Thursday, September 04, 2008

Are Advanced Placement Courses Diminishing Liberal Arts Education?

By Paul Von Blum

At this time of year, thousands of academically accomplished students enter selective higher education institutions like mine, beginning their arduous journey toward bachelor’s degrees and beyond. They have stellar grade point averages, high SAT scores, and impressive records of community service. The vast majority also have completed Advanced Placement courses in high school, providing them with college credit and ostensibly preparing them for the rigorous academic work they will face as undergraduates.

Yet, my 40 years of undergraduate teaching in the humanities and social sciences, currently at the University of California, Los Angeles, persuade me that Advanced Placement preparation is overrated and may, ironically, diminish rather than advance the deeper objectives of a liberal arts education.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This information was very shocking to me. The thing that shock me the most was finding out that it diminish rather than add more objectives to your education. Now knowing this I would rather be in a normal class an teach my self more advance work then to take advance placement courses.