Physics, Spanish 4, or AP English?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by rayquad, May 26, 2011.

  1. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    I have just been told by my HS counselor that I have a schedule conflict and will have to drop/change one of the above classes. Can anyone give me some advice as to what the Acadamies would rather see? I'm pretty sure I will not change physics. What would you do in this situation? Thanks!
     
  2. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    I'm a junior too, but I would definitely keep physics, especially if you have 3 years of Spanish already and a solid English background. I would hate to have that schedule conflict though, good luck!
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Are you a rising jr or sr?

    Physics needs to stay...AFA is also known as the little engineering school in the rockies. Dropping it and you are hurting yourself.

    If came down between Spanish IV and AP English as a sr. AP English. I say that because if I am correct you are only required 3 foreign languages. You completed that mandate.
     
  4. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    I am a rising senior
     
  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Physics hands down! APENG over Spanish IV.

    Part of the PAR is course curriculum rigor offered at the school.

    Have to ask how far have you investigated the AFA?
     
  6. thealt

    thealt Member

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    I agree. If I had to drop one, I'd drop Spanish 4.
     
  7. InterestedRetiree

    InterestedRetiree LCDR USNR-R

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    I had a similar situation for my senior year. Don't know if it will work for you, but I took the class I had to drop over the summer at my county's community college.
     
  8. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    Dump Spanish and definitely keep Physics.
     
  9. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    I'll also agree to drop Spanish. Most likely you won't continue in it at USAFA if you haven't had that much of it anyway.

    I'd definitely keep the AP English - think that's a necessity.

    I'm not as sold on the Physics as everyone else - I'm assuming it's not even an AP Physics class? If it's AP Physics C, then definitely it would be my first choice to keep. But if it's just basic physics (or AP Physics B), my son had the AP B and got a 5 on the exam and all and still felt that nothing he did at USAFA this year was based on any of that and that pretty much everyone was starting from the basics. If you're concerned about your science skill, then taking it would help you be more comfortable in it, which would be a plus. Plus it will look better on the transcript if you do well in it. But unlike chemistry, it doesn't seem to be as much of a necessity for USAFA. But if you can keep 2 of the 3, I'd agree with the majority here and drop the Spanish.
     
  10. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Kinematics and electricity/magnetism (as well as EE) are both full courses at USAFA, so I'd say a good grounding in physics is important.
     
  11. eagle36

    eagle36 USAFA Alumnus

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    I would say keep whatever you're most interested in. If you're more interested in physics and english, then drop spanish. Si te gusta hablar espanol mas que estudiar ingles, debes asistir espanol. It should really just come down to whatever you'll enjoy more as opposed to "what will look good".

    on another supporting note, say you take physics cause everyone says to and you get a C, that's not nearly as good as taking spanish and getting an A. So don't strictly base your decision on what "will look best"
     
  12. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    Yeah, that's really the trouble. I really enjoy spanish but somehow I feel obligated to take AP english, mainly because my school offers only a few AP classes and I think I should take as many of those as possible
     
  13. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    I've investigated it thoroughly and I have visited USAFA as well. Why?
     
  14. USAFA_Falcon_15

    USAFA_Falcon_15 USAFA '15 Appointee

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    I'm sure Pima means no harm. It just seems like a no brainer to take any type of physics. What will best prepare you for the academy? It'd be like going into drawing 3 without the pre reqs, difficult but possible. But, why even put yourself through that with everything else you have to do 4 degree year. My opinion may be bias because I love physics and math and things of that sort, but that's also a large reason AFA is a good fit. In the end do what feels right, but I'd highly suggest taking physics even if it means you have to drop AP lit. I was enrolled in AP lit, then had a similar situation, gave my AFA counselor a call and she quickly told me that physics is a stronger and more suitable class for my resume than English.
     
  15. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I did not mean to be offensive, the question was posed because the AFA is known as The Little Engineering School in the Rockies.

    Anyone who has delved into the AFA website and read what are mandatory classes at the AFA for the 4 yrs there would quickly get the gist that Math and Science are big issues.

    Anyone, who has investigated to see what the incoming cadets each yr have for SAT or ACT, and PAR would see it too.

    Your GPA will account for part of the PAR, but course rigor does play into the equation. Again, this is why I asked how far you have investigated. If your school offers only 5 APs and you take 0, it is going to hurt you, because in their eyes you did not take the most rigorous course load available to you.

