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Stressing over AP Tests


Do you have friends in AP classes? Additionally, how often do they appear stressed? Or anxious? The upcoming AP tests this May are certain to make them feel worse. Even though AP classes come with a higher workload, they can be immensely interesting and worthwhile to a student’s future education path. To all prospective and current AP students, the following advice and opinions may help you get a step ahead in the classroom and on the test.

Although many of our respondents haven’t started studying, they plan to begin before the end of March. However, some students like senior Zephyr Levy “plan” to procrastinate. 

“I’ll probably start cramming about a week and a half before each one, and I’ll ace each of them,” Levy said. This senior is taking four APs, Statistics, Literature & Composition, Economics, and Biology, and plans to test for all but Lit. To pull off his impressive claim, he’ll neglect either test preparation or homework as May pulls closer. 

Senior Sasha Neyra found herself using this studying schedule last year, with only two weeks dedicated to preparation. Although coming out of the exams with impressive scores, Neyra suggests students take a different approach.

“Start preparing like a month and a half before, because all the information gets jumbled up in your brain when you try to cram it in,” Neyra said.

Levy uses ‘statistically’ backed methods to complete weekly work such as, “Staying up late trying to memorize key terms and events and graphs,” Levy admits this is a burden to his sleep schedule, but said he can “only remember things after 10 p.m.”

Despite these habits, Levy does have some helpful tips to offer as a participant in the 2022 AP European History test.

Levy said he recommended that students prepare by “making associations [between] dates for each of the events you are trying to remember. And just remember a few quick things about each one that you may be able to spit out.” 

Junior Amira Wanden took AP Euro last year and said she encourages current students to “Practice doing the essays, specifically […] in the right amount of time. Look at the rubric and just know exactly what you have to do.”

Of the two tests Levy took last year, he has opposite reviews. First, “AP Physics? Just don’t take it.” Levy said. “It’s one of the most painful tests I’ve ever taken in my life. I left one of the FRQs blank.” 

Levy noted the second, AP US History, was the easiest AP test he’s taken. As long as students maintain a deeper understanding of important events and their impacts, such as the Civil War and certain court cases, they’ll be fine. 

APUSH students, such as junior Kaia Caldwell, recommend the class based on its coverage of interesting material and Rosebrook’s teaching expertise, even though the class is fast-paced. 

“We’ve had a ton of differently formatted assignments, and I think that helps people who learn differently,” Caldwell said.

Senior Natalie Dreyer is also taking AP Bio, along with French, Government, and Computer Programming. Dreyer and Levy agree that Bio has the biggest workload.

“[We do] weekly content preparing for quizzes at the end of each week, case studies, labs, or any other kind of assignment,” Dreyer said.

To study for her first exam, “AP French people are going to do a little study group because you really have to talk to do it.” Dreyer said. 

Dreyer plans to integrate studying time after homework, or in any free time during school. Dreyer said possibly even in classes, “if it gets dire, down to the wire,” 

She recommends future seniors take AP Gov, “Pinkerton just has a way of drilling information into […] your thick skull,” Dreyer said. 

“His lectures are very interactive and thoughtful, you can tell he cares. If you don’t understand he’ll explain further,” Dreyer said the work he assigns mirrors lecture and textbook information to further solidify students’ grasp of topics. 

To study the Gov content she plans to review with friends, go over notes and assignments, do practice tests, and watch videos. 

“Seeing it visually and hearing it at the same time just makes sense for me,” Dreyer said.

For the one AP test Dreyer has taken before, Lang and Comp, Ms. Witten did a lot of essay preparation in class. After assessments, Dreyer would go over her writing to get a better feel for how to approach essays on the test, which she recommends students practice.

In the end, there are several keys to being a successful AP student. Keep up in class, complete assignments to retain the material, not just get them done, and communicate your learning needs with teachers.

“Stay on top of your work and it should be a breeze, and actually read the [textbooks] because they’re interesting,” Dreyer said.


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About the Contributor
Violet Fogg
Violet Fogg, A&E Section Editor
Violet Fogg is a 12th-grade student who enjoys expressing her creativity through art and writing. She has been writing creatively since primary and middle school, notably projects such as “Bread Cats” and “Gremlins” (co-written alongside friends and mostly done in the medium of gel pens). She has had experience in academic writing throughout high school, finding herself most proficient in creative and fictional writing. She also enjoys nonfiction writing and likes broadening her knowledge through this sort of reading. She likes authors such as David Sedaris, who combines short essays and memoirs with a comedic aspect. She plans to investigate areas of student interest around the school and pay specific attention to differing opinions and ideas brought up on campus.
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