A.P. U.S. History F.A.Q (Frequently Asked Questions)
What is AP? How is it different from an “Honors” class?
AP stands for Advanced Placement. It is a program developed by the College Board to offer college level rigor in high school. Honors courses, on the other hand, are designed to be more challenging versions of high school classes. AP courses are demanding, and students can expect them to be among the most challenging & rewarding courses they have taken.
What are the advantages of taking an AP course?
AP courses give students several advantages: an edge in college admissions, an opportunity to earn college credit while still in high school (saving time and money in college), an extra GPA grade point, exposure to more rigorous study, and a thorough introduction to the subject. According to the College Board the average public four-year college student should expect to pay $7,605 in tuition for each year of attendance. They go on to explain that passing an AP course can save the student/parent between 750 - 1500$. When you add in cost for books and time spent on the class an AP course adds up to a considerable savings especially since at RHS you take the AP course and exam for free.
What is AP US History like? How will the class be taught?
AP US History (APUSH) is an intensive college type survey class taught in high school. The entire scope of American history will be considered, from the pre-Columbian era to the present. APUSH will be taught with an emphasis on content mastery and developing critical thinking skills. Frequent readings and regular lectures will be used to provide students with a base of historical knowledge. Regular essays, primary source analysis and occasional projects will be the main tools used to cultivate the skills students need to be successful on the AP US History exam and in their future college courses.
How hard is AP US History?
APUSH is probably much more challenging than any course students will have taken up to this point. In many ways. Not only do we use a college textbook but we finish it in less time. And all AP courses culminate with the AP exam, which is more difficult than a typical final exam. As in a college course, the responsibility for learning rests on the student, not the instructor. Throughout the course there is plenty of opportunities for students to correct or retake their work for a higher score. I am available by appointment for help either before or after school. If you are struggling I highly encourage students to talk with me to come up with a plan for your success. I am here to help.
How much work will be given? How much time does APUSH require?
In order to finish the textbook before the AP exam, students will read and complete, on average, one chapter each week. A multiple choice test and an essay will be given for each unit. Other assignments and projects will also be incorporated into the class. Many students will initially find the pace challenging, but most will adapt and find that they are capable of working harder than they previously imagined. Students should be prepared to spend an hour every night reading, studying, and/or preparing.
Is there a summer assignment? Will there be any work given over winter or spring break?
Yes. Details of the assignment including the text to be read and questions to be answered will be posted towards the last day of school The work is due the first day of school. Students are expected to study during school breaks for the AP US History exam in May.
What is the AP US History exam?
The APUSH exam is a nationally administered three hour and fifteen minute exam consisting of 55 multiple choice questions, 4 Short-Answer questions,1 document based essay question, and 1 Long-Essay Question.
Do all colleges give AP credit? How much credit can be earned?
Each college is free to set its own policy regarding AP scores. In general, Florida public universities accept scores of 3 or higher and most private colleges accept scores of 4 or higher. (AP exams are graded on a scale of 1-5.) Even colleges that do not accept AP scores for credit still strongly favor AP students during the admissions process. As of 2016 the University of Florida gives between 3-6 credits depending upon the students AP score, most public Florida schools have a similar arrangement. It is Florida Law that student earning a at least a 3 on any AP exam be given credit at the university level. Students should contact schools directly or use the following site to learn about each institution’s specific policies regarding AP credit: http://collegesearch.collegeboard.com/apcreditpolicy/index.jsp
Would buying a review book help?
Commercially available AP US History review books will be of help to students during the course. If used correctly is a great way to review and learn the general scope of the course.
What is considered cheating?
Cheating is whenever a student attempts to earn credit for any work that is not completed using his or her own original effort and/or ideas. Cheating is unfair, corrosive to our shared sense of mission and taken very seriously in AP US History. At the university level, cheating results in an automatic “F” in the course and often academic suspension or even expulsion from the university.
Please carefully read this document and all of the information on the website before contacting me with any questions about APUSH History.