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Important Updates

2017 Chief Reader Report Module
The Chief Reader for the 2017 AP European History exam provides a brief walkthrough of the highlights of their Chief Reader Report.  In this presentation, Paul Deslandes of the University of Vermont gives bite-sized overviews of each free-response question—how students performed, teaching tips for areas where students struggled, and a deeper understanding of the questions and results.

Exam Overview

The AP European History Exam measures students' knowledge of European history and their ability to think historically. Questions are based on key and supporting concepts, course themes, and the disciplinary practices and reasoning skills outlined in the course and exam description.

Encourage your students to visit the AP European History student page for exam information and exam practice.

Exam Format

Section I: Part A

Multiple Choice— 55 Questions | 55 Minutes | 40% of Exam Score

  • Questions appear in sets of 2 to 5.
  • Students analyze historical texts, interpretations, and evidence.
  • Primary and secondary sources, images, graphs, and maps are included.

Section I: Part B

Short Answer — 3 Questions | 40 Minutes | 20% of Exam Score

  • Analyze historians' interpretations, historical sources, and propositions about history.
  • Questions provide opportunities for students to demonstrate what they know best.
  • Some questions include texts, images, graphs, or maps.
  • Students choose between two options for the final required short-answer question, each one focusing on a different time period:
    • Question 1 (required): 1600–2001
    • Question 2 (required): 1600–2001
    • Students choose between Question 3, periods 1-2, and Question 4, periods 3-4

Section II: Part A

Document Based — 1 Question | 60 Minutes (includes 15-minute reading period) | 25% of Exam Score

  • Assess written, quantitative, or visual materials as historical evidence.
  • Develop an argument supported by an analysis of historical evidence.
  • The document-based question focuses on topics from 1600-2001.

Section II: Part B

Long Essay — 1 Question | 40 Minutes | 15% of Exam Score

  • Explain and analyze significant issues in European history.
  • Develop an argument supported by an analysis of historical evidence.
  • The question choices focus on the same theme and skill, but students choose from three options, each focusing on a different range of time periods:
    • Option 1: period 1
    • Option 2: periods 2-3
    • Option 3: periods 3-4

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

For free-response questions from recent 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.

You can also watch the 2017 Chief Reader Report Module. In this presentation, Paul Deslandes of the University of Vermont gives a brief and helpful walkthrough of the highlights of his 2017 Chief Reader Report.

Exam questions from the May 2015 administrations and before are also available. 

Exam Resources