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Is Ap Physics 1 Hard

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Okay Seriously Which Ap Classes Are The Hardest

How hard is AP Biology? Tier list ranking for ALL AP science exams

United States History, Biology, English Literature, Calculus BC, Physics C, and Chemistry are often named as the hardest AP classes and tests. These classes have large curriculums, tough tests, and conceptually difficult material.

We put together this list based on personal experience, online chatter, passing rates, 5 rates, and looking at their curricula in depth.

We are not ranking these since their difficulty will vary quite a bit based on the student. For example, if you’re a math whiz, Calculus BC will likely be easier than AP English Literature. But the opposite could be true for another student.

But if you’re considering any of these, be prepared for a tough course!

What Courses Does A Physics Major Take

Physics Major Requirements

  • Physics 141: Mechanics and Waves.
  • Physics 142: Foundations of Modern Physics.
  • Math 150 or 151: Multivariable Calculus
  • Physics 201: Electricity and Magnetism.
  • Physics 202: Vibrations, Waves, and Optics.
  • Physics 210: Mathematical Methods for Scientists.
  • Physics 301: Quantum Physics.

Can I Skip Calculus Ab

You dont skip calc ab, calc bc includes all of calc ab, unless your school somehow does it differently. Calc ab is 1 semester of college calculus, calc bc is 2 semesters of college calculus. BC is the same as AB it just covers more information towards the end of the year. From a difficulty level it is very doable.

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How To Get A 5 On The Ap Physics 1 Exam

AP Physics 1 is easily the most popular AP physics exam. More than 150,000 students take it every year, three times as many as the second most popular physics exam. Butand its a big oneAP Physics 1 has the lowest 5 scoring percentage of the physics exams. Less than 7 percent of the students who take the exam score a 5. If you want to be one of them, read on for our advice on how to get a 5 on the AP Physics 1 exam.

Note: Our advice for how to get a 5 on the AP Physics 1 exam is nearly identical to the advice for the other physics exams. Youll need to grind it out, no matter which course you are taking.

Easiest Ap Classes To Self

How do you Pass your AP Physics Class

Overall difficulty aside, some AP classes ranked as being particularly easy or difficult if you want to self-study.

Heres how the classes broke down by self-study difficulty:

  • The easiestAP classes to self-study are: Computer Science Principles, Psychology andEnvironmental Science. These are also rated as the easiest and leasttime-consuming AP classes overall, so you should be OK.
  • Also ratedrelatively easy to self-study are: US Government & Politics,Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Computer Science A. Human Geography,Statistics, Spanish Language and English Language.
  • You mightwant to think twice about: Seminar, English Literature, and Physics 1 and2, all of which are rated relatively difficult AP exams to self-study for.
  • Thehardest AP classes to self-study: are Chemistry, and Physics C Electricityand Magnetism. These are also rated among the hardest and most time-consumingAP exams, so taking these on as self-study is not to be taken lightly goodluck!

Whatever youre studying, wishing you every success in your AP exams!

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Ap Physics C: Mechanics

AP Physics C: Mechanics is the equivalent of a calculus-based first-semester college physics course. It is most often taken over the course of an entire school year but, in high schools that offer block scheduling, can sometimes be taken during a single semester. This class covers kinematics, Newtons laws of motion, systems of particles and linear momentum, circular motion and rotation, oscillations and gravitation, and work, energy and power while using differential and integral calculus throughout the course.

The course also focuses heavily on science practices and as such, students spend a minimum of 20% of instructional time engaged in hands-on laboratory work.

There are no formal prerequisites for the class, but before taking AP Physics C: Mechanics, students should be prepared for college-level calculus-based work and must at minimum have taken or be concurrently taking calculus.

How Hard Is The Ap Physics 2 Exam

4.2/5AP Physics 2 examdifficultPhysicsAP examAP Physics 2 exam

Correspondingly, is AP Physics 1 or 2 harder?

Because AP Physics 1& 2 are algebra-based courses , they aren’t as hard as more advanced AP Physics courses, though most students find it harder than regular high school physics classes.

Secondly, which AP Physics is the hardest? The hardest AP classes to self-study: are Chemistry, and Physics C Electricity and Magnetism. These are also rated among the hardest and most time-consuming AP exams, so taking these on as self-study is not to be taken lightly good luck!

Hereof, is AP Physics 2 Easy?

Because AP Physics 2 follows after one has already mastered difficult but important skills like proportional reasoning and linearization in AP Physics 1, and is usually taken by students who did well in APP1, most students seem to have an easier time of it in APP2.

What happens if you fail an AP exam?

If you were hoping to use that AP exam to cover a class in your college career that definitely won’t happen with a 1 or 2, and chances are you‘ll need to retake it in college. If you score below a three, you will not receive college credit for the AP course.

