AP represents Advanced Placement, which obviously is attached closely to a higher study standard compared to the degree of difficulty of study in most senior highs in United States. As we all know, the high pressure-studying mode in Chinese schools helps a lot of students build solid foundations in science. The knowledge we learned in our high schools has already helped students gain confidence and lay a positive attitude towards subjects like mathematics, physics, biology and chemistry. Since I personally signed myself up to Calculus BC, Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism& Mechanics and Statistics, it is convincible to share some of my personal experience and ideas of learning these subjects.AP是“进阶学习”的简称,顾名思义,这些课程的难度高于大多数美国普通高中的课程。众所周知,中国高中的高压式教育使得大多数学生打下了扎实的理科基础,尤其对数理化生几门学科的学习态度尤为积极。由于我个人仅仅报名了微积分BC、物理C:电磁/力学和统计这四门学科,所以也就适合浅谈一下自己个人的学习经历和启发

      Compared with other three subjects that I mentioned earlier, Calculus BC is definitely the easiest to learn. Calculus itself is always considered to be ‘the killer of GPA’ in lots of undergraduates’ minds in China, because it involves the memory of complex equations and laws, the sensibility of numbers and transforms and also, one of the most important, the ability of calculation. But AP Calculus BC does not require students to apply knowledge in a very flexible way, it focuses on the most basic utilizations of calculus. When we notice this trait of Calculus BC, it naturally gives us a train of thoughts on how to get a satisfied grade in Calculus BC.与其他三门学科相比,微积分BC是最易学的。微积分本身在许多中国高校学生的眼中可谓是“GPA杀手”,因为它要求学生拥有记忆复杂公式和定理的能力,要有数字敏感度、对变型的观察力以及最重要的,计算的能力。但是AP考试中的微积分并不如高数一样要求学生十分灵活地掌握运用知识,而是将重点落在如何运用最基本的微积分和数理知识。当我们察觉到微积分BC的这一个特点的时候,自然就能启发我们得出如何获得满意成绩的方法

      First, practicing in time is a necessary method of learning anything. But practicing should not be blindly. At the beginning of getting to know integrals, only calculating a simple integral is somewhat operose for me. I realized the necessary of doing more practice. Thus, besides completing the part of tasks (which can be finished in 20 minutes) asked by our teachers, I started to give myself more assignments to make a deeper impression of the knowledge. I would not rush to finish my assignments, because I always think it is very efficient to learn if I can use multiple ways to solve one question. Sometimes teachers provide more than one method to work out an example. During the process of using various ways to solve questions can help me conclude a set of rules about how to solve a question in the shortest period of time. Different individuals have very different habits to do calculations and reasoning, so I think it is needful to build our own system to solve problems better.第一点,练习是掌握任何学科的必要方法但盲目练习并不是个好方法。在学习积分知识的初期,仅仅是计算一个最简单的积分对我而言也难以解决。这也是促使我加强练习的原因。因此,除了完成老师所布置的学习任务(通常在二十分钟以内就能够全部完成),我开始通过额外练习以加深对于知识的印象。我不会过于着急地去完成任务,因为如果我能够通过多种方法解决同一个问题,这才是高效学习的好办法。有时,老师会为同一个例子提供不止一种解决方案。通过多种方式解决问题的过程帮助我总结出一套在最短时间内处理问题的规律。因为不同的学生在计算方式、推理习惯上都有所不同,所以我认为建立一个适合自己解决问题的系统为上策。

      Second, as long as I am studying science, I have a habit of reread notes and examples every week or two. I am no good at memory; thus, it is indispensable for me to review important points once in a while. Besides, after taking all the courses for one subject, I would make my own error correction notebook. I never think it is necessary to record all the mistakes you have ever made. This mode can only be a stupid way to waste time. When all classes were over, I’d like to redo the questions that I did wrong or felt uncertain at the first round. After doing so, a blur concept of which part of knowledge that I was poor at became clear. At last, I would transfer all those selected questions on my notebook.第二点,只要我是在学习理科,我养成了一个每隔一周或两周就要复习笔记和例子的习惯。我不是个记忆性人才,也正因此及时复习才如此重要。除此之外,在每一门课结束之后,我都会制作纠错本。我从不认为将所有自己曾经做错过的题目摘抄下来是必要的。这样盲目的纠错只不过是在浪费时间而已。当所有课上完了,我会将自己第一次做错或不确定的题目再做一边。这样以后,我原本对于自己到底哪些知识不擅长的模糊印象也变得清晰了。最后,我才将所选部分问题誊写(或者剪下来贴)至笔记本。

Third, for subjects like Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism& Mechanics, I prefer to prepare lessons before the class. Well, you might feel it is the same old shit again. I am not an expert of physics, so I always use Princeton as my textbook to prepare for the upcoming class. If you have a specialty in physics, there is definitely no need to prepare for the class at all. A big part of Physics C is based on senior high physics and calculus, so if you have time to review your high school textbooks and ‘just-learned’ calculus would be the best. I personally think some practicing questions in Princeton are more difficult than those in the real examinations. But do not give up practicing those challenging questions, because those questions are perfect materials to test whether you have mastered the class or not. It would be better if you can redo those challenging questions some days later.



      Fourth, using calculator is one of the most important skills for science-related subjects, especially for statistics. For students who spent their first 18 years in China, statistics is a brand new subject, which seems to be not as difficult as calculus but very tedious and requires patience. Most definitions in AP Statistics are explained with subordinate clauses, which means they are difficult to understand let along be used perfectly. A very big part of statistics requires calculators. Calculators are what make the process of understanding quicker. At first, I could not even remember the correspondence between the button and the method, but it got better and better with the practice of free response. If there is no enough time for you to do practice, just write down every single step you use when you do one set of free response. Then try to use the calculator while reading the written steps whenever you have some fractional time.第四点,对于理科相关学科,学会使用计算器非常重要,特别是对于统计。对于前十八年都在中国接受教育的学生而言,统计是一个全新的学科,这门学科似乎虽不像微积分那样难却十分乏味,需要耐心。大多数AP统计的定义都在用从句被解释,可见它们有多难以理解更加别提被完美运用了。很大一部分的统计题目都需要计算器才能解决。计算器也是帮助学生更快速深入理解复杂概念的手段。起初,我甚至无法将计算器上的按钮和某一种算法对应起来,但随着练习简答题的次数变多,这也渐渐好转了。如果你没有足够的练习时间了,就将你做完一套简答题所用过的每一个计算器步骤都记录下来。然后试着在自己有碎片时间的时候,按照自己的笔记步骤练习使用计算器。

      I guess you would feel a little bit challenged when you are in the process of learning AP, but the real AP examinations are not as difficult as you imagine. So, last but not least, be confident. J我猜想你会在学习AP的过程中感到有些小困难,但请放心,真正的AP考试不想你想像的那样难。所以,最后,请保持自信。