Larry Krieger, my friend, colleague, and APUSH master extraordinaire, has just released two new guides for the 2021 AP US History Exam.
The Insider’s Fast Review is a general overview of the exam content, boiled down to the absolute essentials:
The Insider’s Fast Review is an efficient review based upon the AP US History Course and Exam Description (CED) book and authentic APUSH questions and answers. It is an EFFECTIVE review of the key historic developments and patterns in all 9 required time periods. The Fast Review is designed to live up to its title. It provides you with a carefully organized presentation of the key developments, trends, and patterns you must know to achieve a high score on your APUSH 2021 exam. There are no fun facts and trivial topics. Everything in Fast Review is taken from the CED and APUSH questions and answers.
The second book, Doing the DBQ, focuses exclusively on how to write the Document-Based Question:
The Insider’s Doing the DBQ is a bold new approach to doing the DBQ. This book provides you with 11 practice DBQs. Each DBQ is followed by an annotated essay enabling you to pinpoint how the essay fulfilled rubric requirements. The annotated sample essays are based upon insights from featured essays on AP Central and from best practices recommended by experienced DBQ readers.
If you’re taking the exam in a couple of weeks and need to know what figures/movements/terms to focus on, Larry Krieger is your guide. He knows the exam inside-out, backwards and forwards. In fact, you could probably replace the entire APUSH-writing team at ETS with Larry alone, and no one would know the difference!
I am happy to announce that The Critical Reader AP® English Literature and Composition Guide is now available on Amazon.
The book is aligned with the redesigned (2020) Course Description, including the updated 6-point essay rubric, and covers the multiple-choice reading as well as the three essays. It also features many passages drawn from the same works, or by the same authors, as texts that have appeared on previously administered exams.
-A complete chapter on each major concept tested
-Numerous sample questions covering both poetry and prose, and accompanied by detailed explanations
-Nine sample student essays (three for each question type), with in-depth scoring analyses
The electronic version of my AP® English Language and Literature guide is now available on Amazon.
My and Larry Krieger’s mini-guides for the condensed 2020 online AP tests are now available!
Because of a technical issue that resulted in the print version of Larry’s book being delayed on Amazon by nearly a week, Larry asked me to post the entire book as a free PDF download on this site. Click here to access it (do not add to cart; scroll down and click on the link in the description).
If you would like to order a print copy, the book is now available on Amazon as well.
Unfortunately, Larry realized that he would not have enough to time to complete the AP Psychology guide and decided to let that project go.
For logistical reasons, I decided to combine the English Language and English Literature sections into a single print book which, as of 4/25, is available only on Amazon.
I’m currently in the process of trying to get the manuscript formatted so I can make the book available in electronic form. I’m hoping that will happen by mid-week.
I’m also currently trying to determine whether The Critical Reader will be able to stock the book as well, given delayed shipping times.
I’ll post an update as soon as I have more information.
In the past few days, the College Board has released important information regarding the 2020 AP exam schedule.
Tests will consist of free-response questions only; last approximately 45 minutes each; and be administered online from May 11-22nd, with additional makeup dates in June.
After some discussion with my SAT vocabulary book co-author and APUSH expert extraordinaire Larry Krieger, I’m happy to announce that we’ve decided to release condensed (approximately 50-page) AP guides that specifically target the 2020 online exams. We’ll aim to make them available within the next 2-3 weeks, sooner if possible.
Our current plan is as follows: I will be covering the AP English Language and Literature exams, and Larry will be handling APUSH.
The 2020 dates and questions for these exams are as follows:
- AP English Literature (May 13, 2pm EST): Prose Analysis essay (on the full exam, Free-Response Question #2)
- AP English Language (May 20, 2pm EST): Rhetorical Analysis essay (Question #2)
- APUSH (May 15, 2pm EST): Modified DBQ with 5 sources (Question #1)
If you live in the New York City area, you might have heard about the recent student protests against cuts to the arts programs at LaGuardia High School (aka the “Fame” school).
I don’t normally focus on local news, but in this case, I think the real story is much larger than what’s getting reported; in fact, I think that it’s getting overlooked entirely. I happen to have some insider knowledge of the school (colleagues, former students), and although it’s unique in many regards, some of the changes it’s undergone are actually reflective of a much larger trend involving the creeping privatization of public education.
In case you haven’t been following the events, here are the basics: (more…)
A while back, I happened to find myself discussing the AP® craze with a colleague who teaches AP classes, and at one point, she mentioned offhandedly that with the push toward data collection and continual assessment, schools are increasingly eliminating the type of cumulative final exams that used to be standard in favor of frequent small-scale quizzes and tests that can be easily plotted for administrators’ consumption.
I poked around and discovered that some schools have also eliminated cumulative mid-term or final exams because such assessments are insufficiently “authentic” (read: not fun) or because of concerns about stress, or because so much time is already devoted to state tests.
I wasn’t really aware of that shift when I was tutoring various SAT II and AP exams, but it explained some of what I encountered: students had been exposed to key concepts, but they hadn’t been given sufficient practice for those concepts to really sink in. They were learning only what they needed to know for a particular quiz or test and then promptly forgetting the material.