About the Exam

General- Tuesday, May 12, 2020 at NOON

  1. Bring pencils with erasers AND blue or black pens.
  2. Bring a watch that does not beep.
  3. Do not wear any psychology related clothing.
  4. Do not bring anything else: books, papers, calculators, cell phones, etc.
  5. Relax before the exam. Last minute studying (5 min before) is NOT RECOMMENDED! Maybe look over difficult terms an hour before.
  6. Remember, a score of 5 is around 80%, while a 4 is around a 75% and a 3 is around a 68%…NO PROBLEM!

The multiple choice Section (2/3 of score): 100 questions 70 min

  1. Be aware that questions start our fairly easy and get more difficult as you go.
  2. The best bet is to go right through all the M/C questions and answer all those you know first. Then go back an answer the ones you don’t! You have about 42 seconds per problem. Don’t waste time on something you have no idea about!
  3. After you read the question, think of the answer before you look at the choices. Sometimes it is clear and the choices are only meant to confuse you! Do however, read all of the answer choices.
  4. Scoring: +1 for a correct answer, 0 if wrong OR don’t answer. DO NOT leave a question blank since there is no penalty for guessing!
  5. Do not expect to know the answers to every question. REMEMBER, everyone is using a different book so some topics may not be completely covered. Just weed out the choices you know are not possible and make an educated guess.
  6. REMEMBER, the majority of multiple choice questions relate to VOCABULARY. Study it!!!

The Free Response section (1/3 of score): 2 FRQ in 50 minutes

  1. Read the essay twice, slowly and carefully! Underline the key elements.
  2. Determine how many points the essay is worth (usually 7-12 points) and picture visually what the rubric is for the grader.
  3. Write a brief outline on your essay booklet. THIS REALLY HELPS!
  4. Address all parts of the question (even if you have to guess) but be concise and technical (rather than creative). You are trying to accumulate points-you won’t be penalized for incorrect information!
  5. Your first sentence should begin to answer the question. Don’t bother with an introduction or a conclusion. Write in clear, concise sentences (NO outlines/bulleted lists). Style gets you no points; clear, correct information does!
  6. I.D.A.: IDENTIFY what is being asked. How many points is this question world?
  7. DEFINE each term AND underline the term. If you define the term incorrectly BUT apply it correctly, you still get the point!!
  8. Definitions can help application.
  9. APPLY term back to question/scenario. If the question involves John making pizzas then in each point the word John, he, or pizza should ALWAYS be there. More information will demonstrate an understanding that you may not have communicated otherwise. Avoid saying “the evolutionary approach is based on evolution”. This doesn’t show you understand the topic.
  10. Follow the format of the question. The easiest way is to use language from the question. Ex: “The cognitive approach would say…”
  11. Keep an eye on the clock (wear a watch if you don’t normally). You have about 25 minutes for each question. Don’t get caught short on essay #2.
  12. Assume the grader is STUPID (explain each term or concept). The purpose of the test is to PROVE that you know something. Make it clear.
  13. Make examples specific. For example, “Sally can only afford a crummy car and so she….” Is specific, whereas, “imagine a girl with a problem and …” is vague.
  14. Write neatly and in PEN. Don’t be afraid to cross something out, if needed.
  15. Upon completion, write a THANK YOU COMMENT at the end of your essay. This little addition can only help your score! Humor and wit are good!

Test Security:

  1. Do not discuss the multiple-choice section with anyone
  2. Do not discuss the free response questions for 48 hours. The general rule of thumb is wait until the questions have been posted on the College Board website
  3. Do NOT post, text, email etc. anything about the exam on the Internet, especially on Facebook, Twitter or other social networks
  4. Do not come and visit me between the multiple choice section and free response section.

What Does the Test Focus On?

  • Unit 1 : 2-4% - History and approaches
  • Unit 2: 8-10% - Research methods
  • Unit 3: 8-10% - Biological bases of behavior
  • Unit 4: 6-8% - Sensation and perception
  • Unit 5: 2-4% - States of consciousness
  • Unit 6: 7-9% - Learning
  • Unit 7: 8-10% - Cognition
  • Unit 8: 6-8% - Motivation and emotion
  • Unit 9: 7-9% - Developmental psychology
  • Unit 10: 5-7% - Personality
  • Unit 11: 5-7% - Testing and individual differences
  • Unit 12: 7-9% - Abnormal behavior
  • Unit 13: 5-7% - Treatment of abnormal behavior
  • Unit 14: 8-10% - Social psychology