In this lesson, we'll examine the free-response section of the exam closer, including the instructions, types of questions, timing, and scoring.Edie is very excited: she's in high school, but thanks to Advanced Placement exams, she's going to end up with college credits before she even finishes high school!
Edie should also understand that she is likely to see two different types of questions: unit-based and interunit questions.
Unit-based questions ask for students to explain something that has to do with a particular part of psychology.
If Edie sees the words 'explain,' 'discuss,' or 'relate,' she'll want to make connections between the question and different psychological viewpoints.
For example, if she's asked to discuss the major shift in psychology in the mid-20th century, she'll want to write about the way that the middle of the 20th century, powered by social, political, and scientific changes, moved from a mostly behavioral view to a mostly cognitive one.
Edie is going to take the AP Psychology Exam, which allows students who pass it to get credit for a college introductory psychology class.
It's like she'll have taken 'Intro to Psych' before she even sets foot on her college campus!If she sees the word 'identify,' it means that she should point out psychological concepts in her response.For example, if she's asked to identify the school of thought that Edward Thorndike and Alfred Binet contributed to, she'll want to mention educational psychology in her answer.'Show' or 'describe' in the question indicates that Edie should detail characteristics and give examples of whatever they are asking about.For example, if they ask her to describe Howard Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences, she'll want to mention what it is and also give examples of different intelligences in Gardner's theory, like intrapersonal or kinesthetic intelligence.She's not the best writer, and having to write two essays in less than an hour seems really hard to her!To save time, Edie can memorize the instructions ahead of time.In some cases, these can be effectively answered with 1–2 sentences.As for advice, the College Board provides a lot of analysis of previous AP Psychology free response questions (bottom of ).In one question involving driving and motor neurons, writing that “motor neurons help you drive is insufficient”, but writing that “motor neurons help you drive by sending signals to muscles which allow feet to press gas pedals” is specific enough to get points.As a member, you'll also get unlimited access to over 79,000 lessons in math, English, science, history, and more.