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Ap Gov Past Essay Questions

Section I

Multiple Choice — 55 Questions | 45 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

Questions will focus on the core countries of the course: China, Great Britain, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, and Russia. The portion of multiple-choice questions covering each topic area is:

  • Introduction to Comparative Politics (5%)
  • Sovereignty, Authority, and Power (20%)
  • Political Institutions (35%)
  • Citizens, Society, and the State (15%)
  • Political and Economic Change (15%)
  • Public Policy (10%)

This outline is a guide—it is not a complete list of topics or a preferred order of topics.

Section II

Free Response — 8 Questions | 1 Hour, 40 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

The free-response section contains three types of questions:

  • Type I: Short Answer; 5 questions
    • These questions ask students to define concepts from the course topic outline and provide supporting information from the core countries of the course.

  • Type II: Conceptual; 1 question
    • This question requires analysis and is about a major concept from the course topic outline.

  • Type III: Country Specific; 2 questions
    • These questions ask students to provide specific information and analysis of the core countries from the course.

While there is no time limit for each type of question, we recommend that students spend 25 minutes total on the five Type I questions, 25 minutes on the Type II question, and 50 minutes total on the two country-specific questions.

Students are expected to follow the question directions and to provide the same number of examples, explanations, or selections (i.e. tasks) that the question requests. If a student provides more than the required number of responses for the prompt and any one of the examples provided is incorrect, then the student will at most earn partial credit.

Rationale: Readers are trained to read the complete free response before assigning points. If extra examples are provided and one or more are incorrect, the student will at most get partial credit. There is no advantage to students in providing more examples, explanations, or selections than are requested.

You can use the resources below to help you prepare for the exam.

Click here for details about the exam format.

Sample Questions

You’ll find sample multiple-choice, short-answer, and free-response questions free-response questions in this full AP U.S. History Practice Exam (.pdf/1.3MB).

Sample Responses

Student responses to past exam free-response questions are available on AP Central.

Short-Answer Response Booklets

Review the information about the short-answer response booklets before exam day so that you understand where to write your answers and the amount of space provided for each response. The watermarks on the pages for Q1, Q2, Q3, and Q4, as well as the instruction at the top of each page, indicate which question you should be answering on each page of the booklet. You’ll need to write your answers on the correct page in the booklet on exam day.

Exam Practice Tips

Check out our Exam Practice Tips.

Study Skills

Use our Reading and Writing Study Skills as you prepare for the exam.

Free Response Questions and Scoring Guidelines

2015

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

Free Response Questions and Scoring Guidelines: login

The exam resources below reflect the content, scope, and design specifications of the redesigned AP U.S. History Exam, which was first administered in May 2015. The exams from 2014 and before do not reflect the redesigned exam. These resources are provided to help you become familiar with the kinds of topics and questions that have been asked on previous years’ AP Exams. To access the files below, you need to log into your College Board account. If you do not have a College Board account, you can create one by selecting ‘Sign In’ in the header and following the prompts to sign-up.

2017

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2016

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2014

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2013

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2012

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2011

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2010

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2009

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2008

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2007

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2006

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2005

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2004

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2003

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2002

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

2001

All documents are PDFs unless otherwise indicated.

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