Before you begin, take a moment to familiarize yourself with this page and its link to my home page. I have laid out strategies, advice and tips for each of the three sections of the A.P. U.S. History exam. It is one of the most difficult AP exams because it requires you to possess broad knowledge of US history and to be able to analyze events in U.S. history in your writing.
The exam is divided into two sections. 50% of your score is determined by section one, the multiple choice exam. Its 80 questions cover U.S. history from exploration to the present, but most of the questions will be from the 19th century. The breakdown is as follows:
- 16% from explorers through 1789
- 50% from 1790 to 1914
- 33% from 1915 to the present
The college board breaks the questions down into the following categories:
- 35% on public policy and political behavior
- 35% on social change
- 15% on diplomacy and international issues
- 10% on economic developments
- 5% on intellectual and cultural issues
50% of your score is determined by section two, the writing section. This section is further divided into the Document Based Question (DBQ), and two Free Response Questions (FRQ). The DBQ prompt can come from any period of U.S. history. The FRQ prompts are divided into two broad periods. The first set of questions will be on U.S. history up to and including the Civil War. The second set of questions will be on U.S. history from Reconstruction to the present. You must choose one question from each set.
Your composite score range will be from 1 to 5.
|AP Score||AP Qualifier||Probability of Receiving Credit|
|Extremely Well Qualified||Yes|
|Qualified||Probably (most cases)|
According to the College Board, 50% of the 140,000 students that take the exam received at least a "3".