Section I of the AP Psychology Exam contains 100 multiple-choice questions that cover 9 units of the AP Psychology course.
You have 70 minutes to complete this section, and it counts for two-thirds of your overall score.
The time limit gives you less than a minute to answer each question.
Section I of the AP Psychology Exam does not require you to work through all of the questions.
Smart testers don't try to attempt every question.
Smart testers choose which questions to tackle and which questions to guess on.
Let's take a closer look at how the test is set up.
If you've taken the SAT, you'll know that the questions are easy to answer when you start a multiple-choice section.
The test becomes more difficult after a while.
Near the end of the test, you may feel overwhelmed because you don't know any of the answers.
Many students attribute this phenomenon to time pressure or exhaustion.
There is something else going on.
The AP Psychology Exam has questions in a rough order of difficulty.
The first part of the test contains mostly easy questions, the middle of the test contains questions of medium difficulty, and the last third of the exam contains difficult questions.
The company is trying to assess the psychology knowledge of thousands of students.
If they put all the hard questions at the beginning of the test, a lot of students with good, but not great, psychology knowledge would get stuck on the early questions and never get to the questions they could answer.
They would lose time, have trouble building momentum, and get bogged down.
The results would show two groups, one with a high score and one with a low score, as opposed to a nice bell curve, where most students score somewhere around the middle.
Everyone starts answering easy questions when the test is arranged in a certain order.
Students begin to have trouble when they hit a point on the test.
The stumbling point shows where a student's knowledge of a subject ends, according to companies that write standardized tests.
A test in order of difficulty creates a more fair test for everyone.
Difficult questions are worth more than easy questions.
To score well on Section I, you need to slow down and get as many easy and medium questions right as you can.
"Do The Right Thing" will be shown later in this chapter.
In Chapter 3, we will discuss how to pace yourself to maximize your score.
We will show you some specific multiple-choice strategies.
The raw scores are not reported to you.
The final score ranged from 1 to 5.
In other words, no one will ever know that you got an AP Psych Grade of 5, but only 75 percent of the Section I questions were correct.
It's the final grade that matters, so take the test the smart way.
The key to doing well is your own knowledge of psychology, but certain strategies will help you stretch your knowledge and crack the harder questions.
We'll talk about how you can develop your own approach to Section I once you've mastered some of the smart-tester strategies.
Making sure you understand what you are being asked is the most important thing you can do to increase your score.
Make sure you understand the question after you read it.
The key words in the question can be put in your own words or circled.
The first step will eliminate the chance of you answering the wrong thing.
When someone doesn't want to accept bad news, they are in.
The answer should be obvious.
The answer pops out at you when you say this question in everyday language.
If you don't know the answer off the top of your head, clarifying the question makes you better prepared to deal with the answer choices.
You don't need to say the question into your own words.
When you hit the answer choices, you want to make sure you look for the right thing.
Before you head to the answer choices, circle the key words dependent variable.
Circle the key words in the question.
Write down exactly what is being asked in your own words.
Answers are on.
She is interested in the physical basis of psychological phenomena such as motivation, emotion, and stress.
There is a list of words.
She only remembers the words from the beginning and the end of the list.
Veronica is a gymnast.
As she waits for her turn on the mat, she ignores the sounds of the crowd and reviews her routine.
You should check the question number when you start a question.
It will tell you how hard the question is.
The questions in this book have been numbered to reflect their difficulty.
Everyone would get all the questions right.
You have to do some work before you get stuck in the answer choices.
About 30 percent of the questions on Section I ask you to use your knowledge of psychology to address a given situation.
If you understand the question first, application questions are not a problem.
Answer choices aren't our friends.
Think about what it takes for a test writer to come up with five answer choices for each question.
She needs to make sure the answer is correct and not too obvious.
She needs to put in at least one or two second choices.
She needs to fill in the remaining choices and move on to the next question.
When taking a standardized test, most students read the question and choose their answer.
They don't realize that the answer choices are filled with tricks, traps, and distractors that are designed to get them off course.
You are a smart tester.
If you have an idea of the answer before you read the answer choices, you won't be tempted to pick something that is off base.
It's best to assume that an answer is wrong until proven right, because four of the five choices you read are wrong.
Answer the question in your own words after you translate it.
In the case of denial, that may mean knowing the exact answer, or it may mean putting yourself in the right place before looking at the answer choices.
It's helpful to cover the answer choices to make your best guess.
Look at the choices and see which is closest to your original thought.
She is interested in the physical basis of psychological phenomena such as motivation, emotion, and stress.
