Foreign Language vs. STEM Courses

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by USNA-Hopeful-2021, Jan 25, 2015.

  1. USNA-Hopeful-2021

    USNA-Hopeful-2021 Member

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    Soo, I have to register for classes for the 2015-2016 school year next week, and I had a few questions regarding classes. On the Admissions page of USNA's website, it says, "at least 2 years, preferably 4 in a single foreign language," but I have no interest in taking another 2 years. So, I'm wondering, will it hurt my chances too much if I take a 3rd science course instead of a 3rd year of Spanish next year?
     
  2. usna.hopeful19

    usna.hopeful19 Member

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    I recommend the science course. I was in your position and only took 2 years of world language (no way I wanted to take more). I did, however have 4 years of STEM and I got my appointment!
     
  3. payitforward

    payitforward Member

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    What's the plan for courses in senior year? It's not like you can easily go back and take that 3rd year of Spanish if you skip a year. Is there another high level science or math course available to take senior year? To me, "at least 2, and preferably 4" sounds like 3 is better than 2 but not as good as 4. The 3rd year of science courses will still be an option in senior year, most likely, but the 3rd year of Spanish would be a long-shot to ace.
     
  4. mdn18

    mdn18 Member

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    Why not just take both? In HS I did 5 years of Spanish and took physics 1+2. But as a freshman MechE (not at an Academy) reapplicant, I think a Math or Science course will be better in the long run.
     
  5. USNA-Hopeful-2021

    USNA-Hopeful-2021 Member

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    So for my limitations of classes, I have 8 periods, and I am planning on taking AFJROTC III, AP Lang, AP US History, AP Calculus A/B, Digital Engineering, Astronomy I, and AP Chemistry, with a concurrent enrollment Physics class. However, that would leave me with limited science classes senior year, so I might push Astronomy to senior year and take Spanish III next year.
     
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  6. mdn18

    mdn18 Member

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    Maybe I'm biased because of my major, but I wish I had taken more science classes in HS. Spanish 5 and the AP test were great, and it filled the language requirement for my school, but if you are thinking about a STEM major (at any school), I would choose science or math any day. I took Spanish all 5 years because I enjoyed it and was good at it. HS AP classes might've helped me prepare, but it's just amazing how much harder everything is at the college level. You're still in HS - take a class that'll help you prepare, but also do something you enjoy.
     
  7. USNA-Hopeful-2021

    USNA-Hopeful-2021 Member

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    This part especially seems to resonate with me, as it seems that all my friends and I seem to worry about is admission to our colleges of choice, even though we are only sophomores. It appears that we are all too obsessed with our futures to worry about the present. That's not to say I still won't strive to go to the Academy, but that I need not worry as much. It doesn't help the whole Spanish thing that I've had a different teacher every semester, and 2 of them have quit. Anywho, I'm still undecided as to what to take, as I already plan on taking 4 STEM courses next year, which is half my course load. Then again, im taking 4 STEM courses this year, and I know for sure that I plan on majoring in engineering.
     
  8. 1964BGO

    1964BGO Member

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    OK, folks, a big clue: the service academies started as engineering schools with leadership and professional technical training - and in spite of their more diverse majors, they still have strong tendencies towards the STEM side of the aisle. USNA for one gets nervous when a class gets too close to the 65% STEM/35%Liberal Arts mix. It is great that you are still a couple of years away from your senior year and have gotten most of your math/science courses accomplished so you can take some of the courses you bypassed earlier. However, do you have a local college that might be offering some more advanced STEM courses? One thing to keep in mind is that while USNA does not offer graduate level courses, it does offer midshipmen who have completed their baccalaureate requirements early the opportunity to pursue a graduate degree through one of the many universities in the Washington/Baltimore area.
     
  9. 2018midmom

    2018midmom Member

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    As a mom of a current plebe, taking all the math and science you can before getting to the Academy provides the opportunity to possibly validate courses and as 1964BGO above stated get a jump on a grad degree but also to possibly have less stress when you are taking plebe year courses. Math and science at a lot of high schools may not be comparable to the "fun" of plebe year calc and chem so being more familiar with these subjects can be helpful.

    Just my observation/opinion.
     
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  10. USNA-Hopeful-2021

    USNA-Hopeful-2021 Member

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    Yes, I am enrolling in a concurrent enrollment program with the local community college, in which I plan on taking higher level Physics, since my high school does not offer AP Physics.
     
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