The AP Human Geography exam is a tough one. It has both multiple-choice and free-response questions that require a wide variety of skills and knowledge. It takes a lot of work to earn a 3. The best way to pass the exam is by maintaining a regular study routine that includes good review books, flashcards, and practice exams.
Make a List
The AP human geography study guide requires a wide range of skills, including memorization and thinking critically and analytically. It’s important to talk with several students who have taken the course to get a wide range of opinions about their experience, including what was challenging and how well they did on the exam. This will help you determine which content and skill areas need the most review before test day. You can also use this information to categorize your mistakes on practice tests, identifying which concepts and terms you still need to learn or revisit. The AP website offers valuable resources to help you prepare for the free-response portion of the exam, including past questions and scoring guidelines. Reviewing these materials as you prepare for the test and throughout the semester to reinforce your knowledge of the topic areas is a good idea.
Recitation is one of the most tried and true methods for memorizing vocabulary. Your brain retains words better when you read them out loud, so try reading each AP Human Geography term at least three times. It will also help you perfect your pronunciation of the terms. You can also make your flashcards to study AP Human Geography terms. Write each word on one side of the card and its definition on the other. Use helpful mnemonic devices on the definition sides to increase your chances of remembering them. If you get bored with your flashcards, change the colors and shapes to keep them interesting. Once you have a list of the AP Human Geography terms you need to know, start studying. Analyze your mistakes on practice tests to determine the content and skills you need to work on.
As you read through your course materials, write notes and definitions for terms you don’t understand. This can help you solidify your understanding of those terms, and it’s a great way to practice for the exam! Writing notes will also prepare you for the free-response section of the exam. Studying alone can quickly become tedious, so try to find a group of AP Human Geography classmates who want to meet once or twice a week to review the material together.
AP Human Geography isn’t an easy class. It has a low pass rate, especially among second or first-year students. The key to acing this exam is to develop a consistent study routine with a review book, flashcards, study groups, and monthly practice exams. Keep a journal about current events in the news that relate to geography. This will help you think geographically and use vocabulary words when writing a free-response question. You may encounter questions on the AP Human Geography exam that require you to analyze and compare different geographic models. Creating a separate journal detailing these models and their application to real-life situations will help you memorize them and apply them when answering FRQs. You could also make a set of flashcards and add the terms to your regular study schedule. Then, you’ll be ready to analyze and evaluate the questions on test day.
Most of your AP Human Geography exam score will come from the free-response section. These questions will feature data, maps, or images you must analyze and interpret. A sample free-response question and scoring guidelines can be found on the AP website. Many multiple-choice questions and some free-response questions ask for definitions. Knowing the vocabulary for these terms will allow you to understand questions without relying on shaky assumptions or inferences. If you’re having trouble remembering the meanings of specific AP Human Geography terms, watch videos that explain them. This is a tried and true method for memorizing vocabulary—your brain will retain words you hear versus read, and it’s easier to understand technical terms with a visual than just written text.
The first step in improving your AP Human Geography exam performance is determining which areas to work on. Flashcards are an effective way to learn and remember terms for the AP Human Geography exam. However, it’s important to note that some cards may contain elementary terms you already know. So, if you’re using flashcards, start with the more complex words and move down the list to the simpler ones.
Another helpful strategy for memorizing key terms is to practice with AP Human Geography review books. These books often include complete practice tests that mimic the format of the actual AP exam and can help you identify weak areas. They also provide a wealth of in-depth review material to supplement your course materials.