5. 8-Fold Path- #5: Pick Your Poison

5 Days. 120 Hours. 7,200 Minutes.

We are close enough now to the AP World History Exam to actually talk about this thing.  There is more to this thing than knowing everything that’s ever happened ever… 

This may be the most helpful tip (IMO).  You will have 55 minutes to answer 70 questions.  But, after that you will have a brief break.  Then, the other half of the test… THE ESSAYS.  Here is where you need to game the system.  They give you two hours and ten minutes to write three essays.  That’s where the instructions end.  Therefore, those two hours and ten minutes are yours.  Enjoy them.  Use them to your advantage. Here is how you can maximize your score:

Don’t just start on the DBQ.  Look at all three. See if they are in English.  Is it something you know? Is it something you should know? Either way, look through them and see what they are asking.  

You’ve read all three.  Is there one you think you could do pretty easily? One that is at least somewhat familiar? Hopefully, there will be THREE ESSAYS THAT YOU CAN DO… But, let’s be honest: You could be staring down three essays you think you can’t do… In that case, DO THE DBQ FIRST! The DBQ has historically (except last year) been on a pretty obscure World History topic (Olympics, Cricket, etc.) You should be able to get some points out of this thing regardless.  So, if all else fails… Do the DBQ

If you feel confident about the COMPARE/CONTRAST or CONTINUITY/CHANGE OVER TIME do it.  Do them both, if you can!  Both of these essays require you to know history.  You have to know the topics or you won’t get the points.  If you feel confident here… Write them.  If you only know one, write one.  THEN… WRITE THE DBQ.  The DBQ is our home base. You can write this essay.  This is testing your historical skills, not your historical knowledge (you do get points for outside information).  If you know the Continuity and Change essay and write it first and get a 4.  Then, write the DBQ and get a 5. And, finally, don’t even get to the Compare/Contrast… You will have scored a 9/27 on the essay portion.  The national average on all three essays combined last year was a 5/27.  So, don’t linger on an impossible essay.  Save it for last.  Write what you know and get the points you can get before you get to the essay comparing Siam and Cherokees.

Posted on May 7, 2016 .