AP Psychology Updates and New Resources for 2019-20
To help more students prepare for — and succeed on — the AP Psychology 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.
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.
AP Psychology Course and Exam Description—Fall 2019
This is the core document for this course and is new 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.
AP Psychology Scoring GuidelinesThis document details how each of the sample free-response questions in the 2019-20 CED would be scored.
AP Psychology is an introductory college-level psychology course. Students cultivate their understanding of the systematic and scientific study of human behavior and mental processes through inquiry-based investigations as they explore concepts like the biological bases of behavior, sensation and perception, learning and cognition, motivation, developmental psychology, testing and individual differences, treatment of abnormal behavior, and social psychology.
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.
The course framework provides a clear and detailed description of the course requirements necessary for student success. The framework specifies what students must know, be able to do, and understand, with a focus on ideas that encompass core principles, theories, and processes of the discipline. The framework also encourages instruction that prepares students for advanced coursework in the field of psychology at the undergraduate level.
The AP Psychology framework is organized into nine 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: Scientific Foundations of Psychology||10%–14%|
|Unit 2: Biological Bases of Behavior||8%–10%|
|Unit 3: Sensation and Perception||6%–8%|
|Unit 4: Learning||7%–9%|
|Unit 5: Cognitive Psychology||13%–17%|
|Unit 6: Developmental Psychology||7%–9%|
|Unit 7: Motivation, Emotion, and Personality||11%–15%|
|Unit 8: Clinical Psychology||12%–16%|
|Unit 9: Social Psychology||8%–10%|
The new AP Psychology framework included in the course and exam description outlines distinct skills that students should practice throughout the year—skills that will help them learn to think and act like psychologists.
|Skill||Description||Exam Weighting (Multiple-Choice Section)|
|1. Concept Understanding||Define, explain, and apply concepts, behavior, theories, and perspectives.||75%–80%|
|2. Data Analysis||Analyze and interpret quantitative data.||8%–12%|
|3. Scientific Investigation||Analyze psychological research studies.||12%–16%|
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 Psychology.