The second and final section, Free Response, contains a third of the points on the AP Psychology exam.
Section II is where you'll get your goal score on Test Day.
Everything you need to know about answering free-response questions is covered in this chapter.
There are two free-response questions on your AP Psychology exam.
A bulleted list of seven terms that you will be asked to define and apply to a given scenario is typically provided by the Concept Application question.
The Research Design question will ask questions about the experiment.
The questions following the Research Design scenario are a little more varied than those in the Concept Application question.
Some Research Design questions will ask you to apply psychology content as in the first type, but others may ask you to describe features or flaws of the experiment, and still others could ask you to conduct some data analysis or reach conclusions based on provided results.
The multiple-choice questions on the AP Psychology exam are similar to the free-response questions, but they are more explicit about what you need to do to get points.
A paragraph that describes the context for the question is what the Concept Application and Research Design prompt will begin with.
Instructions on a task or set of tasks that you need to complete are always followed by this.
The bullet points will tell you what to write about, while the task will tell you how to discuss it.
The number of parts may vary, but there will always be a total of 7 raw points available for each question, which will be multiplied to yield a score out of 25.
To get all 7 of those points, you must complete all the tasks.
There are a limited number of tasks that the exam requires.
You only need to name a specific concept and connect it to the prompt for a task that uses the verbs identify.
An example of the concept that's relevant to the prompt is required by a task.
A task that requires you to describe, show, or illustrate a concept or theory requires you to define the term and apply it to the prompt.
A task that uses discuss, relate, or explain requires you to go into greater depth about a particular concept or theory, possibly making connections to other ideas in your response.
Regardless of the task, you will need to apply a theory or concept to the specific situation in the prompt.
When you're not sure about a bullet point, give it your best shot and you may end up saying enough to earn you the point.
Don't contradict anything you say elsewhere in your response, and avoid common misconception, which can cause you to lose a point that you'd otherwise gain.
Now that you know what you need to do to get those points, it's time to consider how you do it.
You only have 50 minutes for all of Section II, so you only have 25 minutes per question.
You have more time for the harder question if you finish it in less than 25 minutes.
Don't just start writing, take a few minutes to create a plan for your response.
You don't have to follow the order provided by the list of tasks.
Sometimes listed terms can be regrouped out of order and discussed together, so it is helpful to sketch out a brief outline on scratch paper to work out how you will complete each sub task successfully.
You are ready to begin writing once you have a plan of attack on paper or in your head.
See the Concept Application sample question later in this chapter for an example of regrouping subtasks to better organize terms with similar meanings.
It's important to remember the difference between writing an essay and answering an AP Psychology FRQ.
Instructions regarding how to award points are given to the graders of your response.
The instructions tell you what is required for each point.
Nowhere in the rubric is it said to award points based on style or word choice, so your focus should be to answer the questions posed directly.
There are no separate introductory and conclusion paragraphs.
The exam explicitly discourages you from merely listing facts, so this is not to say that you should write a set of bullet points.
In order to make it easier to read, you should introduce the topics with no more than a sentence or two and group related concepts together in paragraphs.
See the sample responses in the next section for examples of how to do this.
When you're ready to start writing, be sure to follow the plan you laid out earlier.
If you don't know how to break up your response into paragraphs, use the existing structure of the question to guide you.
A three-part question could be written as three paragraphs, or you could split it into separate paragraphs for each of the question's bullet points.
Your paragraphs don't need to be great works of prose; you just need to put ideas into complete sentences that address all the bullet points and are clear enough for a grade to follow.
If the grader can't read it, it doesn't matter how eloquent or effective your response is.
Slow down and write more neatly if you have a tendency to make indecipherable script.
There are two sample FRQs that you can use for practice.
These are not the same as the practice exams contained in the book.
Although each question is followed by an example response that will earn you points, we encourage you to write your own response before viewing ours.
You can figure out how many points you would have scored with a similar question if you compared what you wrote to what we did.
A dog's owners buy a new bowl.
A car backfires when the dog approaches the bowl for the first time.
The frightened dog runs away from the bowl and won't approach it.
The dog timidly eats from the bowl as it is hungry later that day.
The dog stops showing distress and begins to eat from the bowl without fear over the next few days.
Explain how each concept relates to the scenario.
To respond to this kind of prompt, you need to define the terms and describe how they apply to the situation.
Researchers theorize that artificial stress has the same effect on performance as natural stress.
Participants are asked to toss bean bags at a target from a distance of 10 meters.
Each participant is allowed five tosses during the testing phase of the trials.
During the testing phase, the average distance from the center of the target is measured.
In the Practice condition, participants are given 30 minutes to practice; in the No Practice condition, subjects only participate in the testing phase.
Some participants are given an injection of adrenaline, which causes a moderate amount of stress prior to the testing phase.
In this study, identify the following.
The procedure for Group 4 needs to be changed to make it an appropriate control group.
The question is worth 7 points and 1 point for addressing each bullet.
Several principles of classical conditioning can be seen in this situation.
The fear response to the bowl is an example of accidental conditioning because the dog's approach to the bowl and the loud noise outside were unrelated, but were matched by the dog because they occurred at the same time.
extinction is the loss of a conditioned response over time when the unconditioned stimuli are no longer with the conditioned stimuli.
The learning happens because of specific biological processes.
The dog's fear response to loud noise is caused by the structure in the brain called the amygdala.
According to this theory, behavior is driven by needs.
Despite his fear, the dog used the bowl because of his need to reduce hunger.
The dog experiences an approach-avoidance conflict when eating from the bowl at the end of the first day because it is both appealing and frightening at the same time.
There are three variables in the experiment.
The amount of practice and the amount of stress are independent variables.
When a task is well-practiced and not well-practiced, a moderate amount of arousal is helpful.
A decrease in performance at low levels of practice is associated with high levels of arousal.
The researchers are studying the effects of arousal on performance after differing amounts of practice.
Group 4 could be made to perform a no-practice activity 30 minutes prior to testing to prevent the variable of time spent in the lab from being introduced.
They could receive a neutral injection to prevent the introduction of a variable of stress.
There is a possible response to Part C. Group 1 must perform better than Group 2, and Group 3 must perform better than Group 4 in order to earn credit.