4 Answers for Parents About College-Level Classes in High School

Many high schools are already beginning course scheduling for the next academic year.
And teens will often have several types of classes to choose from, including college-level classes such as Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and dual enrollment courses.
[Discover the difference between AP and IB classes.]
Parents, along with counselors and teachers, can and should help with the course selection process, says Kate Van Pernis, a school counselor at Southwest High School in Minneapolis. But students need to be the project managers and ultimate decision makers, she says.
But parents with children who have never taken college-level classes before may be wondering if these classes would be a good fit for their teen. The following answers to common questions may help parents steer their child in the right direction.  
1. How much more rigorous are college-level classes compared with honors and regular courses? College-level classes involve a lot more independent learning and study time outside of class, just like in college, says Meredith Sherrill, a school counselor at Myers Park High School in Charlotte, North Carolina. 
Van Pernis says counselors at her school encourage students to sign up for the most challenging classes they think they are going to be successful in. 
And while she thinks students should challenge themselves with their course selection, students should consider balance and not bite off​ more than they can chew – it’s not great to be in all rigorous classes, but getting C’s and D’s. ​ ​
But parents shouldn’t underestimate their average student who wants to …