AP English Language and Composition is an introductory college-level composition course. Students cultivate their understanding of writing and rhetorical arguments through reading, analyzing, and writing texts as they explore topics like rhetorical situation, claims and evidence, reasoning and organization, and style.
Course and Exam Description
AP English Language and Composition Course and Exam Description
This is the core document for this course. Unit guides clearly lay out the course content and skills and recommend sequencing and pacing for them throughout the year. The CED was updated in the summer of 2020 to include scoring guidelines for the example questions.
AP English Language and Composition Course Overview
This resource provides a succinct description of the course and exam.
AP English Language and Composition Course and Exam Description Walk-Through
Learn more about the CED in this interactive walk-through.
AP English Language and Composition Course at a Glance
Excerpted from the AP English Language and Composition Course and Exam Description, the Course at a Glance document outlines the topics and skills covered in the AP English Language and Composition course, along with suggestions for sequencing.
AP English Language and Composition CED Errata Sheet
This document details the updates made to the course and exam description (CED) in September 2019. It includes printable copies of the updated pages, which can be used as replacement sheets in your CED binder. Note: It does not include the scoring guidelines, which were added to the online CED in the summer of 2020.
AP English Language and Composition CED Scoring Guidelines
This document details how each of the sample free-response questions in the course and exam description (CED) would be scored. This information is now in the online CED but was not included in the binders teachers received in 2019.
The Difference Between AP English Language and Composition and AP English Literature and Composition
Learn the similarities and differences between these two courses and exams.
The course skills are organized within nine units that scaffold student development of the analysis and composition skills required for college credit. For each unit, the teacher selects a theme or topic and then chooses texts, typically short nonfiction pieces, that enable students to practice and develop the reading and writing skills for that unit. This course framework provides a description of what students should know and be able to do to qualify for college credit or placement. As always, you have the flexibility to organize the course content as you like.
The updated AP English Language and Composition framework included in the course and exam description outlines distinct skills that students should practice throughout the year—skills that will help them learn to think and act like writers.
Exam Weighting (Multiple-Choice Section)
|1. Rhetorical Situation: Reading||Explain how writers’ choices reflect the components of the rhetorical situation.||11%–14%|
|2. Rhetorical Situation: Writing||Make strategic choices in a text to address a rhetorical situation.||11%–14%|
|3. Claims and Evidence: Reading||Identify and describe the claims and evidence of an argument.||13%–16%|
|4. Claims and Evidence: Writing||Analyze and select evidence to develop and refine a claim.||11%–14%|
|5. Reasoning and Organization: Reading||Describe the reasoning, organization, and development of an argument.||13%–16%|
|6. Reasoning and Organization: Writing||Use organization and commentary to illuminate the line of reasoning in an argument.||11%–14%|
|7. Style: Reading||Explain how writers’ stylistic choices contribute to the purpose of an argument.||11–14%|
|8. Style: Writing||Select words and use elements of composition to advance an argument.||11–14%|
AP and Higher Education
Higher education professionals play a key role in developing AP courses and exams, setting credit and placement policies, and scoring student work. The AP Higher Education section features information on recruitment and admission, advising and placement, and more.
This chart shows recommended scores for granting credit, and how much credit should be awarded, for each AP course. Your students can look up credit and placement policies for colleges and universities on the AP Credit Policy Search.
Meet the AP English Language and Composition Development Committee
The AP Program is unique in its reliance on Development Committees. These committees, made up of an equal number of college faculty and experienced secondary AP teachers from across the country, are essential to the preparation of AP course curricula and exams.