AP TEST FORMAT - The Long Essay

APUSH HISTORY REASONING SKILLS EXPLANATION

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Continuity and Change Examples

Compare and Contrast Examples

Causes and Effects Examples

Turning Points Examples

 

The Long Essay is what you might consider a standard essay. You will be given a question, and might have to consider how history changed, or remained the same over time. Or, perhaps it’s an essay targeting the skill of comparison, or causation. Nonetheless, this essay will need a thesis and historical evidence to support that thesis. Your goal is to persuade the reader that your thesis is sound and well-supported by historical facts. Introduction and conclusion paragraphs are required.  You will be graded out of 6 points. You will write one of three choices (Periods 1-3, 4-6, or 7-9). Each choice will address both the same theme and reasoning skill.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your Score on the LONG ESSAY breaks down as follows:

 

Point 1 - Thesis

Similar to the DBQ, you must have an original thesis that reflects all parts of the task and the skill being targeted. If you just copy the statement they give you then ... SORRY!

NOTE: They may ask you to “Support, Modify, or Refute” a question. If this happens, on say, a “turning point” question:

 

Support Thesis: The New Deal was a turning point because...

Modify Thesis: Although the New Deal was a turning point because..., it also cannot be considered one, as...

Refute Thesis: The New Deal was not a turning point because...

 

NOTE: You can do any of three. If you choose to “Modify,” this might give you an opportunity to write more and show you can understand both sides of the argument!

 

Point 2 - Contextualization

Similar to what was seen with the DBQ, you must show contextualization.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Points 3-4 - Evidence

You must argue your thesis. The degree to which you argue the thesis with specific and relevant evidence will determine if you get 0, 1, or 2 points. The more analysis, explanation, and linkage between evidence and thesis, the more likely you are to succeed.  Therefore, it is recommended that you write a lot! Show all you know! This is where studying comes in. For the long essay, you should be examining major concepts and time periods more so than the miniscule facts. Although you shouldn’t get an essay devoted only to Macon’s Bill #2, you might get one that is relevant to Jeffersonian ideology and early political parties.

 

Points 5-6 – Analysis and Reasoning

You need to dig deep to get both points. You could use evidence to corroborate, modify, or qualify the argument addressed by the question. You also should have a deep and complex understanding of the history and skill in the prompt. See the DBQ information for more on Analysis and Reasoning, and Complex Understanding.

 





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