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Important Updates

AP Human Geography Updates and New Resources for 2019-20

To help more students prepare for — and succeed on — the AP Human Geography Exam, we’ve clarified the course’s focus starting with the 2019-20 school year and are introducing new resources for your classroom. We’ve also moved exam registration to the fall, a best practice that improves students’ chances of earning college credit and placement

Download the new course and exam description

New AP Resources
This August, we’re introducing AP Classroom, with a suite of new resources designed in collaboration with AP educators that will help give students personalized feedback throughout the year. These include in-depth unit guides, personal progress checks and a dashboard to measure student progress, and a question bank of real AP questions.

Learn more about AP Classroom

Course Overview

AP Human Geography is an introductory college-level human geography course. Students cultivate their understanding of human geography through data and geographic analyses as they explore topics like patterns and spatial organization, human impacts and interactions with their environment, and spatial processes and societal changes.

Your new course and exam description (CED) for the 2019-20 school year more clearly outlines all required course content and skills and defines how they will be assessed on the exam.

Course Content

Based on the Understanding by Design® (Wiggins and McTighe) model, this course framework provides a clear and detailed description of the course requirements necessary for student success. The framework specifies what students must know, understand, and be able to do, with a focus on big ideas that encompass core principles, theories, and processes of the discipline. The framework also encourages instruction that prepares students for advanced geography coursework and active global citizenship.

The AP Human Geography framework is organized into seven commonly taught units of study that provide one possible sequence for the course. As always, you have the flexibility to organize the course content as you like.

 Unit
 Exam Weighting (Multiple-Choice Section)
 Unit 1: Thinking Geographically  8%-10%
 Unit 2: Population and Migration Patterns and Processes  12%–17%
 Unit 3: Cultural Patterns and Processes  12%–17%
 Unit 4: Political Patterns and Processes  12%–17%
 Unit 5: Agriculture and Rural Land-Use Patterns and Processes  12%–17%
 Unit 6: Cities and Urban Land-Use Patterns and Processes  12%–17%
 Unit 7: Industrial and Economic Development Patterns and Processes  12%–17%

Course Skills

The new AP Human Geography framework included in the CED outlines distinct skills that students should practice throughout the year—skills that will help them learn to think and act like geographers.

 Skill
 Description
 Exam Weighting (Multiple-Choice Section)
 Exam Weighting (Free-Response Section)
 1. Concepts and Processes  Analyze geographic theories, approaches, concepts, processes, or models in theoretical and applied contexts  25%–36%  23%–29%
 2. Spatial Relationships  Analyze geographic patterns, relationships, and outcomes in applied contexts  16%–25%  33%–43%
 3. Data Analysis  Analyze and interpret quantitative geographic data represented in maps, tables, charts, graphs, satellite images, and infographics  13%–20%  10%–19%
 4. Source Analysis  Analyze and interpret qualitative geographic information represented in maps, images (e.g., satellite, photographs, cartoons), and landscapes  13%–20%  10%–19%
 5. Scale Analysis  Analyze geographic theories, approaches, concepts, processes, and models across geographic scales to explain spatial relationships  13%–20%  10%–14%

AP and Higher Education

Higher education professionals play a key role developing AP courses and exams, setting credit and placement policies, and scoring student work. The AP Higher Education site 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 current Development Committee for AP Human Geography.