    My remarks were not meant to be hurtful, but to be a wake up call so you can plot/plan your sr yr curriculum that will be the most competitive. Remember you not only need an MOC, but you have to win it! You win it with the highest WCS. PAR is 60% of that score. Hence again, my question of how far you have investigated the AFA process.

    I also say take the Physics and APENG, because college, even the AFA is about foundations that were created in hs. Spanish, as much as you love it, is not going to assist you when you are sitting at the computer writing a 10 page essay on how 18th century literature impacted society in the 19th century. Welcome to college!

    Spanish is not going to help you understand Aero engineering classes, Physics will. Yes, that is the type of class you are mandated to take even as a military history major. Again, sorry if I offended you in the question, but to me anyone who has ever investigated any of the SA's knows they are Math and Science oriented, thus the question of should I take Physics, or graduate with Chem, inferred to me that they did not investigate the curriculum, or the stats for incoming cadets.

    I am known as Janie Raincloud, and I have no issue with it. It is my personality when it comes to researching. I would much rather someone slap me upside my cranium than blow smoke up my arse.

    I also feel that after the pain that posters went through this yr. due to cutting apptmts by @200-250+, the honorable thing to do is not sugar coat it for potential candidates. I believe we need to stress to them that now is the time to use the after burner if they want to be competitive.

    If you want me to say, take Spanish IV and APENG, end with Chemistry and Pre-Calc. Okay, there you go.

    If you want me to say to have a realistic shot, you probably need all 3 that you have in question from an overall perspective. So there you go.

    We all can give an answer you want to hear, but don't confuse that with what you need to hear.

    Your choice.

    Here's reality, unvarnished.

    Avg cadet has an SAT @1360 out of 1600
    Avg cadet has an ACT over 30 (I think 31)
    Avg cadet is in the top 10% rank of their class
    Avg cadet has an athletic participation background
    Many are BSA Eagle Scouts or GSA equivalent.

    Those are just off the top of my cranium.

    Sorry if this came off antagonistic, but again it is MPO, if we be honest with candidates we will accomplish something.

    1. The candidate right now has the ability to change his SR course load to assist them in course rigor.
    2. The candidate will understand why taking both the SAT and ACT are to their best advantage
    3. Will understand that the AFA is not an LAC.
    4. That everything matters when it comes to the appointment.

    Again, sorry, but I just feel we try to be kind and not offend. Dr. Phil once said kindness/sugar coating can also be seen as a form of abuse. It is true IMPO, yessing someone, can do more harm, than saying the truth. Granted I stink at the approach, but yet, I am being truly, brutally honest.

    rayqaud you are new and I want you to stick around. You don't know me from Adam. I am sure you think I am the biggest beeacch that was sent down to earth after reading my posts. One thing on how to understand me is once you get on the path, I will fight and support you. I will be in your corner night and day. I just expect before I get in that corner, you already addressed all of the devil's advocates issues. I will be here for you, if you fight for it, take your marbles and leave because I was showing the under belly is up to you.

    Getting into the AFA is not a sprint, it is an 8 K run. Graduating and getting your career path is a 10K. Making Field is a marathon. Making Flag is a Triathlon.

    The minute you accept that premise is the minute you will be a success.
     
  16. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    Pima,
    Thanks for all the info and advice. I was pretty adamant on Physics from the beginning. I just wanted opinions from people and that's exactly what I got. Whether or not I liked what I heard is up to me, but at least I know now what I should do. Thanks everyone!
     
  17. Packer

    Packer Member

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    It sounds like the physics class in question is regular or CP physics not AP physics. The material typically covered in these classes is fairly basic as they are not calculus based physics. Not taking the physics class will not mean you can not do well in physics at the academy or any college. That said, I agree with others and believe that the AFA will look more highly on the physics class than the spanish class. I also believe that the physics class will help you more than one more year of spanish (apparently not AP spanish).

    I think you must keep your AP english class. As an engineering student years ago, I remember that my advanced high school english/writing classes were the most helpful. It is not all math and science even for an engineer. You have to do the math and science and then communicate your results.

    Good luck.
     
  18. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    Yes it is a regular Physics course, my school does not offer AP physics of any kind
     
  19. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    Exactly what I was trying to say but better said! :thumb:
     

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