I'm taking an AP English Language exam next week and was wondering if anyone has any tips for this specific exam or AP tests in general? Please don't answer with short, obvious responses telling me not to cram, to get a good night's sleep, or eat a good breakfast before the exam.
Answer by RH510 · May 06, 2011 at 05:45 PM
Quite frankly just don't worry about it. Anybody that has ever told you to get a good night's rest, eat breakfast, and not to cram have clearly never taken an AP test before. I took an AP English exam two years ago on four hours of sleep, no breakfast, and literally 6 hours worth of cramming. Granted, most of the stuff that I studied I had forgotten come time for the test, but it did help some.
The test, as I recall, consisted of three essays and a ton of multiple choice.
For the multiple choice: ALWAYS go with your first choice. Once you make your decision, stick with it. If you don't you'll kill very precious time trying to figure out the "right" answer. Do not be afraid to skip questions and remember, if you do not know the answer at all, DO NOT GUESS. The AP committee deducts points for wrong answers but they will not score a blank answer. Do not rush through the multiple choice either, it'll kill you if you do. Patience is smooth, smooth is fast.
For the essays: All of your essays will be timed so work as fast as possible. If I remember correctly you will be given all three essays at once, so read all of the prompts first then decide which would be the easiest to write about, then write that one first. Scan very quickly through the sources they give you and write as efficiently as possible. ALWAYS CITE YOUR SOURCES, at the end of the paragraph put the source you referenced in parentheses or cite in the paragraph for multiple sources. And if you find that you don't like the sentence or paragraph you wrote don't waste time erasing it, cross out sentences and 'X' out paragraphs. They don't care how your essay looks as long as they can read it.
Finally, and most importantly, don't go into the exam worrying about it. Either you pass it or you don't. Just give it hell then move on.
Follow any, all, or none of my advice it is entirely up to you. I wish you good luck and hope you do well.
In case you were curious, I scored a five on the AP English exam. Whether or not that influences your decision on following my advice is entirely up to you.
Best of luck.