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Monday, April 21, 2014

The most wonderful time of the year

HA! Just kidding. It so isn't the most wonderful time of the year because it's AP Exam time.

If you are unfamiliar with the breakdown of the two weeks, here it is:

AP Exams are comprehensive final exams that can be taken by students who do or do not participate in Advanced Placement courses (yes, you can take the AP exam if you did not take the AP course). These courses are made to give high school students a chance to challenge themselves with college-level curriculum in high school. Should a student score high enough on an AP Exam (the scale is 1 to 5), they may or may not receive college credit and be exempt from college classes depending on the school.

In my high school career, I will have completed four AP classes. For some this is ambitious and for some this is not much at all. Either way, this was the right amount for me to take considering my extracurricular activities and other courses.

I have taken: AP Language & Composition and AP United States History. I am taking: AP Literature and AP Modern European History.

I am most definitely a humanities gal, but for advice on more science-based subjects, see here for a post I did on it a few weeks ago.

For the first post on AP Exams that I will do, I'll start with AP Language & Composition.

This year's AP Language Exam is on Friday, May 9th at 8:00 AM.

The breakdown of this exam is as follows:
60 minutes of multiple choice (approximately 55 questions based on passages), then 2 hours of writing, where 3 essays must be completed.

To study for it, I would recommend hitting up an AP review book. There is a a plethora of AP review books out there, but my personal favorite brand is The Princeton Review.

Multiple Choice
I know that some people find these to be relatively easy, but I found them rather difficult. There is high-register vocabulary and literary terms to know. I found this Quizlet, and it was so helpful!


Another option is to ask your teacher for their recommendations on how to study. My AP Lang teacher gave us several AP writes throughout the school year, and sent us home with lots of multiple choice packets to complete for practice.

Essays
The only way to learn to do these is to just practice them. You can find sample prompts here. The prompts in the link are directly from the 2012 exam, by the way!

There are three types of AP Lang writes:
Rhetorical - you are given a piece of literature, an excerpt from an article, or some other form of writing and are to analyze the language tools that affect the overall tone and impact of the passage.

Synthesis - you will be given several documents and asked to take a position on a situation given the information. This write takes the most time because you have to go through all of the documents and use most of them (2/3 - 3/4 is the optimal amount. Using all of them is certainly possible though).

Argument - this is the most straightforward of the essays. You will be given an issue, and asked to take a stance on it. Oftentimes, you will be given a quote, but this isn't always the case.

Using literary terms (such as those in the Quizlet above) and high-register vocabulary words can help your score, but be aware that using a word that sounds good is not always the best choice. Unless you are completely familiar with the word and are confident that you are using it correctly, don't do it. It's better to use regular vocabulary and be correct than try to sound smart and end up sounding stupid.

I hope this helps all of you AP Language & Composition students! The exam really isn't that bad if you practice. It's pretty straightforward and definitely doable.

An AP Literature feature is coming up next! Stay tuned ;)

xx, Victoria
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1 comment:

  1. Hello, southern girl. I have read about you and found interested information about you. I also love to coffe. Have good day!assignment help

    ReplyDelete

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xx, Victoria