Tips from a Fullerton AP Tutor: 5 Ways to Ace AP World History


Students have been back from winter break for a while but are probably not yet thinking about the AP tests they will take in the spring. Realistically, students should start thinking about a game plan for how they are going to achieve a 3 or better on their AP tests, especially if they are taking more than one advanced placement course or if they’re also planning to take the SAT or ACT this spring. One of the most common AP courses student take is World History. It’s important for students to remember certain things and be able to analyze text thoroughly enough to write several essays on the topic – our private Fullerton AP tutors are here to help. The main issue is that students are expected to know about the history of several different countries throughout time. So how can a student ace their AP World History class?

1. Compare and contrast

A skill that every student should master is how to compare and contrast different elements of history. They might be comparing two cultures, two different wars or conflicts, or two different periods of time but it’s something they will have to do over and over. Comparing and contrasting in an advanced placement course goes beyond making a list of similarities and differences. Students should be able to ask and answer the question, why? Why did a particular civilization behave in a certain way? Why did they want to expand their territory? Why did the civilization fall? Students who are having trouble getting started can fall back on the tried-and-true method of analysis: who, what, when, where, why, and how.

2. Take detailed notes

It’s essential for AP World History students to take detailed notes during class or any one-on-one tutoring sessions they may have. There are so many different cultures and time periods covered in this specific course that it’s easy to get mixed up or confused about one thing or another. Students who have trouble taking efficient notes are encouraged to start by referring back to a page number and paragraph they can look at when they want to study. Students should also discuss any note-taking issues with their tutor so they can work together to come up with the most efficient system that works for the particular student (READ: 5 Ways to Start Prepping for AP Exams).

3. Cause and effect

Cause and effect is also an essential component of any history class, especially AP World History. Students need to be able to find out why a particular event took place. What was the cause? Was there a conflict or argument over land or wealth? Was one culture offended by an interaction with another? Was there miscommunication? Etc. If students look through their world history book, they will notice that certain cycles tend to occur over and over again. Hence the famous phrase, history repeats itself. Students who can truly understand the details of cause-and-effect are more likely to ace their exam in May.

4. Dates and timelines

Memorizing dates is one of the more tedious elements of taking a history course, but it is really important. There are certain dates students will just have to memorize because they’re on the test but, more importantly, they want to know the order that events took place. For instance, the stock market crash of 1929 was followed by the Great Depression of the 1930s. Or, the Declaration of Independence in 1776 was followed by the American Revolutionary War.

Don’t fall behind in your AP courses! Our private Fullerton AP tutoring will help you score high on the exam.

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