Maybe you know the answer to the question, and maybe you don't.
Before you look at the answer choices, you can still answer the question.
A person who is into the physical basis of psychology is called Angie.
Look at each answer choice with your answer in mind.
The person is interested in more than just the physical basis.
An anthropologist is interested in cultures.
The person is not interested in psychology.
No one knows what this person is.
You were able to avoid getting tripped up in the first three answer choices if you had predicted the answer to the question.
You realized the answer had to be a biopsychologist, without knowing anything about a paleontologist.
The Process of Elimination is your next big strategy.
POE means eliminating wrong answer choices and then choosing from what you have left.
Four of the five answer choices are incorrect.
Most of the answers on the test are wrong.
Sometimes it's easier to identify two or three wrong answers on a question than it is to find the right answer.
By getting rid of two or three wrong answer choices, you have increased your accuracy and guessing power.
Understanding cognitive processes.
An example of how people think and learn can be found.
Cross it off when you decide an answer isn't the one you want.
Don't forget to read the rest.
You could easily narrow your choices down to (C) or (E) by using POE.
You should compare your choices once you have it down to two.
The answer is (E).
Knowledge of fact, not of mental processes, is the only way to understand the role of various parts of the brain in perception.
The word understanding was used in a different way.
You were able to escape the trap by using POE.
Only a small percentage of test-takers would answer the question correctly.
If this is a very hard question, you can either skip it or come back to it if you have time.
Don't underestimate your knowledge.
You can pull the word apart if you don't know the definition of metacognition.
If you have been in the class for more than a week, you know that thinking has something to do with cognition.
You should recall how the meta was used.
There's thinking and meta- thinking, as well as physics and metaphysics.
It's probably a higher level of thinking.
The rough definition will help you cross off some answer choices that will help you make an educated guess.
Take the question and put it into your own words.
Circle any words or phrases that might point you in the right direction.
You can come up with your own answer to the question.
The third strategy is the process of elimination.
Pick the best match.
Let's say you read a question and don't know the answer.
You can use your brain, information in the question, and POE to get to the answer.
Wrong answers are designed to confuse, not assist.
Don't look at the answer choices too soon, follow your smart strategy.
Let's start with smart strategies for question 74.
Circle the words intelligence and inherited to understand the question.
Predict the answer if you don't know.
Simply use what you know.
Leave this choice and go on.
It means that the nongenetic factors are more significant.
Siblings come from one egg, while siblings come from two, making them less similar.
Keep this answer choice and read on.
No, it shows the opposite of nature.
It also means nurture over nature.
It's pretty cool that you narrowed it down to two choices without even knowing the answer.
Look at the two choices you have not made.
Choice shows that genetics affects smarts.
You have it: (C).
Maybe you don't spend a lot of time on every question, but take an educated guess on those you work on, and choose the same letter for all those you have no idea on or don't have time for.
If you're left with two very hard answer choices, just choose one and move on.
There is no penalty for guessing.
You need to work efficiently and effectively if you want to do well on the test.
You have to choose a pace that is efficient and effective for you.
It doesn't matter if your best friend can complete the entire section in 30 minutes.
You need to work at a pace that will allow you to ask as many questions as you can.
You will do your best if you set your own pace.
It's a bad idea to rush through the test and get easy questions wrong.
This is a timed test, and you need to complete a lot of questions to do well.
The best way to determine your own pace is to work efficiently and get right what you say.
Although you don't want to rush through and make careless errors, you don't want to spend all day on one question.
You can get questions right without dragging your heels by working at a fast pace.
If you find yourself stuck over a question, make a decision and move on.
Let's take a closer look at the order of difficulty to see if we can help you with this idea of working efficiently and effectively.
It won't be easy for you if you don't know anything about the question.
If you know the topic well, the last third of the test will be easy for you.
You can use your smart strategies effectively.
You will be able to do these steps quickly on easy questions.
The questions will take very little time to answer.
Try this drill and be careful.
Write down your start time.
When you are done, note your end time and check your answers for accuracy.
The goal is to be efficient and effective.
Let's see if we can drive those smart-tester strategies.
A person trying to overcome a heroin addiction is experiencing side effects.
To check your answers, turn to.
If you missed a question, you were working too fast.
Points should not be thrown away on easy questions.
The easier the test is, the more psychology you have.
To keep you from missing answers to questions that you should be getting right, the strategies you are learning are designed.
Strategies will help you stretch your knowledge so you can answer questions about topics you don't know much about.