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Ap Physics C Exam Coverage

The AP® Physics C Development Committee encourages the following core strengths to be imparted to a student:

  • Physics knowledge
  • Fostering of student attributes and
  • Connecting Physics to other disciplines.

The latter two core strengths are intended to equip the student with his or her social responsibility and encourage collaborations and discussions with other fields. These personal strengths are best honed by the teachers. The target of the AP® exams has always been to the first two core strengths. The physics knowledge includes the concepts, theories, general principles, as well as the techniques needed. In the previous years, the Committee has inclined to test the problem-solving skills more. A huge portion of the exams focuses on perception, experimental investigation, and creativity.

The combined AP® Physics C courses Mechanics, and Electricity and Magnetism is equivalent to the entry level introductory Physics courses recommended to science and engineering major students in most colleges and universities. These courses are calculus-based, and so prior knowledge in differentiation and integration is highly recommended.

Below is the detailed breakdown of the topics in AP® Physics C with their corresponding weight for the AP® exam.

AP® Physics C: Mechanics:

Is Ap Computer Science Principles Hard


The AP Computer Science Principles course is often cited as an easier course and test for those with prior background in computers or simple coding. The course is an introduction to computer science for beginners and does not dive too deep into computer science concepts. Its generally considered as the easier of the computer science AP classes. AP Computer Science A dives deeper into concepts and coding.

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Easier Aps Are Less Time

Some reviewers found Physics was relatively less time-consuming than other courses. From my experience, harder physics courses such as the AP exams tend to split classes into two halves: those that get it relatively quickly, and those that have to persevere and sweat a bit to figure out whats going on.

That theory is borne out when you look at the distribution of time-consuming ratings for Physics 1 , there are two clear groups a neat bimodal distribution for the AP Stats folk among you:

The average scores for both groups of students were pretty similar, you may be comforted to learn if you find yourself studying long hours on physics.

Free Online High School Ap Courses In Wisconsin

Online AP classes are meant to cover more material, in more detail, in than normal high school classes. Students usually need to work outside of class more and have more demanding reading assignments. AP courses give students the opportunity to showcase their true potential instead of breezing through standard high school lessons.

Colleges give credit for AP classes because the course material meets college standards. The difficulty of an AP class differs from student to student. A history buff might find AP Biology more challenging while a bio student might have to worker harder to do well in an AP European History class.

Your first time signing up can feel intimidating, but with the help of an AP course guide, its easy to figure out the right classes to take.

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A Possibly More Reliable Indicator: 5 Rate

Since pass rates don’t actually tell us much, what about the 5 rate? Remember, a 5 is the highest possible AP score . Shouldn’t we be able to find the hardest AP tests by looking at the exams with the lowest 5 rates?

Below is a table with all the AP exams, this time ranked by the percentage of test-takers who got a 5 in 2021.

Exam Name
English Literature and Composition5%

Source: College Board. For language rates, “Total Group” includes all students, while “Standard Group” includes only those students who didn’t indicate they speak this language at home or spent more than four weeks studying it abroad.

*These scores are based on score distribution data from 2020 AP tests. Preliminary data on these AP test score distributions is not yet available for 2021.

The 5 rate is, in fact, a decent way to spot some difficult exams, including AP English Literature and Biology. They both have very low 5 rates .

But on the flip side, a relatively easy exam, AP Environmental Science, has a low 5 rate of 6%. Furthermore, some decidedly hard exams, like Chinese, Calculus BC, and Physics C, have very high 5 ratesup to 23%+ for Chinese!

In other words, just looking at 5 rates doesn’t tell the whole story, though some other articles have assumed that.

This is why the best way to find the hardest AP exams is to focus on the ones with the most material to coveras well as the most conceptually difficult topics, which we will do below.

Looking for help studying for your AP exam?

Do You Have The Math Skills

AP® Physics 1 FAQ: Everything You Need to Know

Weve already talked about how closely math is intertwined with AP Physics. If you havent taken Algebra II yet, its probably in your best interest to hold off on taking AP Physics for now. If youve taken Algebra II but not calculus, you would probably want to start with AP Physics 1. If youve taken or are taking calculus, and youre enjoying the class, then AP Physics C may be a better fit.

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Is Ap Physics 1 Algebra Based

AP Physics 1algebrabasedphysicsphysicsbased

The course isn’t necessarily hard, but the test is really poorly written. It has has the lowest pass rate of any AP test by far. Basically: take AP physics if you have any level of interest in physics. It’s a really fun class assuming you actually like physics.

Also, what is the AP Physics 1 test? AP Physics 1 is the equivalent of the first semester of an introductory college-level course on algebra-based physics, covering the topics of Newtonian mechanics work, energy, and power mechanical waves and sound and introductory, simple circuits.

Additionally, is physics algebra based?

