Course Description AP United States History is a survey course covering American history from the Pre-Columbian period to the present. The class is taught in accordance with the AP US History Curriculum Framework and is designed to prepare students for the AP US History Exam in May.
Course Objectives The Advanced Placement program in American history is designed to provide students with the analytical skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with problems and resource materials in American history. The students should learn to assess historical sources – with respect to their relevance, reliability, and importance – and to weigh evidence and interpretations given by historians. An advanced placement history course develops skills necessary to arrive at conclusions on the basis of informed judgment and to present ideas clearly and persuasively. To some extent, the AP course is taught by college format, with emphasis on multi-media based lectures, independent reading, and graded writing assignments.
Textbook and Resources Kennedy, David and Lizabeth Cohen, The American Pageant, 16th ed. Boston: Wadsworth, Centgage Learning 2015 Kennedy, David and Thomas Baily. The American Spirit: United States History as seen through contemporaries. 13th ed. Boston: Centgage Learning 2014
Class Participation Participation in class is more than physical presence. It means making a meaningful contribution to discussions and course activities. Satisfactory class participation and cooperation is defined as being present with all required class materials, answering questions, offering constructive opinions, and generally cooperating with the teacher and other students in the class. To practice reflective thinking, you must take the risk of sharing your views and interpretations and receive feedback from others regarding the soundness of those views and interpretations. We construct knowledge and learn from each other, and if you don’t speak, others don’t learn from you [and vice versa]. You need to SHOW WHAT YOU KNOW!
The National Exam - May 2017 The Advanced Placement United States History exam requires students to apply historical thinking skills and knowledge of content as they respond, in writing, to new short-answer, document-based, and essay questions. Newly designed multiple-choice questions ask students to use their knowledge of content to analyze and interpret primary and secondary sources. The exam consists of the following sections, in order:
Fifty-five multiple-choice questions (55 minutes, 40 percent) Four short-answer questions (45 minutes, 20 percent) One document-based question (60 minutes, 25 percent) One long essay question (35 minutes, 15 percent)
Units of Study AP United States History is broken into 9 units. The time periods and content descriptions are as follows: Period 1 (1491-1607) Demographics of Europe, the Americas, and West Africa; Meso-American culture; transatlantic commerce, comparison of colonies across the Americas(religion, economies, politics, cultures);and foundations of slavery
Period 2 (1607-1754) European Colonization, American Indian resistance, economic and population patterns, formation of race and identity; and tensions with Britain
Period 3 (1754-1800) British colonial policies; enlightenment ideas; war for independence; formation of the republic and national identity; work and labor(free and unfree); and regional economic differences.
Period 4 (1800-1848) Definition of democratic practices; expansion of the vote; market revolution; territorial and demographic growth; two party system; Andrew Jackson; and role of the federal government in slavery and the economy.
Period 5 (1844-1877) Tensions over slavery; reform movements; imperialism; women and nonwhites; public education; Mexican/American War; public education; Civil War; and Reconstruction
Period 6 (1865-1898) Reconstruction; U.S. Imperialism, industrialization, immigration, and urbanization; women’s movement; and working class culture and leisure.
Period 7 (1890-1945) Progressive reform, radicalism; World War One and Russian Revolution; first red scare, first great migration of African Americans, race riots, culture wars of the 1920’s; Hoover and FDR in the capitalist crisis; New Deal; and World War Two.
Period 8 (1945-1980) Atomic Age and the Cold War; suburban development and the affluent society; the other America; Vietnam; social movement of the 1960’s; The Great Society programs; economic and political decline in the 1970’s; and the rise of conservatism.
Period 9 (1980-Present) Policies of Reagan at home and abroad; growth of poverty; Bush 41 and the end of the Cold War; Clinton and the Internet, Race relations, NAFTA and other trade agreements; 9/11/01; Patriot Act; education polices of Bush 43 and Obama; environmental policies.
*Each unit of study will address concept questions related to the time period. The concept questions are connected to the major themes that must be examined in each unit. The themes are as follows: American and National Identity Politics and Power Work, Exchange, and technology Culture and Society Migration and Settlement Geography and the Environment America in the World