Strategies won't make a question on a completely unfamiliar topic easy, although they will help you make smart guesses.
Most of your test time will be spent on the medium questions.
These are the questions that you will know, but will need to answer very carefully so you don't lose points to tricks and traps.
Try the next five questions as you did on the previous drill, working more slowly but still efficiently and effectively, using the strategies that we've been discussing throughout this chapter.
To determine the number of students in the school who own personal computers, a school bookstore surveys the introductory computer science class.
Look to see how you did this time.
No big deal if you missed a question.
You were working too fast if you missed more than one question.
Pick up your accuracy by slowing your pace.
Some questions on the medium drill have longer answers than others.
Every seven or so questions in the earlier sections of the test will have a long answer question.
Near the later part of the test, a long-answer question will occur more frequently.
A test writer can make a question more difficult by throwing in long answer choices.
Take Section I and imagine yourself doing it.
Feel fine, you're cruising through the easy section.
You hit a speedbump.
Question 10 seems to be much harder than you would think.
No order of difficulty is perfect for each individual, especially on an exam that is testing each individual's knowledge of a particular subject.
Chances are it's a question about a topic you don't know very well.
You should take the test in the order that is best for you.
Circle it and come back if you have time.
If you are completely lost, make sure to bubble in a response through POE and common sense, or your Letter of the Day.
Make sure that you get as many points as you can from the easy and medium portions of the test by working efficiently and effectively.
You should work your way through the most challenging questions with your remaining time.
You can be certain that you have entered the most difficult third of the test if you pass question 70.
Even without looking at the question number, you can tell when you've hit the difficult third because it requires a lot more brainpower than before.
Do the right thing.
If the question is about a topic that you are not familiar with, it will be difficult to answer.
If you know a topic well, a question about it in the difficult portion of the test is not difficult.
If you are familiar with the topic, you should read the questions first.
Draw a box around it so you can come back to it if it sounds Greek.
Proceed with caution if you are familiar with the topic.
The question was placed late in the test because it is more difficult than the rest.
Understand the Question/Key Words, Predict the Answer, and POE are smart-tester strategies.
If you don't know which one is correct, make a smart guess and move on.
You are a lot better off than you were when you started.
Sometimes you don't have enough to answer a question, but you are familiar with it.
In addition to using your usual strategy, you can also use your common sense, and the information you have, to use POE and take a smart guess.
Let's assume you don't know what Hans Selye's general adaptation syndrome is.
You can use common sense to get close to the answer, and still follow the smart strategy.
It's a syndrome, which means something negative, and it has something to do with adapting.
Predict the stages of adaptation that appear to be a kind of syndrome.
A syndrome wouldn't end up in self-control.
This is the best choice so far.
A syndrome wouldn't have a last stage of adapting.
Don't let the word adapting throw you off.
The one has negative attributes that could be considered a syndrome.
You are left with (C) and (E).
Take a guess and remember that you narrowed your choices down to a fifty-fifty shot on a question that you had no idea about.
The correct answer is (C).
The "general adaptation syndrome" is not the best way to cause a fight, so (C) is your smarter guess.
The questions will be easier if you know more about psychology.
When you know the material and want to avoid careless errors and trap answers, using common sense and POE will help you.
Wait a minute.
Common sense can play an important role in getting rid of wrong answer choices.
Let's look at the two answer choices.
Personal conscience is innate and all human beings develop it at the same rate.
It is hard to imagine a psychologist suggesting that all human beings develop personal conscience at the same rate.
Common sense cannot be used to answer the question.
By adulthood, all people judge moral issues in terms of self-chosen principles.
It is rare that all people do the same thing, even if they judge moral issues in terms of self-chosen principles.
The extreme language of the answer choice can help determine if it is wrong.
You can eliminate two answer choices by using common sense.
You don't need to work through all of them when dealing with hard questions.
In what order you want to do the difficult questions is up to you.
The long-answer questions are more difficult than the short-answer questions, so you may want to focus on all of them after question 70.
Make sure to put a box around the questions you don't answer so that you can go back to them.
If you want to ask a particular question, mark it with a star.
You will score your best on Section I of the AP Psychology Exam if you develop your own optimal strategy.
The strategy drills in Chapter 4 will help you fine-tune your skills, so use the tools we have given you.
Once you are comfortable with your question strategy, do some timed work to help determine your pacing strategy.
Continue to finish more and more of Section I as you improve your test-taking skills.
Working efficiently and effectively means something to you.
You have an essay portion that will contribute to your final grade.