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Important Updates

2019-20 AP Course Audit: What You’ll Need to Do

To give you more time to familiarize yourself with the new resources and supports that launched in August, you won’t be required to submit a syllabus for course authorization until the 2020-21 school year.

If you’re teaching a new AP European History course in 2019-20, you’ll need to:

  • Submit a subject-specific AP Course Audit Form
  • Download the AP European History unit guide

If you’re teaching a previously authorized AP European History course, make sure your school administrator renews your course in 2019-20.

These steps will ensure that your course appears on the AP Course Ledger and you have access to online score reports in July 2020.

AP Course Audit

All schools that want to label a course “AP” must get authorization through the AP Course Audit.

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Designing Your AP European History Course


The AP European History course should be designed by your school to provide students with a learning experience equivalent to that of an introductory college course in European history or Western civilization (1450 to the present). Your course needs to provide students with the analytic skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the topics and materials in European history.

There are no specific curricular prerequisites for students taking AP European History.

Getting to Know the Course and Exam

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 AP course and exam.

AP European History Course and Exam Description

This is the core document for this course and is updated for the 2019-20 school year. New unit guides clearly lay out the course content and skills and recommend sequencing and pacing for them throughout the year. The CED also more clearly outlines how material will be assessed on the exam, provides instructional strategies, and gives information on the AP Program in general.

Course Requirements

Use these resources to design your syllabus.


Your course must fulfill these requirements.

AP European History curricular requirements:

  • The course includes a college-level European history textbook, diverse primary sources, and multiple secondary sources written by historians or scholars interpreting the past.
  • The course provides opportunities to deepen student understanding of the required content outlined in each of the units described in the course and exam description.
  • The course provides opportunities to deepen student understanding of the course themes.
  • The course provides opportunities for students to develop the historical thinking skills:
    • Skill 1: Developments and Processes
    • Skill 2: Sourcing and Situation
    • Skill 3: Claims and Evidence in Sources
    • Skill 4: Contextualization
    • Skill 5: Making Connections (through the application of the 3 historical reasoning processes—comparison, causation, continuity and change)
    • Skill 6: Argumentation (using historical reasoning processes)

AP European History resource requirements:

  • The school ensures that each student has a college-level European history textbook (in print or electronic format) published within the last 10 years 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 the most recent edition of a European history textbook and other appropriate materials to support instruction.
  • The school ensures that each student has copies of primary sources and other instructional materials used in the course for individual use inside and outside of the classroom.
  • The school ensures that each student has access to support materials for the European history course, including scholarly, college-level works that correspond with course topics; writings by major history authors; as well as standard reference works such as encyclopedias, atlases, collections of historical documents, and statistical compendiums, either in a school or public library or via the internet.

The list below represents examples of textbooks that meet the resource requirements of AP European History and have met or exceed the required alignment to the learning objectives and skills in the course curriculum framework. The list is not exhaustive and the texts listed should not be regarded as endorsed, authorized, recommended, or approved by the 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, supporting resources to confirm that the course as a whole provides students with the content delineated in the curricular requirements of the AP Course Audit.

These materials have been reviewed by Learning List. Inclusion on this list, however, does not indicate that the material is aligned to 100% of the course framework. The materials on this list range in alignment from 59% to 100%. Learning List’s detailed alignment reports identify the specific learning objectives and practices to which each material is and is not aligned to help teachers use these materials more effectively. See the Learning List reviews of these materials or contact Learning List for more information.

  • Hansen, Valerie and Ken Curtis. Voyages in World History, Updated AP Edition. 3rd edition. National Geographic Learning/Cengage Learning.
  • McKay, John P., Clare Haru Crowston, Merry E. Weisner-Hanks, and Joe Perry. A History of Western Society Since 1300 for the AP® Course. 12th edition. Bedford, Freeman and Worth Publishing Group. 
  • Palmer, R.R., Joel Colton, and Lloyd Kramer. A History of Europe in the Modern World, AP Edition. 11th edition. McGraw-Hill Education.