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The AP English Language and Composition Exam

Exam Overview

AP ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND COMPOSITION EXAM: 3 HOURS 15 MINUTES

The AP English Language and Composition Exam employs multiple-choice questions to test students skills in rhetorical analysis of prose passages. Students are also required to write three essays that demonstrate their skill in rhetorical analysis, argumentation, and synthesis of information from multiple sources to support the students own argument. Although the skills tested on the exam remain essentially the same from year to year, there may be some variation in format of the free-response (essay) questions.

Format of Assessment

Section I: Multiple Choice: 52-55 Questions | 60 Minutes | 45% of Exam Score

  • Includes excerpts from several non-fiction texts
  • Each excerpt is accompanied by several multiple-choice questions

Section II: Free Response: 3 Free-Response Questions | 2 Hours 15 Minutes | 55% of Exam Score

  • 15 minutes for reading source materials for the synthesis prompt (in the free-response section)
  • 120 minutes to write essay responses to the 3 free-response questions

Prompt Types

  • Synthesis: Students read several texts about a topic and create an argument that synthesizes at least three of the sources to support their thesis.
  • Rhetorical Analysis: Students read a non-fiction text and analyze how the writers language choices contribute to his or her purpose and intended meaning for the text.
  • Argument: Students create an evidence-based argument that responds to a given topic.

Multiple-Choice Questions

For sample multiple-choice questions, refer to the Course Description.

Free-Response Questions

Below are free-response questions from past AP English Language and Composition Exams.

Free-Response Questions 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 1999-2003



2016: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

     



2015: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2014: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2013: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2012: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics

Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2011: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics

Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2011: Form B

Questions

Scoring

Samples and Commentary

Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3



2010: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions
Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Score Distributions



2010: Form B

Questions

Scoring

Samples and Commentary

Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3



2009: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions 

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions



2009: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions 

Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3





2008: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions



2008: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3



2007: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions



2007: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3



2006: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions



2006: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3



2005: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Grade Distributions



2005: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary
Sample Responses



2004: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions



2004: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
 



2003: Free-Response Questions

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
Grade Distributions
* Note: The third sample response has been replaced with the appropriate text (EE).



2003: Form B

Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions
Free-Response Questions Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary
Sample Responses Q1
Sample Responses Q2
Sample Responses Q3
 



Important Note: PDF Files

The links to exam questions for this course are in Adobe® PDF format, and you will need to use the Adobe® Acrobat® Reader® to view them. If you don't have Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher installed on your computer, choose the link for the Adobe Web site below for installation instructions.

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