Elective classes are your chance to explore the subjects that interest you most and are an opportunity to discover topics that you would have never considered previously. With that being said, find what peaks your interest and pursue it. If you enjoy music, you can take Band, Chorus, or Music Theory. If writing is up your alley, there are Writer’s Workshop, Journalism, and even AP Literature classes available. If fitness is your forte, there are a number of P.E. classes in addition to Weight Training. On top of the number of elective courses offered at Northgate, there is also an entirely different selection of classes offered at CEC. If there is one thing that I regret about my own class choices, it would be that I did not take advantage of what CEC has to offer. From String Techniques to Welding to Nursing, CEC is able to provide unique experiences for students wishing to pursue possible careers. Another benefit to a selection of CEC programs is that you can come out of the class with a certification in the field, making it easier to find jobs directly after high school. So between Northgate and CEC, there is bound to be a list of classes that fall in line with your interests.
AP vs Dual Enrollment
One of the most commonly asked questions is: what is the difference between AP classes and Dual Enrollment? Unfortunately, the answer is that it depends on what kind of student you are. The main incentive to take AP classes is the chance to earn college credit if you are able to pass the AP exam at the end of the course. On the other hand, Dual Enrollment allows students to take college courses while actually on the nearby college campuses, so for some, the college schedule (and the fact that you don’t have to take a test to receive credit) is a better fit. Additionally, both AP and Dual Enrollment courses are weighted, so they can assist your GPA in the long run. There are pros and cons to both academic decisions, but the choice ultimately comes down to the needs and desires of the one looking to take the class.
While this may give you a general sense of what classes you want to sign up for, here is a selection of what other students have to say about class registration.
Junior Mia Fisher says, “My top three favorite classes are American Literature…Zoology…and Physics. I liked these three mainly because of the teachers. They captivated me with their bubbly personalities and helped me do my absolute best! A class is only as good as the teacher. I have a little advice for class registration. Don’t go by what everyone around you is doing, do what works for you. If you need help, talk to the administration.”
Junior Jake Trionfo adds, “[I enjoyed] AP Physics, AP Stats, [and Work Based Learning]
I would say to do what needs to be done so you can excel, but have fun too.”
Senior Bethany Brandon explains, “[My favorites classes were] Drawing, AP Physics, and AP Human Geography. Take the classes that you will enjoy, and AP is always worth the little extra work, you will learn so much more.”
Senior James Campbell says, “[I liked] Audio Video Television and Film [and] Programming at CEC, and Writer’s Workshop. My advice for class registration would be to sign up early and on time to make sure you get the classes that you want.”
Senior McKenzie Jackson adds, “[I loved] Advanced Physics because I…got a basic understanding of how things work, Anatomy and Physiology because my teacher was awesome and explained in detail what each system of the body was, what was included in that system, and how each part of that system worked on both a general and microscopic level, and CEC’s Essentials of Healthcare, because I saw things I would have never seen in person without being in college. I job shadowed real medical staff at Piedmont Hospital in Newnan and got an understanding of…what that medical staff sees and does on a daily basis. My recommendation for class registration is to always challenge yourself in classes you have an interest in doing for a career. You will learn more than if you just took a class to fill space. Or take a class you might even think you’d have an interest in so that you can narrow down and expand your options to have an idea of what you want in life.”
Class registration shouldn’t be stressful, so hopefully, with the right direction, the classes you sign up for next year can be some of the best that you have ever taken.