Required Courses for High School Graduation

What You Need to do to Graduate

In order to earn a high school diploma, students need to complete a variety of different courses with the hopes of becoming knowledgeable and well-rounded members of society. Information about high school courses is discussed below.

High School Core Courses

Most high school students are required to complete a similar set of core courses. However, actual requirements are developed by the Department of Education in the state in which they attend high school. However, most students will need to complete the following requirements:

  • English/Language Arts (3-4 credits)
  • Mathematics (2-4 credits)
  • Science (2-3 credits)
  • Social Studies (2-4 credits)
  • Physical Education (1-2 credits)
  • Foreign Language (Up to 9 credits)

Students also have the option of taking elective courses in an area of their choice. This can be used to prepare students to enter college or to enter into a particular career field. Students that do wish to go on to higher education should check to see what admission requirements are needed and build their schedule based on those.

High School Advanced Placement (AP) Courses

AP courses are offered in a variety of subjects and are allowed in most school districts. Students that complete these courses are taking coursework that is designed for a freshmen level college course. Students can take tests at the end of them in order to earn college level credit, and these exams are administered by the College Board. They are of particular importance to students that wish to go on to college, but they are not mandatory.

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