5 reasons why we think you should do AP Maths

People often ask us why doing AP Maths is a good idea, so here are our 5 top reasons.

1. AP Maths, no doubt, has a positive impact on your Core Maths results.

Ask any one of our students and they will lay testament to this. AP Maths challenges you to learn mathematical concepts and theories ahead of your time. This seems to make your normal school Maths seem a bit simpler and helps build your confidence and improves your general mathematical ability. You are able to think about Maths from a broader perspective which means you can apply more lateral thinking when it comes to Core Maths. For these reasons past students regularly mention that AP Maths does help improve your Core Maths.

2. When candidates are being chosen for acceptance into university, AP Maths, although it doesn’t give you points, seems to be a helpful differentiator of candidate selection.

In South Africa, we have an undersupply of higher education institutions and thus seats are limited at top universities. Differentiating yourself from the rest of the candidates is important and significant. Although doing AP Maths at a school level does not grant you any points towards your university application there is no doubt that it helps build a case for your acceptance into your chosen degree, diploma or course over other candidates at the same level.

3. The likelihood of you getting through any of the degrees that require Mathematics is greatly increased.

University Maths is difficult. The difficulty of the content increases considerably from school to university and the style of teaching goes from ‘hands on’ to ‘You are an adult now, ensure that you keep up!’. This is a big change for most students and one that leaves some students playing catch up from day 1.

Doing AP Maths at a school level helps soften this sudden culture shock by helping to create a buffer of content that has already been learnt at a school level. This gives you a slight advantage in the first year and allows you a bit more space to breathe and settle as you adjust to the heavy varsity life which, can increase your chances of making it through Maths in your first year and hence increases your chances of excelling and successfully completing your chosen degree. Degrees where Mathematics is necessary (just to name a few): all engineering degrees, any subject where you will eventually use statistics, medical and science degrees, Business Science and Actuarial Science.

4. The dreaded statistics!

Statistics is one of the most feared subjects, yet it really shouldn’t be! Our core AP Maths programme involves all our students studying Statistics from Grade 10 to Grade 12. We make this a non-negotiable because all students going into higher education will at some point have to use statistics in their research, regardless of field. Thus, getting insight and familiar with key topics in Statistics is really helpful and is yet another reason to do AP Maths. In fact, I would go so far as to say that it is enough of a reason to study AP Maths and not even worry about the results you get!

5. Pressure makes diamonds.

This may sound clichéd but all of us at Advantage Learn believe this to be the firm truth. AP Maths is in no way an easy subject and it will put a lot of pressure on you! A great reason for you to do AP Maths is due to the strong work ethic it forces you to develop. All too often the top Mathematics candidates at high school settle into bad habits and work ethic because they are able to cruise through the content. This creates a false sense of security that Maths is easy. It certainly isn’t, even for a bonafide mathematical genius!

Thus putting yourself under pressure and studying AP Maths will force you to step up your game and work hard at something that isn’t necessarily easy. This lays a strong foundation for further education and for life.

So those are my top 5. If I had my way, every student that is looking to go to university should study towards an AP Maths level before entering their tertiary education career. Yes, it’s not necessary but it sure is helpful. Click here to read more about how we do AP Maths at Advantage Learn.

This article was originally published on 21 Oct 2015

About the author
James Lees

Some of you may already know that I am Managing Director of Advantage Learning Technologies, a company which proudly owns and runs AdvantageLearn.com. AdvantageLearn.com specialises in providing specialised and innovative learning solutions to secondary education level learners.

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