Seminars Need a Review

KEIRA BARRY / Associate Editor

AP Seminars– some of the new classes added this year to accomodate for the trimester system– are supposed to be optional review classes for the AP tests in May. The key phrase here is “supposed to be optional.” Many are not as optional as they should be, and this is complicating students’ schedules.

AP Statistics teacher Susan Sebastian pointed out that no AP seminar or prep course (like Statistics 1) can be mandatory. Although teachers are not supposed to teach new material in the seminar, many do and even find it necessary, in order to cover all the content.

For Titans debating taking a Seminar next year, APEL teacher Kathryn McMillan advised that seminar courses can be more easily skipped in courses that are concept based— where you learn how to write an essay or how to understand literature— than those content based— those where you have to learn dates, formulas, and vocab words.

But what if teachers did teach all the course material in two trimesters? If they moved activities like projects and labs to the seminar, they might be able to teach all the material.

In seminar, they could review all the material again and do projects and labs, so that students can really understand the material before the test. And students who excel at the subject or do not want a deeper understanding can skip the seminar without missing chapters worth of material.

This way, seminars could really be both optional and review classes, like we were originally told they would be.

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