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Important Updates

2021 Exam Information
AP Exams will cover the full content in each course, giving students the opportunity to receive college credit and placement.

Given the uncertainties of the 2020-21 school year, some students may feel unsure about taking AP Exams in May. So that students feel comfortable registering by the fall deadline, this year there will be no fees whatsoever if a student decides not to test or to cancel their exams. Every AP student should keep their options open by registering for the exam on time because there will still be a $40 fee for late orders.

View the latest information on testing.

AP Questions and Feedback Throughout the Year
AP practice exams and past exam questions are available in the AP Classroom question bank. Personal progress checks are also available to ensure your students build mastery of content and skills. The progress dashboard highlights progress for every student and class across units.

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Exam Overview

Exam questions assess the course concepts and skills outlined in the course framework. For more information on exam weighting and scoring, download the AP U.S. Government and Politics Course and Exam Description (CED).

Encourage your students to visit the AP U.S. Government and Politics student page for exam information and exam practice.

  • Event
    • MON, MAY 3, 2021, 8 AM LOCAL

    AP U.S. Government and Politics Exam Day

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Exam Format

The AP U.S. Government and Politics Exam has consistent question types, weighting, and scoring guidelines every year, so you and your students know what to expect on exam day.

 Section 1: Multiple Choice

55 Questions | 1 Hour 20 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

  • Individual questions (no stimulus): ~30
  • Set-based questions
    • Quantitative Analysis: Analysis and application of quantitative-based source material
    • Qualitative Analysis: Analysis and application of text-based (primary and secondary) sources
    • Visual Analysis: Analysis and application of qualitative visual information

Section 2: Free Response

4 Questions | 1 Hour 40 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

  • Concept Application: Respond to a political scenario, describe and explain the effects of a political institution, behavior, or process
  • Quantitative Analysis: Analyze quantitative data, identify a trend or pattern, or draw a conclusion from a visual representation and explain how it relates to a political principle, institution, process, policy, or behavior
  • SCOTUS Comparison: Compare a nonrequired Supreme Court case with a required Supreme Court case, explaining how information from the required case is relevant to the nonrequired one
  • Argument Essay: Develop an argument in the form of an essay, using evidence from required foundational documents and course concepts

 

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

2020 Free-Response Questions

Sign in to AP Classroom to access resources including the 2020 free-response questions, personal progress checks, the question bank, and practice exams aligned to the current course.

If your students answered free-response questions on the AP Exam in 2020, you can access their responses in the Student Response Portal. Learn more about how to access 2020 FRQs and students’ exam responses.

To preserve the large number of new FRQs for teacher use, only teachers have access to the 2020 FRQs. If you are a higher education faculty member interested in seeing questions, please fill out this request form.

2019 Free-Response Questions

For free-response questions (FRQs) from the 2019 exam, along with scoring information, check out the table 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 AP Reading leadership to explain 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.

Past Exam Questions and Scoring Information

For free-response questions and scoring information from the 2018 and earlier exams, visit Past Exam Questions.