AP Comparative Government and Politics Course and Exam Description
The key document for each AP course is the course and exam description. Start by reviewing it to understand the objectives and expectations of the course and exam.
Curricular and Resource Requirements
Your course must fulfill these requirements.
AP Comparative Government and Politics curricular requirements:
- The teacher and students have access to a college-level comparative government and politics textbook and news media sources from multiple perspectives.
- The course is structured to incorporate the big ideas and required content, including the 6 selected countries, outlined in each of the units.
- The course provides opportunities for students to develop the skills in the disciplinary practices and make connections to the big ideas:
- Disciplinary Practice 1: Concept Application
- Disciplinary Practice 2: Country Comparison (China, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, and the United Kingdom)
- Disciplinary Practice 3: Data Analysis
- Disciplinary Practice 4: Source Analysis
- Disciplinary Practice 5: Argumentation
AP Comparative Government and Politics resource requirements:
- The school ensures that each student has a copy of a college-level comparative government and politics textbook (in print or electronic format) for individual use inside and outside of the classroom. The textbook is supplemented when necessary to meet the curricular requirements.
- The school ensures that the teacher has a copy of a recent edition of a college-level comparative government and politics textbook or other appropriate materials to support instruction.
- The school ensures that each student has access to primary sources, a variety of news sources, and other information sources in order to understand contemporary political changes that may not be covered in the textbook.
Example Textbook List
The list below represents examples of textbooks that meet the curricular requirements of AP Comparative Government and Politics. The list below is not exhaustive and the texts listed should not be regarded as endorsed, authorized, recommended, or approved by College Board. Not using a book from this list does not mean that a course will not receive authorization. Syllabi submitted as part of the AP Course Audit process will be evaluated holistically, with textbooks considered along with supplementary resources to confirm that the course as a whole provides students with the content delineated in the curricular requirements of the AP Course Audit.
The current editions of the following textbooks meet the AP Course Audit curricular requirements. Earlier editions of these texts or other textbooks not listed here may meet the AP Course Audit curricular requirements if supplemented with appropriate college-level instructional resources. While every effort is made to keep this list current, it can take a few months for newly published titles and revised editions to be reviewed.
For discussions regarding the usefulness of these texts and other teaching materials in the AP Comparative Government and Politics classroom, please consult the AP Comparative Government and Politics Teacher Community.
- Barrington, Lowell. Comparative Politics: Structures and Choices. 2nd edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2013.
- Clark, William Roberts, Matt Golder, and Sona Nadenichek Golder. Principles of Comparative Politics. 3rd edition. Sage, CQ Press, 2018.
- Danzinger, James N. Understanding the Political World: A Comparative Introduction to Political Science. 12th edition. Pearson, 2016.
- Green, December, and Laura Luehrmann. Comparative Politics of the Third World: Linking Concepts and Cases. 3rd edition. Rienner, 2011.
- Hague, Rod, and Martin Harrop. Political Science: A Comparative Introduction. 8th edition. Palgrave, 2017.
- Hauss, Charles, and Melissa Hauss. Comparative Politics: Domestic Responses to Global Challenges. 10th edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2019.
- Kesselman, Mark, Joel Krieger, and William A. Joseph. Introduction to Comparative Politics. 8th edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2019.
- McCormick, John. Comparative Politics in Transition. 7th edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2013.
- O’Neil, Patrick, Essentials of Comparative Politics. 6th edition. Norton, 2017.
- O’Neil, Patrick H., Karl Fields, and Don Share. Cases in Comparative Politics. 6th edition. Norton, 2017.
- O’Neil, Patrick H., Karl Fields, and Don Share. Essentials of Comparative Politics with Cases AP edition. 6th edition. Norton, 2018.
- Orvis, Stephen, and Carol Ann Drogus. Introducing Comparative Politics: Concepts and Cases in Context. 4th edition. Sage, CQ Press, 2017.
- Powell, G, Bingham, Russel J. Dalton, and Kaare Strom. Comparative Politics Today, A World View. 11th edition. Pearson, 2015.
- Roskin, Michael G. Countries and Concepts: Politics, Geography, Culture. 13th edition. Pearson, 2016.
- Samuels, David J. Comparative Politics and Cases in Comparative Politics. 1st edition. Pearson, 2012.
- Wood, Ethel. AP Comparative Government and Politics: An Essential Coursebook and Study Guide. 7th edition. Woodyard Publications, 2015.
This annotated sample AP Comparative Government and Politics syllabus shows how the curricular requirements can be demonstrated in a syllabus and what level of detail you’ll need to include.
Guide to Developing Your Course Document
Review this document for help creating your syllabus.
Syllabus Development Guide: AP Comparative Government and Politics (.pdf/165.38 KB)
This resource includes the guidelines reviewers use to evaluate syllabi along with three samples of evidence for each requirement. This guide also specifies the level of detail required in the syllabus to receive course authorization.