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  • Beverly Brutzkus

Tips for Selecting Your Senior Year Classes:

Updated: May 9, 2023


Not sure what level to take next?

Meet with your current teacher to discuss options that will challenge you, but also set you up for success.

Need an elective?

Look for a subject that will help you learn a new skill, pursue an interest or demonstrate a career goal.

Can’t get into a class?

Be your own advocate by speaking to your high school counselor or the teacher of the class. You can also find an alternative such as a community college class or online program.

Know the difference between high school graduation requirements and college admissions requirements?

For example, you might need two years of a foreign language for HS graduation, but need three to four years to be a competitive college applicant. Remember requirements vary between colleges so do your research.

Developing early-onset Senioritis?


Challenge yourself in core subjects and stay engaged in the learning process!

Here is some advice from Former Dean of Admission at Franklin & Marshall College, Peter Van Buskirk:

Your senior year course selections reveal a lot about your focus and motivation—and can, by themselves, be determining factors in your admission outcomes.

1) Choose courses that make sense to you—move to the next logical level of rigor in each discipline.

2) Commit yourself to doing as well as possible—never settle for “good enough.”

3) Focus on colleges that will value you for what you have done—they will see your body of work academically as having prepared you for success at their institutions.

Remember, Senior year will give you an opportunity to show the colleges what you can do! You want to finish high school strong because colleges you apply to may ask to see your senior year's first semester grades before they decide on your admittance. Also, if you haven't performed up to your ability in the past, a strong senior year, with an increase in rigor and upward trajectory of grades, can help you prove to colleges (and yourself!) that you do have the potential to be a successful student.

Bottom line: Find Senior year courses (and activities) that allow you to discover your passions, use your strengths, demonstrate your interests and build your confidence. This will help you minimize stress and maximize your opportunities when you apply to colleges!

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