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Old 02-16-2019, 04:02 PM
 
Location: East Cobb, GA
926 posts, read 398,932 times
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My family and I are relocating. My children will be 13, 11, and 7 by the start of the next school year. All three of them are classified as "gifted". My oldest is taking honors and PreAP classes. A dilemma has arisen while Iíve been looking at pontential school districts. Iíve narrowed it down to two school districts, and the decision could come down to whether IB is worth it or not. Just come background:

High School A: It's grades 11-12 with about 2,700 students. The school has a reputation for being hyper competitive. Just about every AP class is offered.

High School B: Itís grades 10-12 with about 4,800 students. Although this school performs very well in state tests and other peramters, itís still a desirable school. It offers fewer APs than School A, but it offers an IB diploma.

My husband and I only took AP classes, and our knowledge of IB is limited. Is getting the diploma worth it? If they donít go for the diploma, would taking IB courses over AP courses make sense?
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Old 02-16-2019, 04:48 PM
fnh
 
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Because we have both options open to us, I posed this question to a college admissions officer (U of Chicago), whether AP or IB coursework was preferable, and the reply was that NEITHER is preferred over the other. She explained that students typically do not have a choice between the two, so counselors do not weigh them against each other directly. Rather they want to see a student challenging themselves at the highest level possible offered at their school.

That said (and I quote) the full IB Diploma is considered the highest level academic achievement for high school, but a student having taken and passed AP-level courses and exams is an equally strong candidate. A student in an IB program who does not complete the full Diploma is less competitive. IB course certificates are valued little.
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Old 02-16-2019, 04:52 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
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AP is better known and has a longer history in the US. As mentioned, the full diploma for IB is needed.
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Old 02-16-2019, 05:48 PM
 
Location: East Cobb, GA
926 posts, read 398,932 times
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I’m kind of thinking I like High School B just because it has IB as an option. My daughter will have some time to decide what she wants to do. She’s really driven and hardworking, so she’s certainly capable of doing it. In my internet research so far, I’ve kind of heard mixed things about IB though where it’s a tremendous amount of work with little reward (in terms of college credit earned). It seems like it focuses on writing and research whereas AP mostly prepares the student for the AP exam.
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Old 02-16-2019, 06:00 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
33,161 posts, read 40,591,238 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soccernerd View Post
Iím kind of thinking I like High School B just because it has IB as an option. My daughter will have some time to decide what she wants to do. Sheís really driven and hardworking, so sheís certainly capable of doing it. In my internet research so far, Iíve kind of heard mixed things about IB though where itís a tremendous amount of work with little reward (in terms of college credit earned). It seems like it focuses on writing and research whereas AP mostly prepares the student for the AP exam.
What you've read is correct. The AP course is designed to represent a typical college subject class, which most do with a caveat.

The caveat is that, in the drive to represent a subject, everything is thrown into the AP class including the kitchen sink which tends to overload it.

My experience with IB was short and unpleasant so I will just say that in my opinion it is a monumental waste of time and resources.
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Old Yesterday, 10:49 AM
 
1,841 posts, read 2,865,901 times
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AP and IB are scams. I teach in a school that offers the fully immersed IB program along with a variety of AP coursework.

AP a reflection of college coursework? Tell me a college course where students meet with their instructor 5 time a week for 180 days....I scored a 3 on the AP US History test 20 years ago, received credit for a history class my freshman year of college. It was basically credit for US History up to 1865. For kicks and giggles I took the second part spring semester of my freshman year of college. NOT EVEN CLOSE when comparing work and expectations between a survey US History course in college to what you go through taking AP US History in high school.

IF you can, find a school that offers dual enrollment with a local college / community college. Your child and you will be much better off.
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Old Yesterday, 11:01 AM
fnh
 
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(Am I reading the population numbers correctly? Those are enormous schools.)

In our experience, the difference between AP and IB is less important than teacher and program quality. Luckily for both there are external assessments you can use to gauge that. Look at the participation and pass rates for both schools, and compare how well their students perform when compared to peer AP or IB schools. That is the more important consideration, in my view.
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Old Yesterday, 12:01 PM
 
6,246 posts, read 3,343,547 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenvillebuckeye View Post
AP and IB are scams. I teach in a school that offers the fully immersed IB program along with a variety of AP coursework.

