Comparing AP and Dual Enrollment

What are AP and Dual Enrollment Classes?

Advanced Placement (AP) courses are classes high schoolers have the option to take to get not only high school, but college credit. These courses tend to have a larger workload and follow the College Board’s standards to prepare you for the end-of-course AP exam. The AP exam determines whether or not you get college credit for the course. These courses often have strict schedules. However, by taking the course with FLVS you get the same course with added flexibility to make the experience all that much better.

If you are interested in AP, FLVS offers several online Advanced Placement courses for both Full time and Flex students!

Visit the following link to view FLVS Advanced Placement (AP) courses available in the online course catalog:

FLVS High School Courses | Online Courses for Grades 9-12 

Dual enrollment describes courses students can take which also allow you to earn college and high school credit for the same course. These courses are generally taken at your local community college or, in some cases, state universities. They tend to have a similar workload to your normal high school courses, so they may be good college courses to start with. Unlike AP courses that go all year long, dual enrollment classes usually only last as long as a semester, which in some ways can be beneficial. For example, you can take two dual enrollment courses each semester! 

What’s the catch? Well, I’m glad you asked! In order to take dual enrollment courses, you need to pass what is called the PERT, or the Postsecondary Education Readiness Test. Now this may sound scary at first, but based on my experience in taking the PERT Exam with Seminole State College, it’s easier than it sounds. In short, it’s an adaptive, untimed test that determines what level you are in mathematics, reading and writing. After it assesses your level in these areas, it will tell you what classes you are ready to begin taking. Depending on what college you are attending, they may also offer an ACCUPLACER test which does the same thing. However, it’s usually only accepted at their college. For example, you wouldn’t be able to transfer the test score to another college to continue dual enrollment elsewhere.

Are They Worth the Workload?

Now you may be thinking, what’s all the hype about taking these courses? Well, there are two main ways to look at it. 

The first scenario may be that you don’t want to spend another four years in school after getting your high school diploma. You could use dual enrollment and AP classes to earn college credit that knocks off years of college education or even earns you a degree while in high school!

Another scenario could be that you plan on going to a good college after high school and you want to make your high school resume impressive to the college admissions. College courses make you more likely to get accepted into a college of your choice. In addition, these courses also open the doors for scholarships, which are always helpful when paying for college!

In summary, not everyone is ready to take on such a big responsibility–and that is okay! There are many ways to enhance your high school resume and earn scholarships. However, if you are interested in taking college courses, be sure to consider your options and remember to not overload your school schedule. Learning comes first.

This article was written by an FLVS Student for News in A Click. News in a Click is the official student newspaper of Florida Virtual School (FLVS), managed by middle and high school students who attend FLVS with support from our newspaper club sponsors.


Florida Virtual SchoolFlorida Virtual School (FLVS) has been leading the way in Kindergarten-12 online education for more than 22 years. FLVS provides a robust, award-winning curriculum to public, private, charter, and homeschool families and school districts nationwide. Learn more at flvs.net.



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