Essay Tips - Tamalpais Union High School District

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Transcript Essay Tips - Tamalpais Union High School District

General Review Tips


- Focus on topics/areas of weakness first •

Avoid trying to memorize too much

first, specific terms/name/events later Review “big picture” concepts • •

Look at old materials

- Review in-class and reading notes, past essays & tests, study materials from Fall final

Try different approaches

There is no “best” way to review (alone/group, on-line/book/flash cards, practice tests/packets – it depends on your learning style – try mixing it up).

Find a “middle ground”

- Some review better than no review. Too much review is counterproductive.

Be positive

– You have learned a lot this year & the AP exam is graded on a major curve.

AP Exam Multiple Choice Information

• • • • • • • •

55 minutes for 80 questions Each question has 5 possible answers Multiple Choice counts for ½ of total score No points lost for wrong or skipped questions.

Questions get progressively more challenging.

BIG curve on multiple choice Score over 40 likely earns a 3 (passing score) – over 50 likely earns a 4 and over 60 a 5.

Chronology of Questions:

16 (20%) pre 1790; 36 (45%) 1790-1914; 28 (35%) 1915 – 1990 Topic of Questions:

28 (35%) Politics; 28 (35%) Social/Cultural; 12 (15%) Foreign Policy; 8 (10%) Economics; 4 (5%) Cultural/Intellectual

AP Exam Essay Information

• There is 1 DBQ essay you must write on and 4 FRQ prompts of which you must write on 2. You will be required to write one FRQ on a topic prior to 1880 and one FRQ on a topic after that date.

• The 5 total essay prompts will range in their topics chronologically and thematically.

• • • • •

AP Essay Writing Tips READ

prompts multiple times


& make a quick “plan of attack”


needs some brief background on “big picture” followed by an on-topic thesis

Body paragraphs

need to BLEND details with analysis. (Facts & explanations).


is “holistic” – no points “taken away”, just earned. If in doubt, make a guess.

A few AP US Exam review websites: Time lines:

Terms grouped by “era”

General review websites:

Brainstorm significant people, events, themes, trends and/or ideas from 1920-1990

Political, Economic, Social

• Analyze the effects of the Vietnam War on TWO of the following in the US from the period 1961 to 1975: – The Presidency – Youth between 18-35 – Cold War Diplomacy

Discuss, with respect to TWO of the following to what extent the 1960’s were a period of profound cultural change: Gender Roles Music Race Relations

• How did the African American Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s address the failures of Reconstruction?

• Compare and contrast the women’s rights movement of the 1840s-1860s with the women’s rights movement of the 1960s 1980s.

• Compare and contrast the Cold War foreign policies of TWO of the following presidents.

– Harry Truman (1945-1953) – Dwight Eisenhower (1953-1961) – Richard Nixon (1969-1974)

• Analyze the home-front experiences of TWO of the following groups during the Second World War.

– African Americans – Japanese Americans – Jewish Americans – Mexican Americans

Analyze the responses of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration to the problems of the Great Depression. How effective were these responses? How did they change the role of the federal government?

• To what extent and why did the US adopt an isolationist policy in the 1920s and 1930s?

How did TWO of the following help shape the American national culture in the 1920’s? Advertising Entertainment Mass Production

• To what extent does the decade of the 1950s deserve its reputation as an age of political, social, and cultural conformity?

• How do you account for the appeal of McCarthyism in the era following WWII?