For math whizzes seeking the greatest challenges high school has to offer, advanced math classes push problem-solving skills to the edge.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: The highest level math class in most high schools is AP Calculus BC. Some schools also offer advanced courses like Multivariable Calculus or Linear Algebra.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the most advanced math classes in high school, including AP Calculus BC, Multivariable Calculus, Linear Algebra, Number Theory, AP Statistics, and Differential Equations.

We’ll look at the prerequisites, topics covered, and benefits of taking each course for motivated math students.

AP Calculus BC

AP Calculus BC is one of the highest level math classes offered in high schools. It is designed for students who have a strong foundation in calculus and are looking to delve deeper into the subject. This course is equivalent to a full-year college calculus course and is meant to prepare students for advanced college-level math.


Before enrolling in AP Calculus BC, students are typically required to have completed a precalculus course and have a solid understanding of algebra, trigonometry, and basic calculus concepts. It is important for students to have a strong mathematical background in order to successfully tackle the challenging material covered in this course.

Topics Covered

AP Calculus BC covers a wide range of advanced calculus topics, including limits, derivatives, integrals, and series. Students will delve deeper into these concepts and explore more complex applications.

They will also learn advanced techniques for solving calculus problems and be exposed to a variety of real-world applications of calculus.

Some specific topics covered in AP Calculus BC include:

  • Differentiation and integration techniques
  • Applications of integration
  • Differential equations
  • Parametric equations, polar coordinates, and vector-valued functions
  • Infinite sequences and series
  • Power series and Taylor series


Enrolling in AP Calculus BC has several benefits for high school students. Firstly, it allows them to earn college credit if they pass the AP exam, which can potentially save them time and money in college.

Additionally, taking this advanced math course demonstrates a strong aptitude for mathematics and can enhance college applications. It also provides a solid foundation for future STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) courses and careers.

According to the College Board, students who take AP Calculus BC have a higher likelihood of majoring in STEM fields in college. The course helps develop critical thinking, problem-solving, and analytical skills, which are highly valued in a variety of professions.

For more information about AP Calculus BC, you can visit the College Board website.

Multivariable Calculus


To take multivariable calculus, students typically need to have a solid understanding of single-variable calculus. This includes topics such as limits, derivatives, and integrals. It is also important to have a strong foundation in algebra and trigonometry.

These prerequisites ensure that students have the necessary mathematical skills to tackle the more complex concepts in multivariable calculus.

Topics Covered

Multivariable calculus extends the principles of single-variable calculus to functions of multiple variables. Students will learn about vector-valued functions, partial derivatives, multiple integrals, and vector calculus. They will also explore topics such as gradient, divergence, and curl.

These concepts are applied to real-world problems in physics, engineering, and economics. Students will also gain proficiency in using mathematical software tools like MATLAB or Mathematica to solve complex problems.


Studying multivariable calculus offers several benefits to high school students. Firstly, it provides a solid foundation for further studies in STEM fields such as physics, engineering, computer science, and economics.

Many advanced courses in these disciplines heavily rely on multivariable calculus concepts. Secondly, multivariable calculus enhances problem-solving and critical thinking skills. It teaches students to analyze and interpret complex mathematical models and apply them to real-world situations.

Lastly, mastering multivariable calculus can lead to better career prospects and higher earning potential in fields that require advanced mathematical skills.

Linear Algebra


Before diving into the world of linear algebra, students typically need to have a solid foundation in algebra and geometry. A strong understanding of algebraic concepts such as solving equations, manipulating variables, and working with matrices is crucial.

Additionally, familiarity with geometric concepts such as vectors, lines, and planes can greatly aid in understanding the applications of linear algebra.

Topics Covered

In a high-level linear algebra class, students will explore advanced topics that extend beyond basic algebra. They will delve into the properties and operations of vectors and matrices, learning how to perform operations such as addition, subtraction, scalar multiplication, and matrix multiplication.

Students will also study systems of linear equations and learn techniques for solving them using matrices and determinants.

Other topics covered may include vector spaces, linear transformations, eigenvalues and eigenvectors, and applications of linear algebra in fields such as physics, computer science, and engineering. Students may also have the opportunity to apply their knowledge through hands-on projects and real-world problem-solving scenarios.


Studying linear algebra at a high school level can provide students with a strong mathematical foundation that can be applicable in various fields. The problem-solving skills and logical thinking developed through studying linear algebra can benefit students in their future academic pursuits, as well as in their professional careers.

Linear algebra is widely used in fields such as computer graphics, data analysis, machine learning, and cryptography. By gaining a deep understanding of linear algebra, students can open doors to exciting career opportunities in these fields and more.

