To study effectively for the APUSH exam, students must begin their review at least four to six weeks before the test. (The school calendar conveniently places Spring Break at just the right time for this.) The review schedule on this sheet is designed to help students manage this daunting task. The most important thing to remember is this: the sooner you start, the easier it will be, and the better you will do on the APUSH exam.
How to study:
Start reviewing each unit at least three days before the scheduled review quiz. (See the master review schedule.)
On the first day of study, make sure you can fully define, describe, and identify the significance of the “Key Topics” (from the Exam Study Guide) for that particular unit. If you cannot do this, re-read the textbook, Fast Track, and your class notes on the topic.
On the second day, take as many practice quizzes as you can that pertain to the time period. As you take the quizzes, make a list of any questions or topics you get wrong, and use this list to narrow your studying.
On the third day, study the topics you got wrong on the practice quizzes. After each review quiz, add any questions or topics you got wrong on the review quizzes to your lists.
About two weeks before the final exam, start reviewing all of the potential essays that are listed on “apushwriting,” the course “wiki.” Do not hesitate to look up more information if necessary. This might also be a good activity to do in small groups. The DBQ and essay topics on the final exam – and very likely on the APUSH exam, too – will come from the essay questions you have been examining all year.
In the week before the final exam (and again before the College Board exam), take several practice tests. I will provide some, but these can also be found online, in Fast Track, or in other review books.
Attend as many review sessions and sit for as many practice tests as possible.
It is recommended you do not do too much studying on the last day before the test. Use this day to make sure you have everything you need for the test and to get plenty of rest.
Be aware that each of the review quizzes is a graded quiz and will collectively constitute 25% of your fourth-quarter grade. Therefore, it is imperative you prepare for these as you would for any other quiz or test.
Each review quiz will consist of fifteen (15) AP-style questions and will be worth a possible 20 points.
You may begin the quiz as soon as you arrive in class. Therefore, there can be no talking or opening of notes, books, etc. upon entering the room. The quiz ends exactly eight (8) minutes after the tone sounds.
Each quiz grade will be recorded as follows:
Score of 15 = 20pts Score of 11 = 16pts Score of 4 or 5 = 8pts
Score of 14 = 19pts Score of 10 = 15pts Score of 2 to 3 = 6pts
Score of 13 = 18pts Score of 8 or 9 = 13pts Score of 0 to 1 = 3pts
Score of 12 = 17pts Score of 6 or 7 = 10pts
If you are absent for a review quiz, you must make it up within two school days of your return. This can be done before or after school or during one of my available conference periods. After two days, the score will be a zero.
Review sessions will focus on historical content and will emphasize multiple-choice skills.
You should come prepared to each review session with your own questions in mind. Do not expect a structured review. This is your chance to ask questions about your own areas of weakness.
You must study on your own prior to these sessions. The sessions alone cannot possibly prepare you for the exam.
Sessions will start at 2:35 and continue until 3:30 if there is interest. You are not required to stay the entire session.
Classroom rules apply. Cell phones must be turned off.
The final exam for APUSH will be taken the afternoon of Friday, May 2.
The exam will be comprehensive, meaning it will cover all material since the beginning of the year (Units 1-10).
The exam will be structured and graded in identical fashion as the College Board exam. This is done so students can have a “trial-run” before taking the actual test on May 14.
The final exam will be graded just like the midterm was: “5” earns an A; “4” earns a B; “3” earns a C; “2” earns a D; “1” earns an F. Failure to take the final exam will result in a failing grade. Students should do everything possible to be in attendance on the day the final exam is given.
Taking the final exam in advance of the College Board exam has three advantages:
It has proven to be beneficial to student scores, and can help ease the anxiety of taking the College Board exam one week later. Students will now know exactly what to expect.
The test can then be used the following week as the basis for review, and students can evaluate how they approached the final exam and make adjustments for the College Board exam.
It relieves the burden on students to study twice – once for the AP exam in May and again for a final exam in June.
Advanced Placement United States History Exam given by the College Board
The College Board exam is the morning of Wednesday, May 14, 2014. More details will be provided as the date approaches.
The test consists of two parts: multiple-choice and essay. Each part is 50% of the grade.
The multiple-choice section consists of 80 questions. Students will have 55 minutes.
The essay section is further divided into two parts and lasts 130 minutes.
Part A is the DBQ. Students are required to spend 15 minutes breaking-down the question, brainstorming, outlining, and finally reviewing the documents. They will then have approximately 45 minutes to write.
Part B is the free-response section. Students will write two additional essays in the remaining time (approximately 70 minutes). It is strongly recommended that the student spends at least 5 minutes preparing each essay and 30 minutes writing each. Students select one essay from a set of two covering the time period before the Civil War, and a second essay from two covering the period after the Civil War.
A score of “3” or better will likely earn you college credit or advanced placement.
A score of “3” or better looks great on college applications, transcripts, and resumes.
Students who score a “4” will be entered into the Honorable Mention section of the APUSH Hall of Fame.
Students who score a “5” will be entered into the Hall of Fame and be forever immortalized in the hallway of Room 242 with their picture and name.
If you work hard and prepare well for the APUSH exam, you will feel that much better when you’re kicking back in history class during the months of May and June!
Master Review Schedule
Note: All dates and planned activities are subject to change. An announcement will be made in class or through email.
March 24 through March 28 Spring Break