The number of credits needed to become a high school sophomore varies widely depending on the specific school, the school district and the geographical area. The credit systems in place at some high schools do not necessarily match those at others, so students may find it easiest to contact local educational establishments and ask for a systematic breakdown.
The word "sophomore" comes from the Greek "sophisma," which translates as "acquired skill" or "method." American students in the 10th grade are considered sophomores; a student's sophomore year is also his or her second year of high school.
Credit requirements differ from school to school and state to state. In the Des Moines region of Iowa, for example, public schools require pupils to obtain at least six credits before moving into the sophomore year. Credit systems and the number of credits given per class vary, so students moving from one school to another may need to translate their achievements accordingly.
Sophomores are expected to begin planning ahead for their college and career options before they move into the junior year. Many high schools encourage students to hone their extracurricular activities and take increasingly sophisticated classes. Sophomores receive support to develop abstract thinking abilities and other advanced skills as they prepare for the college application process.