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Kaplan AP Psychology 2005
By Kaplan Educational Centers
KaplanCopyright © 2005 Kaplan Educational Centers
All right reserved.
Chapter One: Anatomy of the Exam
Congratulations! You should be proud of yourself for deciding to take the Advanced Placement Psychology exam. Taking the exam can help you earn college credit and/or placement into advanced coursework. Not only that, it can help you improve your chances of acceptance to competitive schools, since colleges know that AP students are better prepared for the demands of college courses.
This book is designed to help you go into the test with confidence. You'll learn how the test is set up, what topics will be covered, and how to apply the best strategies. Each chapter includes review questions that will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. That, in turn, will help you to establish a study plan for areas you need to review. And finally, you'll finish the book by taking two full-length practice tests, so you can apply what you have learned.
Overview of the test structure
The AP Psychology exam is designed yearly by the AP Test Development Committee. It allows you to demonstrate mastery of skills equivalent to those typically found in introductory college psychology classes. The exam is two hours long, and it has two sections: multiple-choice and free-response.
Section -- Number of Questions -- Time
I -- 100 multiple-choice questions -- 70 minutes
II -- 2 free-response questions -- 50 minutes
-- Total - 2 hours
Section I contains 100 multiple-choice questions. Section II contains two free-response questions; for these brief essay questions, you may be asked to analyze a problem in psychology -- such as depression, using different theoretical frameworks, or to design a research study. As for how each section breaks down with respect to your grade, the multiple-choice section accounts for two-thirds of your grade while the essay section accounts for one-third.
The exam covers the major topical areas of a standard college-level psychology course. The following outline is to be used only as a guide.
History and Approaches (2-4%)
A. Logic, Philosophy, and History of Science
Research Methods and Approaches (6-8%)
A. Experimental, Correlational, and Clinical Research
C. Ethics in Research
Biological Bases of Behavior (8-10%)
A. Physiological Techniques (e.g., imaging, surgical)
C. Functional Organization of Nervous System
D. Neural Transmission
E. Endocrine System
Sensation and Perception (7-9%)
B. Sensory Mechanisms
C. Sensory Adaptation
E. Perceptual Processes
States of Consciousness (2-4%)
A. Sleep and Dreaming
C. Psychoactive Drug Effects
A. Classical Conditioning
B. Operant Conditioning
C. Cognitive Processes in Learning
D. Biological Factors
E. Social Learning
D. Problem-Solving and Creativity
Motivation and Emotion (7-9%)
A. Biological Bases
B. Theories of Motivation
C. Hunger, Thirst, Sex, and Pain
D. Social Motives
E. Theories of Emotion
Developmental Psychology (7-9%)
A. Life-Span Approach
B. Research Methods
C. Heredity-Environment Issues
D. Developmental Theories
E. Dimensions of Development
F. Sex Roles, Sex Differences
A. Personality Theories and Approaches
B. Assessment Techniques
C. Self-Concept, Self-Esteem
D. Growth and Adjustment
Testing and Individual Differences (5-7%)
A. Standardization and Norms
B. Reliability and Validity
C. Types of Tests
D. Ethics and Standards in Testing
F. Heredity/Environment and Intelligence
G. Human Diversity
Abnormal Psychology (7-9%)
A. Definitions of Abnormality
B. Theories of Psychopathology
C. Diagnosis of Psychopathology
D. Anxiety Disorders
E. Somatoform Disorders
F. Mood Disorders
G. Schizophrenic Disorders
H. Organic Disorders
I. Personality Disorders
J. Dissociative Disorders
Treatment of Psychological Disorders (5-7%)
A. Treatment Approaches
B. Modes of Therapy (e.g., individual, group)
C. Community and Preventive Approaches
Social Psychology (7-9%)
A. Group Dynamics
B. Attribution Processes
C. Interpersonal Perception
D. Conformity, Compliance, Obedience
E. Attitudes and Attitude Change
F. Organizational Behavior
G. Aggression and Antisocial Behavior
HOW THE EXAM IS SCORED
For the multiple-choice questions, your answer sheet is scanned and scored by computer. The computer adds up all of your correct answers, subtracting a fraction of a point for each wrong answer. No points are subtracted for answers left blank.
As for the free-response questions, these are scored by hand at the annual AP Reading held in June. College professors and AP teachers known as faculty consultants meet at a location to grade the thousands of essay answers that have been written by AP Psychology students. Each grader follows a grading rubric, awarding a certain number of points if an answer includes a specific piece of information. Between 8 and 12 pieces of information must be included in the essay answers in order for them to receive full credit.
The two section scores are then combined into your composite score (though this is not reported to you or to institutions), which in turn is translated into your AP score. The AP exam is graded on a scale of 1-5.
5: Extremely well-qualified
4: Well qualified
2: Possibly qualified
1: No recommendation*
*No recommendation to receive college credit or advanced placement
There is no global policy regarding the granting of college credit based on AP grades. Some colleges require a 5 while others require a 3. Check with the schools to which you are applying in order to find out their policies.
AP Grade Reports are sent in July to your home, high school, and any colleges designated by you at the time of the test. Should you wish to forward your grade to additional colleges or to withhold your grade, contact AP Services..
How to Register
To register for the exam, contact your school guidance counselor or AP Coordinator. If your school does not administer the exam, contact AP Services for a listing of schools in your area that do.
As of this book's printing, the fee for the test is $82. For those qualified students with acute financial need, the College Board offers a $22 credit. In addition, more than 40 states offer subsidies to cover all or part of the cost of the exam.
There are additional fees for other services, such as late registration fees, etc. Check with your AP Coordinator for more details.
What you need to bring
Make sure to bring the following items with you on test day:
- Photo I.D.
- Your secondary school code number (see your Guidance Counselor or AP Coordinator)
- Your social security number
- Several sharpened No. 2 pencils
- An eraser
- A watch, in case your exam room doesn't have a clock you can easily see
And make sure you do NOT bring the following items with you:
<UL TYPE= will make your notes in the test booklet)
Where to get additional information
For more information on the AP Program and the Psychology Exam, please contact:
P.O. Box 6671
Princeton, NJ 08541-6671
Phone: (609) 771-7300 or (877) 274-6474 (toll free in the U.S. and Canada)
Excerpted from Kaplan AP Psychology 2005 by Kaplan Educational Centers Copyright © 2005 by Kaplan Educational Centers. Excerpted by permission.
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