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Important Updates

Preparing Students for the Exam

Starting August 1, students and teachers will have new resources and a daily support tool called AP Classroom to use throughout the year. Designed and tested in collaboration with AP teachers, these resources include unit guides that cover the content and skills assessed on the exam, progress checks and a dashboard to highlight strengths and opportunities fo growth, and a question bank of real AP questions.

Learn more about the new resources

Exam Overview

Exam questions assess the course concepts and skills outlined in the course framework. For more information on exam weighting, download the AP English Language and Composition Course and Exam Description.

Encourage your students to visit the AP English Language and Composition student page for exam information and exam practice.
 
  • Event
    • Wed, May 13, 2020

    AP English Language and Composition Exam Day

    • 8 a.m. | 3 hrs 15 mins

Exam Format

Starting in the 2019-20 school year, the AP English Language and Composition Exam will have question types and point values that will remain stable and consistent from year to year, so you and your students know what to expect on exam day.

Exam Updates
2019 Exam Starting with the 2020 Exam

Section I: Multiple Choice

52–55 Questions | 1 Hour | 45% of Exam Score

  • Questions focus exclusively on rhetorical analysis and are presented in 4 sets built around lengthy stimulus passages.
  • The distribution of different question types varies.

Section I: Multiple Choice

45 Questions | 1 Hour | 45% of Exam Score

  • Questions will be presented in 5 sets, with shorter stimulus passages.
  • 23–25 Reading questions
  • 20–22 Writing questions

 

Section II: Free Response

3 Free-Response Questions | 2 Hours 15 Minutes (includes a 15-minute reading period) | 55% of Exam Score

  • 1 synthesis question
  • 1 rhetorical analysis question
  • 1 argument question

The free-response questions are scored using holistic rubrics.

Section II: Free Response

3 Free-Response Questions | 2 Hours 15 Minutes (includes a 15-minute reading period) | 55% of Exam Score

  • 1 synthesis question
  • 1 rhetorical analysis question
  • 1 argument question

The free-response questions will now be scored using analytic rubrics.

Exam Tasks and Content

Section 1: Multiple Choice

  • Includes 5 sets of questions.
    • 23–25 Reading questions that ask students to read and analyze nonfiction texts.
    • 20–22 Writing questions, a new type of question, that ask students to “read like a writer” and consider revisions to stimulus texts.

Section 2: Free Response

  • Students write essays that respond to 3 free-response prompts from the following categories.
    • Synthesis Question: After reading 6–7 texts about a topic (including visual and quantitative sources), students will compose an argument that combines and cites at least 3 of the sources to support their thesis.
    • Rhetorical Analysis: Students will read a nonfiction text and analyze how the writer’s language choices contribute to the intended meaning and purpose of the text.
    • Argument: Students will create an evidence-based argument that responds to a given topic.

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

For free-response questions (FRQs) from the 2019 exam, along with scoring information, check out the table below.

Be sure to review the Chief Reader Report. In this invaluable resource, the chief reader of the AP Exam compiles feedback from members of the AP Reading leadership to explain how students performed on the FRQs, summarize typical student errors, and address specific concepts and content with which students have struggled the most that year.

Beginning in August 2019, you’ll have access to the full range of questions from past exams in AP Classroom. You’ll have access to:

  • an online library of AP questions relevant to your course
  • personal progress checks with new formative questions
  • a dashboard to display results from progress checks and provide real-time insights

2019: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Coming Soon

Coming Soon

Coming Soon

Coming Soon: Scoring Guidelines for CED Sample Free-Response Questions

Scoring guidelines for the sample exam questions within the AP English Language and Composition Course and Exam Description will be posted later this summer.