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Why Everybody Should Take Psychology in High School

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Ever since the first day of ninth grade, I knew I would end up taking AP Psychology before I graduated. And I knew that when I did, it would probably turn out to be my favorite class of my entire high school experience.

As it turns out, that's exactly what happened. I am now a quarter of the way done with my junior year, and a quarter of the way done with AP Psychology. Which, as I predicted, is by far my favorite class. But not for the reasons I thought it would be.

I decided to take the class because it seemed like the obvious thing to do. At my school, it is a course that is known for being an easy A. Everyone who ever took the class gave the teacher, who is infamously easygoing, rave reviews, both on RateMyTeachers.com and in casual hallway conversation. As long as you do your homework and study a little the night before each test, it'll be one less class to worry about. Not to mention the GPA boost because of it being an AP class.

Now I am three months into the year, and third period psych still never fails to be the highlight of my day at school.

Now, here's the catch: I easily spend more time on my psychology homework every night than I do any other class. Not only that, but we take a test at least every other week, and I find myself up in my room, hunched over the Psychology textbook for hours studying before each one. I can't say the same for any other class, including math, my worst subject.

So if it's not the easy A I thought it was going to be, then why do I love it so much? I think the answer is simple: because I can relate to it.

Let's face it, unless you become a scientist, you'll probably never have to worry about Noble Gases, or how to find the mass of NH4Cl that sublimed, after you get your high school diploma. You'll most likely never be asked again about the relationship between the scarlet letter and Hester Prynne's identity. And I can almost guarantee you'll never need to know how to divide f(x) = 6x^3 - 19x^2 + 16x - 4 by x - 2 in the real world (unless you become a math teacher or something).

However, I do know that no matter what field you go into, you will need to know how to understand and communicate with people. You will need to know how to deal with all different types of people, and you will need to know why they act the way that they do. Everybody should know that. It is something that can't be learned in math class by multiplying polynomials, but at the same time, everybody, including mathematicians, needs to know it.

For this reason, I love AP Psychology and I would encourage anyone and everyone to take it in high school, no matter what you are interested in. It may not be the easy A I thought it was going to be, but it's the only class that I really feel like I learn things in that I will actually apply in the future.

And isn't that more important than a letter on a report card?