According to a study conducted by the American Mathematical Society, students who take advanced math courses in high school, including linear algebra, are more likely to pursue STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) majors in college.

This highlights the significant impact that studying linear algebra can have on a student’s academic and career trajectory.

For further information on linear algebra, you can visit Khan Academy, a popular educational website that offers comprehensive lessons and practice exercises on linear algebra topics.

Number Theory


Before diving into number theory, students should have a solid foundation in algebra and basic arithmetic. Understanding concepts such as prime numbers, integers, and basic operations is crucial. Additionally, a strong grasp of mathematical proofs and problem-solving skills is beneficial when studying number theory.

These prerequisites ensure that students are well-equipped to tackle the complex topics covered in this branch of mathematics.

Topics Covered

Number theory is a fascinating field that focuses on the properties and relationships of integers. In high-level math classes, students delve into topics such as prime numbers, divisibility, modular arithmetic, and Diophantine equations.

They explore theorems and concepts like the Fundamental Theorem of Arithmetic, the Chinese Remainder Theorem, and Euler’s Totient Function. These topics may sound complex, but they provide a deeper understanding of the underlying patterns and structures of numbers.


Studying number theory in high school offers several benefits. Firstly, it enhances logical reasoning skills and problem-solving abilities. By investigating the properties of numbers, students learn how to approach complex mathematical problems and develop critical thinking skills.

Number theory also has practical applications in cryptography, computer science, and cryptography. Understanding number theory can open up opportunities in fields such as data security and encryption. Moreover, studying number theory can also be intellectually rewarding, as it allows students to explore the beauty and elegance of mathematics.

For more in-depth information on number theory, you can This website provides a wealth of resources and research papers on various topics in number theory. It is an excellent resource for students looking to expand their knowledge and delve deeper into this fascinating branch of mathematics.

AP Statistics


Before enrolling in AP Statistics, students are typically required to have a solid foundation in algebra and basic statistics. It is recommended that students have completed at least Algebra 2 or an equivalent course before taking this class.

This ensures that students have the necessary mathematical skills to understand and apply the concepts taught in AP Statistics.

Topics Covered

AP Statistics covers a wide range of topics in the field of statistics. Students will learn about data analysis, probability, statistical inference, and experimental design. They will also learn how to collect, organize, and analyze data using various statistical techniques.

Some of the specific topics covered in AP Statistics include sampling and experimentation, probability distributions, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, and regression analysis.


Enrolling in AP Statistics can provide students with several benefits. Firstly, it can help students develop critical thinking and analytical skills, as they learn how to analyze and interpret data. This can be useful in a wide range of fields, including business, economics, and social sciences.

Additionally, AP Statistics can also prepare students for college-level statistics courses, as it covers many of the same topics. By taking AP Statistics in high school, students can get a head start on their college coursework and potentially earn college credit.

According to the College Board, students who successfully pass the AP Statistics exam have higher college graduation rates and perform better in college-level statistics courses compared to their peers who did not take AP Statistics. This demonstrates the value and rigor of this advanced math class.

Differential Equations


In order to take a differential equations class in high school, students must have a strong foundation in calculus. This includes a thorough understanding of derivatives and integrals, as well as knowledge of limits and basic algebraic operations.

It is also recommended that students have taken a precalculus course to ensure they have the necessary mathematical skills.

Topics Covered

Differential equations is a branch of mathematics that deals with equations involving derivatives and how they change over time. In high school, students will learn about various types of differential equations, such as first-order, second-order, and linear equations.

They will also study methods for solving these equations, including separation of variables, integrating factors, and use of Laplace transforms. Additionally, students will explore applications of differential equations in various fields, such as physics, engineering, and economics.


Taking a high school differential equations class can provide numerous benefits for students. It allows them to further develop their problem-solving skills and critical thinking abilities. By studying differential equations, students gain a deeper understanding of how mathematical concepts can be applied to real-world situations.

This can be particularly useful for those considering careers in fields such as engineering, physics, or economics, where differential equations are widely used. Moreover, mastering differential equations in high school can provide a strong foundation for higher-level math courses in college.


For motivated high school students who have mastered calculus, unlocking new mathematical horizons through advanced classes like Multivariable Calculus, Linear Algebra, and Number Theory represents the pinnacle of pre-collegiate math achievement.

With abundant intellectual challenges, opportunities to burnish math competition skills, and preparation for college-level STEM programs, the highest math classes allow talented students to stretch their abilities to the furthest limits.

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