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The AP Psychology Exam

Exam Overview

AP PSYCHOLOGY EXAM: 2 HOURS

The AP Psychology Exam measures students' knowledge of the 14 key topics and fields of study in psychology and tests their ability to define, compare, and apply concepts and research findings. Questions are based on key terminology, scientific methodology, and theories associated with each subfield.

Free-response questions may require students to interrelate different content areas and to analyze and evaluate psychological constructs and, more generally, theoretical perspectives.

A note about the DSM and the AP Psychology Exam

The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) was published in May 2013 with revisions to the criteria for the diagnosis and classifications of mental disorders.

Beginning with the 2015 AP Psychology Exam, all terminology, criteria and classifications referred to among multiple-choice and free-response items will adhere to the new fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5).

Format of Assessment

Section I: Multiple Choice | 100 Questions | 70 Minutes | 66.6% of Exam Score

  • Define and explain content from a range of course topics
  • Apply skills of comparison and interpretation to course concepts, theories, and scientific methods

Section II: Free Response | 2 Questions | 50 Minutes | 33.3% of Exam Score

  • Analyze a unique scenario using concepts from different theoretical frameworks or sub domains in the field (Free-Response Question Type 1)
  • Design, analyze, or critique a study (Free-Response Question Type 2)

Multiple-Choice Questions

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

Free-Response Questions

The free-response questions evaluate students' mastery of scientific research principles and their ability to make connections among constructs from different psychological domains. Students may be asked to analyze a general problem in psychology (e.g., depression, adaptation) using concepts from different theoretical frameworks or subdomains in the field, or they may be asked to design, analyze, or critique a research study.

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


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

Scoring Guidelines


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
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
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
 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
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
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
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
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
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
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 Responses Q1 Sample Responses Q2 Grade Distributions


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
Grade Distributions


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