Course Registration for the 2020-21 School Year has Begun

Oakton student’s guide to the impending course registration and how to decide which classes to take.

Course Registration for the 2020-21 School Year has Begun

Shevany Moharir, Editorial Board

Even though winter break just ended and there are still five more months until the end of the school year, the process of registering for next year’s classes has already begun. Course registration this year has really snuck up on many Oakton students, especially Juniors, rising Seniors, who will be signing up for their classes as soon as this week. 


Deciding which classes to take is in many ways the most important factor in determining how next year will go. It is also the most difficult decision to make, especially when the current school year is barely half way done. And the decision seems to get harder every year with more classes available to choose from.


The first thing that every student should look at when signing up for classes is which classes are required to take. This generally entails the four core classes – English, Math, History, and Science – as well as gym for freshman and sophomores. All students are also required to have an Art/CTE credit and take Economic and Personal Finance, so it is recommended to take these classes as soon as possible to make room for more classes of interest and so that there is no stress and rush to finish them during senior year or in the summer.


The next thing to consider is which classes you would like to take as an Honors or AP class. While taking difficult and challenging classes is important, an overwhelming course load, such as taking 5 or 6 AP classes, can ruin the school year. Think about which classes you are doing well in this year and which classes you enjoy, and use that to decide which AP classes to take. Remember, while taking classes is important, it is also important to be doing well. So, if the idea of getting below an A or a B in an AP class scares you, it may be a good idea to reconsider taking the course.


Lastly, try something new! There are dozens of electives at Oakton to choose from. Find one that sparks your interest and talk to the teacher about the class. There are also a few new classes being added for the 2020-21 school year:

  1. Combating Intolerance: In this class, students will examine fundamental issues in an economically diverse, democratic society such as prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination and how those factors influence individual and/or government action to combat or promote intolerance.
  2. Teachers for Tomorrow: This class is intended for juniors and seniors interested in a career in education. The broad course curriculum covers four primary elements – the learner, the school, the teacher, and teaching. The course is very flexible and also requires observation and an internship with teachers outside of the classroom. 
  3. Sports & Performance Psychology: Similar to the already popular Psychology and AP Psychology classes, Sports & Performance Psychology provides students with knowledge of psychological factors that affect mental skills, but specifically in sports performance. This includes skills that will enhance performance, make athletic participation more enjoyable, and can be transferred to other aspects of their lives.


With the wide variety of classes available, you will surely be able to find something that sparks your interest. It is also important to keep in mind that when signing up for classes, follow your own interests and not your friends because in the end. Don’t feel pressured to stack up on Honors/AP classes just because ‘everyone else is’ and pick a course load that, while challenging, you can handle and will help you excel.