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Home > AP Courses and Exams > AP Exam Information > The AP Comparative Government and Politics Exam

The AP Comparative Government and Politics Exam

Exam Day 2017

Thurs, May 11, 8 a.m.

Exam Duration

2 hours, 25 minutes

Exam Overview

The exam measures students' knowledge of the course's six core countries (China, Great Britain, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, and Russia) and their ability to compare and contrast political regimes; electoral systems; federal structures; civil rights; and state responses to economic, social, and religious challenges over time.

Encourage your students to visit the AP Comparative Government and Politics student page for exam information and exam practice.

Access online score reports for your students.

Policies

Learn about late testing policies, and see all late testing dates.

Exam Format

Section I

Multiple Choice — 55 Questions | 45 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

Questions will focus on the core countries of the course: China, Great Britain, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, and Russia. The portion of multiple-choice questions covering each topic area is:

  • Introduction to Comparative Politics (5%)
  • Sovereignty, Authority, and Power (20%)
  • Political Institutions (35%)
  • Citizens, Society, and the State (15%)
  • Political and Economic Change (15%)
  • Public Policy (10%)

This outline is a guide — it is not a complete list of topics or a preferred order of topics.

Section II

Free Response — 8 Questions | 1 Hour, 40 Minutes | 50% of Exam Score

The free-response section contains three types of questions:

  • Type I: Short Answer; 5 questions
    • These questions ask students to define concepts from the course topic outline and provide supporting information from the core countries of the course.
  • Type II: Conceptual; 1 question
    • This question requires analysis and is about a major concept from the course topic outline.
  • Type III: Country Specific; 2 questions
    • These questions ask students to provide specific information and analysis of the core countries from the course.

While there is no time limit for each type of question, we recommend that students spend 25 minutes total on the five Type I questions, 25 minutes on the Type II question, and 50 minutes total on the two country-specific questions.

Review how additional examples are scored (.pdf/116KB).

This AP Exam formats document (.pdf/114 KB) shows how this year's format compares to last year's.

Exam Questions and Scoring Information

Looking for sample multiple-choice and free-response questions? You can find them in:

The Course Description (.pdf/1.38MB), which has everything you need to know about the course and exam.


A full practice exam on AP Course Audit. Log in to your account and then click on the Secure Documents link within the Resources section of your Course Status page.


A 2007 Released Exam, available through your AP Course Audit account.


The Student Performance Q&A. In this invaluable resource, the Chief Reader of the AP Exam compiles feedback from members of the reading leadership to describe how students performed on the FRQs, summarize typical student errors, and address specific concepts and content with which students have struggled the most that year.

And for free-response questions from prior exams, along with scoring information, check out the tables below.

 



2016: Free-Response Questions
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Sample Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

 
2015: Free-Response Questions
Questions Scoring Samples and Commentary Score Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics

Sample Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

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 Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

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 Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

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 Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

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 Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Sample Response Q5

Sample Response Q6

Sample Response Q7

Sample Response Q8

Score Distributions

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

Sample Responses Q4

Sample Responses Q5

Sample Responses Q6

Sample Responses Q7

Sample Responses Q8

Score Distributions

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

Sample Responses Q4

Sample Responses Q5

Sample Responses Q6

Sample Responses Q7

Sample Responses Q8

Grade Distributions

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

Sample Responses Q4

Sample Responses Q5

Sample Responses Q6

Sample Responses Q7

Sample Responses Q8

Grade Distributions

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

Sample Responses Q4

Sample Responses Q5

Sample Responses Q6

Sample Responses Q7

Sample Responses Q8

Grade Distributions

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

Sample Responses Q4

Sample Responses Q5

Sample Responses Q6

Sample Responses Q7

Sample Responses Q8

Grade Distributions

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

2004: Free-Response Questions
Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Student Performance Q&A

Scoring Statistics

Sample Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Grade Distributions

2003: Free-Response Questions
Questions Scoring Samples Grade Distributions

Free-Response Questions

Scoring Guidelines

Scoring Commentary

Scoring Statistics

Sample Response Q1

Sample Response Q2

Sample Response Q3

Sample Response Q4

Grade Distributions

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