What do you need to know for the AP Exam??

  • Preparation for the AP World History Exam


    The Exam

    55 Stimulus based multiple choice questions: 55 minutes (1 minute per question….don’t skip any!!) 

    3 Sets of short answer questions- 3 questions each. 40 minutes 

    10 minute Break (bring a snack)

    15 minute read over and prep of Documents for DBQ

    100 minutes for 2 essays:  5 minute prep and 35 minute write for each


    Things to Bring:

    A watch (no alarm)

    2 number two pencils with eraser

    A dark pen (black or blue)


    Social Security number

    Light, easy to eat snack


    1.  Use the 10 minute pre-write to analyze and evaluate documents.  Don’t skip ahead and start to write.  It’s all in the preplan!

    2. Each essay counts the same.  Don’t waste too much time on any one essay. Keep track of your own time for each essay. It is not broken down for you.  Write the time your start on your paper.  Give yourself no more than 40 minutes for each.

    3. You can get a good grade, even a 5, without having to correctly answer all multiple choice questions correctly.  Wrong answers are NOT penalized so take a shot at every question.  Multiple choice questions are chronological and get progressively harder. Do the easy ones first and mark the hard ones to go back to after you have PICKED THE LOW HANGING FRUIT.

    4. As the big day approaches, no matter how hard you study, you will be nervous.  Pre-show jitters are normal.  It is impossible to know everything about World History.  The AP exam is an endurance race; even if you limp over the finish line you deserve applause.  Nobody is supposed to get all the questions right.  The theoretical perfect grade is a score of 180, but you can get a 5 with a raw score as low as 117.  (In other words, you can get only 28 out of 70 multiple choice correct and still get a 5 if you write amazing essays!) It’s as if the “A grade” on the AP starts at 65.

    5. The AP test is curved to ensure a certain proportion of high grades every year.  You just have to finish ahead of enough people taking the exam to get ahead of the curve.  Think of the story of 2 guys running away from a bear.  The first guy stops, takes out a pair of running shoes and starts to put them on.  The second guy says, “Don’t be stupid, you can’t outrun a bear.”  The first guy replies, “I don’t have to out run the bear, I just have to out run you!”


    Post Script:

    Study in short increments EVERY DAY the month before the exam! (20-30 minutes)

    Don’t cram the night before!

    Eat a good breakfast the day of the exam!

    Get a good’s night sleep!  Put your review book or text under your pillow!