AP a reflection of college coursework? Tell me a college course where students meet with their instructor 5 time a week for 180 days....I scored a 3 on the AP US History test 20 years ago, received credit for a history class my freshman year of college. It was basically credit for US History up to 1865. For kicks and giggles I took the second part spring semester of my freshman year of college. NOT EVEN CLOSE when comparing work and expectations between a survey US History course in college to what you go through taking AP US History in high school.

IF you can, find a school that offers dual enrollment with a local college / community college. Your child and you will be much better off.
It seems more colleges are also not giving as much credit for AP because it doesn't really match the college level curriculum. My daughter's college only allowed a few of her AP courses to count and none in her major field, while they would accept dual enrollment credits. My son's will count either AP or dual enrollment for credit, but requires kids to replace the course they got credit for with a higher level course in the same subject. So none of the skipping freshman year with AP credits.
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Old Yesterday, 12:10 PM
 
Location: The point of no return, er, NorCal
7,098 posts, read 4,430,103 times
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My oldest was previously in the IBMYP, and while we've gone a different route to suit her needs (and my middle daughter), I'd choose the IB diploma program over AP. The high school we're zoned for has a decent selection of AP courses with a fair amount of graduates going to UC (CA) schools.

However, the IB diploma program is the Harvard of college prep programs and is the preferred option of many high-achieving and gifted students and parents. My oldest is considering a boarding school for 10th grade, so the IB school isn't on her radar at this time and the MYP was not challenging enough for her. In any case, given the options presented, I'd choose the IBDP without question.

For the IB program, grades 6-10 is considered the MYP (Middle Years Program), and the IBDP starts in 11th grade with a focus on college-level material and instruction. The workload is considerably tougher when going for the diploma and there are pretty high standards. It isn't just taking classes and completing an exam. IB curriculum is woven into the program and the instruction and educational philosophy are unique and specialized at the high school level, especially higher level courses. There's also a second language requirement and community service requirement. My oldest is in her second year of Mandarin and will continue studying it with the goal to become fluent by 11th grade. She's also working on Japanese. The IB program has numerous resources and opportunities that may suit your kids' needs.

Tips For Parents: AP vs. IB - Which is best for my kid?

The reason we pulled our oldest from the MYP was its lack of flexibility and challenge. The material and instruction weren't engaging and challenging enough, and when we spoke with her first middle school about grade acceleration, it was recommended that we just apply to the IB school for more challenging work and instruction. This seemed to be the answer at first. This is our district's "gifted" program. But we realized midway through that the MYP is just accelerated pacing, not necessarily challenging curriculum and instruction. The only class she really liked was Mandarin. The other classes were just too easy. IBDP is very writing-heavy. Not merely exams and such. It really does prep juniors and seniors for college-level critical thinking and writing. This is where my oldest thrives, and the coursework we chose is very writing focused.

A friend of mine who used to interview for an Ivy League said they really like IBDP grads. They produce college-level work and skills and it shows.
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Old Yesterday, 12:17 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
33,161 posts, read 40,591,238 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnff View Post
It seems more colleges are also not giving as much credit for AP because it doesn't really match the college level curriculum. My daughter's college only allowed a few of her AP courses to count and none in her major field, while they would accept dual enrollment credits. My son's will count either AP or dual enrollment for credit, but requires kids to replace the course they got credit for with a higher level course in the same subject. So none of the skipping freshman year with AP credits.
That's going to vary.

It's been practice for years to not award AP credit (or a course exemption, which is what you describe bed as a replacement) in a student's major.

Colleges have tightened up on both awarding credit or exemptions over the last decade or so, actually longer now that I remember i retired five years ago. It's difficult to get a straight answer why but I believe it's because so many school systems pushed AP at as many kids, including multitudes who really shouldn't have been in the classes.

Greeneville, the schedule isn't necessarily to mirror college but the coursework, in theory, is supposed to. I maintain that many AP classes offer much more material than the comparative college class does. Following on that, if you only got to 1865 in your AP US History class you had a crappy teacher, that course now and always has covered Colonial until today (call that as 2008ish probably now).

As an aside, one justification we were given to switch to an A/B schedule was "Well, it's like college".
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