AP ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND COMPOSITIONThe Exam

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Important Updates

New Exam for Classroom Use
A secure 2017 AP English Language and Composition Exam is now available on the AP Course Audit website. To access, sign in to your AP Course Audit account, and click on the Secure Documents link in the Resources section of your Course Status page.

New Sample Student Responses and Scoring Commentary
You can now explore sample student responses and scoring commentary for the secure 2016 AP English Language and Composition Exam posted on the AP Course Audit site. To access, sign in to your AP Course Audit account and click on the Secure Documents link in the Resources section of your Course Status page.

  • Event
    • Wed, May 16, 2018

    AP English Language and Composition Exam Day 2018

    • 8 a.m. | 3 hrs 15 mins

Exam Overview

The AP English Language and Composition Exam includes multiple-choice and free-response questions that test essential skills covered in the course curriculum:

  • reading comprehension of rhetorically and topically diverse texts
  • rhetorical analysis of individual texts in isolation
  • synthesis of information from multiple texts
  • written argumentation

Encourage your students to visit the AP English Language and Composition student page for exam information and exam practice.

Exam Format

Section I

Multiple Choice — 52 to 55 Questions | 1 Hour | 45% of Exam Score

  • Excerpts from non-fiction texts are accompanied by several multiple-choice questions

Section II

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

This section has three prompts:

  • Synthesis: Students read several texts about a topic and create an argument that synthesizes at least three of the sources to support their thesis.
  • Rhetorical analysis: Students read a non-fiction text and analyze how the writer's language choices contribute to his or her purpose and intended meaning for the text.
  • Argument: Students create an evidence-based argument that responds to a given topic.

The total Section II time is 2 hours and 15 minutes. This includes a 15-minute reading period. The reading period is designed to provide students with time to develop thoughtful, well-organized responses. They may begin writing their responses before the reading period is over.

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

For free-response questions from prior exams, along with scoring information, check out the tables 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 reading leadership to describe 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.

 
2011: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2010: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2009: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions 

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2008: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2007: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2006: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

 
2005: Form B
Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Sample Responses

 
2003: Free-Response Questions
Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics

Sample Responses Q1

Sample Responses Q2

Sample Responses Q3

Grade Distributions

* Note: The third sample response has been replaced with the appropriate text (EE).

Exam Resources