Languages

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Daddy_12, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. Daddy_12

    Daddy_12 Member

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    Hello, I was wondering what I should do for my forgin language next year. This year, as a sophomore, I am in honors French 3. And next year I will be in AP French 4 as a junior. Should I stop my forgin language after this year, go to AP French 4 and stop junior year, or should I go all the way and take AP French 5. I would go all the way, but I don't know if all of the that work would be worth it? Would it really make my app THAT much better
     
  2. Jason922

    Jason922 Future USNA Candidate '20

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    It would definitely look good on your application.
     
  3. riveranduin

    riveranduin row well and live

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    This is the question that lots of people ask themselves on their application to the academy. My suggestion is to take that extra year of a language. It may make it easier to fulfill the language requirement that will exist if you attend the academy. It also shows initiative that you've taken five years of a subject. Obviously if it's a struggle for you now to maintain good grades in the class it might be to your advantage to stop, but the academy does look favorably upon good performance in foreign language classes. The attitude you have right now toward this makes it sound almost as if you think hard work is only worth it for a tangible benefit. If that's the attitude you're coming at USNA with, you may want to reconsider if the Academy is the right place for you.
     
  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Another Perspective

    I don't disagree with the advice offered to this point but thought I might point out another perspective. First I definitely agree you should be taking a language and that you should continue in French but perhaps not the AP course. What other languages are offered at your school? French is not a critical language in the military although French speakers can be helpful. If Arabic or some other language that is critical is offered at your school then I might pursue that after completing French 4. If not, then you should continue with French, or maybe pick up some Spanish. Nothing wrong with being multi-lingual (as opposed to bi-lingual).
     
  5. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Russian (seems to be coming back in political "vogue"), Spanish ... French, Latin, German, seem to have lesser market value.

    kinnem's hit this right on, imo.
     
  6. usnabgo08

    usnabgo08 USNA 2008/BGO

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    There has been some great advice about languages, but whether you take a 5th year (USNA highly encourages 4 years of foreign language) depends on what the rest of your high school schedule looks like. All else equal, another language or additional study of your current language (discussed above), would be beneficial. If you drop a language, what gets added? Are you scheduled to take Chemistry, Physics, advanced math classes? Is there an additional engineering class that your H.S. offers?

    An additional relevant science/math course that replaces a 5th year language MIGHT be more beneficial, depending on what it is.
     
  7. Daddy_12

    Daddy_12 Member

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    Yes I will be in very hard classes, by senior year I will be in AP chem/AP lit/AP history/AP calculus/ Religion/ and AP French 5 if I decide to take it. I am also curretly in Pre-engineering, and will br taking more advanced engineerig as i grt older. I really appreciate th input everybody. Thanks!
     
  8. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    Aw c'mon. That seems a little harsh on the kid. :smile:

    If one actually wants to be admitted into a service academy, it's not uncommon to do a little academic posturing; i.e. taking a course that you think will help your academic resume even if the subject matter is not one for which you have great passion. The ability to labor through something that doesn't excite you (and still do well at it!) may actually serve you well at the academy. I hated "Seamanship" and "Celestial Navigation" - both boring and cookie cutter courses. Yet, I did fine in both.

    If you're taking the right courses and doing well - I don't think it's really necessary to psychoanalyze one's motivations for taking those courses.
     
  9. nuensis

    nuensis USNA 2016

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    AP Physics C, AP Chemistry, AP Calculus BC, AP English, and AP World History/AP U.S. History.

    If you have not taken or planned to take the above classes, I would definitely recommend taking them over the fifth year of French.

    All of those classes will help you validate things. If you can get a five on those AP tests, you will most likely validate the classes here. Validation frees up your schedule and opens up some interesting opportunities for VGEP, language minors, and double majors.

    The classes are difficult, yes. But if anything, struggling through them will teach you how to study, how to deal with time management, when to get help, and when to trade what you want to do with what you need to get done.

    If you have taken or plan to take the above classes and still have that extra empty block, I'd recommend a computer science class. If that doesn't suit your fancy, pick something you like; it really doesn't matter if you already have the above AP classes under your belt. If you like French, stick with French. Nothing wrong with that.
     

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