If you’re taking AP World History, you may be wondering how to get a good score on the exam. The test covers a wide range of historical topics from different regions and time periods, so it can seem overwhelming.
But with the right preparation and approach, you can maximize your chances of success. Here are some tips to help you score well on the AP World History exam.
Understand the format
The AP World History exam consists of two sections: multiple-choice and free-response. The multiple-choice section has 55 questions and lasts for 55 minutes, while the free-response section has three essays and lasts for 2 hours and 10 minutes. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the format of the exam so that you know what to expect and can plan accordingly.
Since the AP World History exam covers such a broad range of material, it’s important to study strategically. Start by reviewing the themes and key concepts that are covered in the course, such as trade networks, cultural interactions, and political systems.
Then focus on specific regions or time periods that you may be weaker in. Use study guides, textbooks, and online resources to supplement your classroom learning.
Practice writing essays
The free-response section of the AP World History exam requires you to write three essays: a document-based question (DBQ), a continuity and change-over-time essay (CCOT), and a comparative essay (COMP). Practice writing these essays under timed conditions so that you can get used to organizing your thoughts quickly and effectively. Pay attention to the rubrics provided by College Board so that you know what is expected of you in each essay.
Tips for writing DBQs:
- Read all documents carefully
- Identify main ideas/themes
- Use outside knowledge to contextualize
- Use documents to support thesis
- Include counterarguments and refutations
Tips for writing CCOT essays:
- Address all parts of the prompt
- Identify changes and continuities over time
- Provide specific examples to illustrate your points
- Use dates and regions to provide context
- Include a thesis statement that directly answers the prompt
Tips for writing comparative essays:
- Address all parts of the prompt
- Compare and contrast specific examples from each region/time period being compared
- Provide analysis as well as description of similarities and differences between regions/time periods being compared
- Make sure every point you make is directly related to your thesis statement, which should answer the prompt.
Pace yourself on exam day
On exam day, it’s important to pace yourself so that you don’t run out of time. Make sure you have a watch or timer with you so that you can keep track of how much time you have left for each section.
For the multiple-choice section, aim to spend about one minute per question. For the free-response section, allocate your time based on the point values of each essay.
Show what you know!
Finally, remember that the AP World History exam is designed to test your knowledge and analytical skills. Don’t be afraid to show off what you’ve learned in class or on your own. Use specific examples from history to support your arguments, and be confident in your ability to analyze historical themes and concepts.
By following these tips, you can increase your chances of getting a good score on the AP World History exam. Good luck!