A Study Guide for AP Students as Exams Approach


Photo by Trisha Yu

One of the most daunting but rewarding experiences in many people’s high school careers is taking AP classes for college credit. While these classes are much more advanced than what you may be used to, it is incredibly useful and fulfilling to be able to do well on the corresponding exam. Whether you’re looking for additional resources to add to your studying plan or planning ahead for next year, here are some of the few key ways to help you study and prepare for the exam during May and June.


College Board Website

As well as offering the AP courses, the College Board has a wide variety of resources to help you prepare for your upcoming exams. You can find many previous years’ exams alongside explanations of the answers; this can also help you have a general impression of what sort of questions may be asked on your exam. Additionally, you can find AP Daily videos that go over the basic content of each unit as well as assistance on how to answer the most common question formats on the AP Exam itself. 


Review Books

Review books from companies such as The Princeton Review and Barron’s are some of the best guides to help you study. In addition to full-length practice tests, they often contain summaries of the most significant information from each unit to refresh your memory. It is recommended that you practice taking the full-length practice exams a few weeks before the real exam so you are familiar with managing your time and seeing what kind of questions are expected to encounter. 


Practice Sites

If you happen to be away from your notebooks or just want to do some light review, sites such as Quizlet.com and CrackAP.com are great for looking over the most significant terms, concepts, and practicing multiple choice questions. Additionally, if you and our friends happen to be taking the same AP course, you could also play a few rounds on Kahoot as both a fun and easy way to review basic concepts of the course. 


Your Own Notes

Ultimately, one of the most important steps towards succeeding on any AP exam is having a full comprehension of the material covered in the course. This means taking notes throughout your class that you will be able to look back at and understand. Having good note-taking skills will also serve to help you greatly in college later on, so it is definitely wise to begin developing this good habit now. Even if you realize that your notes aren’t very detailed, looking through past worksheets, class tests, and other assignments can help you review your past units. 


Final Thoughts

While studying enough is crucial for your success on the exams, prioritize getting enough sleep, especially the week of your exam. Additionally, spread out your studying over the course of several weeks prior to your exam instead of procrastinating and attempting to cram the week of the exam, as that is likely to be ineffective and detrimental to your overall comprehension. Finally, it is important to reduce the level of anxiety you have for the exam; the more confident you are, the more likely you will do well. Believe in your preparations and do your best!