One of the biggest mistakes that AP test-takers can make is overconfidence, and the place that you are most likely to be overconfident is on multiple choice questions. This issue is especially true for AP Human Geography multiple-choice questions. AP Human Geography can be a bit tricky, so it’s important to make sure that you are ready for the entire test. Use this helpful guide to make sure you’re prepared to take on the AP Human Geography exam and max out your score.
To understand the importance of learning how to approach AP Human Geography multiple choice questions, it is necessary to understand the format of the exam. The test has two sections, multiple choice and free response. The breakdown looks like this:
|Section||Questions||Time||% of Score|
|Section I – Multiple Choice||75||60 minutes||50|
|Section II – Free Response||3||75 minutes||50|
You can find further details on the CollegeBoard’s official site for the test.
As you can see, you will answer far more multiple choice questions than free response questions, and the multiple choice section is worth just as much, 50%, as the free response questions are. Given this, why do students focus so much on free response?
The multiple choice section is important because it counts for 50% of the scaled score for the test. Moreover, the multiple choice section will cover far more topics than the free response section does. As a result, it should be given equal priority if you are going to maximize your score. Moreover, as you can see from this scoring guide from the 2008 AP Human Geography test, the number of questions you get correct has a strong influence on your score.
On this particular exam, the number of multiple choice questions was multiplied by a weight of .8108. The result was added to a weighted chart to produce the final 1-5 composite score. In consequence, getting a 100% on the multiple choice section would earn you a 4 even if you didn’t answer any free response questions. Getting 75% of the multiple choice test assures you a 3 without adding the free response score. As you can see, this means that there is a lot of help to be had by doing well on the multiple choice section. Should you get 75% correct, a middle C on most school system grading scales, then getting two points on each free response question, out of a total of nine, eight, and six respectively, will earn you a 4.
That may be a lot of math to consider for a Geography exam, but understanding how your final score is reached is essential to understanding the importance of the AP Human Geography multiple-choice section. Doing well on the multiple choice section makes getting the max score of 5 much more achievable.
AP Human Geography multiple-choice questions cover a wide array of topics. They can ask you to define a term from any point in the class, they can ask you to pick the best explanation of geographical phenomena, and they can ask you to apply concepts you learned to geographical issues. Additionally, the multiple-choice section will present you with various graphic data and ask you questions about what that data means and how it relates to different geographical concepts.
For example, the test can ask you about human migration patterns, terms of art, theories, and models. It might ask you what theory best explains a particular migration pattern, or what concept a certain migration example demonstrates.
The best way to prepare for AP Human is to go beyond looking for simple AP Human Geography tips. Instead, you should organize and execute an AP Human Geography study plan. Developing a plan will allow you to make sure that you cover everything you need to and give yourself extra time to go over concepts that you did not perform as well on during the year. Your plan should include a list of all of the topics in the class, with the important concepts in each topic listed as sub-points. The next step is to note which concepts you struggled with the most. Take this information and apply it to a calendar, making sure that you give yourself enough space to try the AP Human Geography practice questions on all the topics that you need a little extra time on.
Having a plan is important, but you also need to make sure that you have the proper resources to execute on your plan. An AP Human Geography study guide can be essential in that regard. You may also look into other AP Human Geography test prep materials.
One area that people tend to have problems with is keeping all of the terms straight and remember what information goes with what theory. Flashcards are one way to deal with this. Another tip is to write or say out loud sentences that use the terms you’re learning when you see an example of them in your daily life. For example, when you travel, identify different areas of your town as they relate to various explanations of urban development.
The best way to approach AP Human Geography multiple choice questions is not by looking immediately for the correct answer, as you might expect. Instead, you should first work to eliminate all of the wrong answers. First, remove answers related to concepts that are not relevant to the question you’re answering. Next, you should eliminate answers that relate to the question being asked but make a mistake or fail to sufficiently cover the question. Finally, you should be left with the correct answer or at least have it narrowed down to two choices, which makes your task much easier.
In addition to using the process of elimination to help narrow down the possible answers, you should also test your answers. This effect can be achieved by making sure that you have the ability to explain why your answer is, in fact, an answer to the question being asked. If you can do this, then you can be confident that it is time to move on to the next question. A bonus of using this strategy during your prep is that it also helps you get ready for free response questions.
Sometimes you will find yourself choosing between two different answers. The best way to approach this situation is by asking yourself how this question would be worded to make each answer correct. The wording of the ideal question for each answer will give you a strong clue as to which is better. The wording that is closest to the actual question is most likely the correct choice.
Finally, make sure that your AP Human Geography practice includes a diverse selection of multiple choice questions from each unit of material. Practice is the best way to make sure that you can move through the questions at a fast enough pace to answer them all in time. This is especially important as there are 75 questions but only 60 minutes, which means you need to answer more than one question per minute to get to them all.
AP Human Geography multiple-choice questions will ask the question and then give a list of 5 multiple choice options. A typical question about population distribution factors might look like this:
Which of the following statements accurately describes how various factors affect population density?
(A) Limited job opportunities cause some areas around the globe to be more densely populated.
(B) Social interactions and urbanization have limited impact on population density.
(C) Population density is dependent on the development of transportation systems.
(D) Population is evenly distributed across space, physical features, and landforms.
(E) Areas with extreme climates tend to be more densely populated.
This question provides a good illustration of some of the concepts explained above. Choice D is an excellent example of something that is related to the question but contains incorrect information, as is choice E. This question also demonstrates the sort of concepts that the test might ask about, and the way that it would ask you to approach those concepts.
The following question is an example of a question about economic organization.
Which of the following is an example of a quinary-sector economic activity?
(A) Working at a cash register at McDonald’s.
(B) Serving as a researcher for human genetic cloning.
(C) Serving on the U.S. president’s cabinet.
(D) Converting crude oil into gasoline.
(E) Plowing land in preparation for planting a crop.
This question demonstrates the format of tasks that ask you to prove that you understand a term by giving an example of the term in question. Additionally, this question demonstrates how difficult an AP Human Geography multiple-choice question can be. You not only have to know what economic sector the question is asking about, but also provide an example of activity in that sector. Given the number of different descriptions of economic activity covered in AP Human Geography, it can be easy to get confused as to which theory is being asked about, and thus, what activity best applies.
There are some different ways that you can practice the AP Human Geography multiple-choice section. The first and most direct way is by accessing and taking past copies of the multiple-choice section. However, when it comes to AP Human Geography, these can be hard to find. Thankfully, there are some AP Human Geography prep resources available online. There are also lots of helpful articles that will assist you in covering areas that you might not feel as confident in when it comes to your ability to handle the material effectively.
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