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AP Capstone Pros and Cons

This post is all about AP Capstone Pros and Cons. The AP Capstone program is a new program that seeks to replace the AP course and exam format. AP Capstone refers to a two-year program where students take AP Seminar one year and AP Research the next year. Students will have completed a 5,000-word essay at the end of the AP Research class. Students work on this essay the whole year in AP Research. AP Capstone is a good thing, as it will allow students to take more involvement in their own education. However, there are some issues with the program and these should be considered before signing up for it.


ap capstone pros and cons

Pro 1: Good coursework

AP Capstone is a good program because it has good coursework. One of the best things about AP Capstone is that it teaches you how to think critically, which is something that college professors look for in their students. It also helps prepare you for college and can help you get into a decent school.

AP Capstone also shows how important it is to take your education seriously by requiring students to hand in an original research project, but there are cons associated with this as well.

pros and cons of ap capstone

Pro 2: Two-year course to develop critical thinking skills

A pro of taking the AP Capstone course is that it prepares you for a lot of things. You have to write a lot, and you have to learn how to do research. You also have to develop critical thinking skills, which can be useful in many other areas of life.

For example, if you want to be a doctor or engineer, or scientist one day and make important discoveries about how things work in the world, then this course will help give you those skills!

There are some drawbacks though: The first year can get boring sometimes because there’s so much reading and writing involved (which might not be fun for people who are not into reading and writing, and would prefer learning about STEM).

Some students say they don’t enjoy being forced into doing so much research either because they’d rather just focus on their own original ideas instead of someone else’s ideas from hundreds of years ago.

Pro 3: Higher-level classes that offer more in-depth learning

AP Capstone has pros and cons. It is a unique course that challenges students to apply their knowledge and skills in a hands-on way. The course covers the art and science of teaching, so you’ll learn how to develop lesson plans, plan for success as a teacher, and communicate with parents. You’ll also learn how to create an effective capstone project based on your interests or career aspirations. This class is offered for two years because it requires more time than other courses do: teachers will expect you to spend at least five hours per week researching your topic outside of school hours, which means this course takes up almost the same amount of time as college classes!

Pro 4: More involvement

Students are more involved in their own learning. Students are more involved in the learning of others. Students are more involved in the learning of the community. Students are more involved in the learning of the world.

Pro 5: More freedom of choice

In the traditional model, you would be expected to take one of the five topics on the AP Capstone course list. However, in the self-designed option, you can choose any topic that interests you for your research project. This gives students more freedom and flexibility when it comes to deciding what they want to study.

Pro 6: Looks good on college applications

Pro 7: Passing AP Research and AP Seminar is easy

Is AP Capstone seminar hard? No, it is not! The pass rate for AP Seminar as of 2021 was 85%. In 2021, the pass rate for AP Research was 82%.

Con 1: You can’t self-study the AP Capstone program | AP Capstone pros and cons

College Board won’t let students self-study AP Research or AP Seminar. This is because there is group work and presentations in the class that have to be completed.

Con 2: Less “college-like” courses | AP Capstone Pros and Cons

The other disadvantage of AP Capstone is that it can be less “college-like” than a standard AP course. As described above, these courses are typically more restrictive and structured.

They also tend to have fewer opportunities for students to explore their own interests or take risks than in regular courses.  For example, there may not be any guest speakers or field trips in an AP Capstone class—both of which are standard features of the average college class. Students who want the kind of freedom and flexibility provided by traditional upper-level high school classes may find this aspect of AP Capstone courses slightly limiting for their learning style (though others might appreciate the structure).


AP Capstone is a good program with some cons

AP Capstone is a good program, but it has some flaws/cons. It’s not perfect. Not everyone will be interested in the coursework or the assignment requirements.

Some more pros of AP Capstone include:

It gives students a chance to work on a large project on their own time and at their own pace. Some students don’t have enough time during the school year to complete all their projects, especially if they’re taking other classes as well as AP Capstone.

Students should also feel free to take breaks from working on their projects whenever necessary—for example, if they’re busy with sports or another extracurricular activity all summer long (or any other time).

Then once school starts again and everyone else starts getting back into the routine mode, those same students can pick up where they left off without having missed out on too many deadlines!

Anyone who wants to participate in AP Capstone doesn’t need any external help outside of what’s available through the class itself—which means no textbook costs either!

Conclusion | AP Capstone pros and cons

The AP Capstone program is a great way to create your own education and career. It allows students to make their own coursework and gives them much more freedom than they would have in a traditional classroom setting.

The only downside is that it can be difficult for students who are used to being told exactly what to do at every moment of their day.


Yes, many colleges recognize AP Capstone. You can find a list of colleges that do here: 

This is not a comprehensive list and there are some colleges that accept AP Capstone but aren’t on that list, but that list shows you that there are a lot of colleges that do accept AP Capstone. Make sure that you are checking colleges that you want to apply to if they give credit for AP Capstone.


Other resources:

If you want to learn all about AP AB Calculus Exam!

If you want to learn all about AP Calc AB!

If you want to learn all about AP Calc BC!

If you want to learn about AP Capstone Pros and Cons!

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If you want to learn about AP Environmental Science textbooks.

If you want an AP Environmental Science study guide!

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