This course is designed for both college and high school physics students enrolled in an algebra based physics course. There is no calculus used in dervining the equations , but a student in a calculus based physics class could find this course useful in helping to understand how similar problems are solved.

What is the difference between AP physics 1 and C?

Both AP Physics C courses are calculus-based, meaning you should have already taken calculus or concurrently be taking calculus while you take either AP Physics C course. However, this course goes into more depth than Physics 1 and uses calculus, making it much more challenging.

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The AP Physics 1 exam is one of the more popular AP exams among students. In 2016, more than 160,000 students took the exam, making it by far the most popular of the four AP Physics offerings. If youre planning to take the exam, whether youve taken the class or have self-studied, read on for a breakdown of the test and CollegeVines advice for how you can best prepare for it.

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What’s The Difference Between Ap Physics 1 2 And C Which Should You Take

Are you interested in taking AP Physics? You might have noticed that the AP program offers more than one physics course. So what’s the difference between the different AP Physics classesAP Physics 1, AP Physics 2, and AP Physics C? We will introduce you to them and help you decide which one to take.

English Language And Composition:

Why is Physics so Hard? (And how you can succeed) in 4 minutes

62.1% is the passing rate of the AP English language and composition. It is a 3 hour and 15 minutes exam with 45 MCQs and 3 reading questions. The MCQs are in two parts reading and writing and free-response questions. It checks your ability on the synthesis, argument, and rhetorical argument.

To pass this exam, students need to focus on critical reading. It will help them understand the argument. Understanding the given statements are crucial to deconstruct ideas using rhetorical strategies.

Also, you need strong writing skills to express your argument. It will be in different forms like memoir writing, essays, current affairs reports. The writing skills should be as fast as you need to write lots of things.

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Why Utilize An Ap Physics 1 And 2 Tutor

AP Physics tutoring sessions are important to succeeding in the subject. In a normal classroom setting, a great deal of material must be covered by your students teacher in order to have most of the class prepared for the subject material that could be on the Advanced Placement test. The rapid pace of this course can leave a lot of students struggling to understand the material, and if your student starts to fall behind, it is very difficult to catch up on their own. Working with a one-on-one AP Physics tutor for AP Physics 1 and 2 can help your student by moving at their own pace. If they have struggled with a concept and need more time to review it, our tutors will provide that additional help. Likewise, if a student wants to spend more time on a given topic because it interests them, our tutors can go into more detail, doing things like making real-world connections.

In addition, your student and their tutor can determine what subjects they need to focus most of their time on. If your student has mastered concepts in thermodynamics but struggles with understanding basic relationships in magnetism, they are able to spend more time on magnetism and less on topics they already know.

  • Fluids: pressure and forces on them
  • Thermodynamics

Ap Physics C: Mechanics And Ap Physics C: Electricity And Magnetism

Both AP Physics C courses are calculus-based, meaning you should have already taken calculus or concurrently be taking calculus while you take either AP Physics C course. This is the main factor that makes Physics C more challenging than Physics 1 and Physics 2.

Additionally, AP Physics C requires that students are enrolled or have already taken calculus.

But what’s the difference between AP Physics C: Mechanics and AP Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism?

Mechanics covers kinematics, Newton’s laws of motion, work, energy, power, linear momentum, circular motion and rotation, oscillations and gravitation. As you can see, these are many of the same concepts explored in Physics 1. However, this course goes into more depth than Physics 1 and uses calculus, making it much more challenging.

Electricity and Magnetism covers electrostatics, conductors, capacitors, dielectrics, electric circuits, magnetic fields, and electromagnetism. Notice there is some overlap with the Physics 2 curriculum, though again, Physics C will be more difficult since it incorporates calculus.

The two topics are sometimes taught as the same course even though there are two different exams, with each topic being taught over one semester. When taught as a single class, Mechanics is usually taught first, and Electricity and Magnetism comes second.

If schools only teach one topic, it tends to be Mechanics, since it builds on material most commonly taught in beginning physics classes .

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English Literature And Composition:

One of the Hardest AP classes, AP English literature, and composition, is a 3 hours exam. It consists of 55 multiple-choice questions and 3 response questions. The passing Rate of English literature is only 60.1%. It requires you to read a difficult text and explain it by writing an essay. Here you need to understand and test fiction, drama, and poetry work.

English literature considers crime and punishment as non-fiction. And it is tough to study. You need to explain literature work in this class. And for this, you need to have the ability to read a given passage pretty well. You have to write an essay on a play or book which you read in your class. But unfortunately, you can’t bring your book to the exam. It makes it even challenging as you need to very focused study to understand.

Thus, it would be best if you fine-tuned your reading and writing ability. It will help you to explain the literary work. If you think you are good at close reading and writing, it may be easier for you. Otherwise, as we know now, it is one of the problematic AP exams.

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