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The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The best ways to study for AP exams

Marquette Messenger
A collection of Barrons AP test prep books used by many students

Amid AP exam season, I have been trying to find the best way to prepare for my tests. The test material has components that students have been learning since the beginning of the school year, covering subjects that were learned throughout the last eight months.

Through testing different study methods, websites, and resources, I have found the perfect collection of ways to help anyone prepare for their AP exams. 

Barron’s AP Resources

Barron’s AP is a collection of books, test prep, and flashcard sets that help prepare you for almost all AP exams. 

For my AP World History exam, I purchased a set of flashcards from Amazon. The set includes over 400 detailed flashcards, covering every term, event, and person that I’ll need to know. Additionally, in the back of the box, there is a collection of cards that have examples of different study games to do either by yourself or with a group. I found these flashcards super helpful, especially when I wanted to use them with multiple people.

The books they have are something I would recommend purchasing at the beginning of the school year. It is essentially a large review guide over the whole course, and if used throughout the year, it can help deepen the knowledge learned in class. Also, these books include multiple full-length practice tests and questions to help you prepare for the exam. They also have prep books for the SAT and ACT. 


Knowt is a resource I discovered last year, not for APs, but once I explored the site more, I found that they had a great way to help study for them. On Knowt, you can make a free account with your school or personal email and have access to everything. 

There is a tab that you can click on that allows you to select any AP on there. Once selected, there is an abundance of flashcards, practice tests, and other ways to review. I found this resource most helpful for making practice tests for each unit. Along with the premade tests, Knowt allows you to make your own. Any set of terms entered can also be turned into a practice test. This is a great resource to use to review specific terms and take term tests.

It has been so helpful to be able to go back and review certain time periods and events all in one place that is easy to access. 

Class Companion

This is not a resource available for every AP exam or class, but it has been incredibly helpful in preparing me for exams like AP World. Class Companion uses an AI grading system based on the rubric your teachers put in. I found it specifically helpful to practice Document Based Questions and Long Essay Questions. However, it does require a teacher to assign them, so this is a resource not accessible to everyone. But, if your teachers use it, utilize it. 

Library Study Sessions

Going to the library has truly been one of the best ways I have been able to study. There is something about a change of scenery that allows me to focus better. Some study rooms will have wall-sized whiteboards, and that is one way to make amazing use of that room. 

I have benefited immensely from writing everything on the whiteboards; something about writing on them is just fun to me. I’ve gone in there for a few hours and have ended up filling the whiteboards numerous times. Additionally, the floor-to-ceiling windows in many of the rooms allow for a brighter feeling in the room, and that helps me concentrate and feel more motivated. 

Organize Your Notes

Throughout the school year, I have taken countless pages of notes. Now that it is time for an exam on them, it is imperative to have them organized. I have gone through my AP World notebook, which has over 120 pages of content in it and organized all the important information into a document. 

Sorting the information and organizing it on another platform, like Google Docs, is a great way to review it all in one place. It has been so helpful to be able to go back and review certain time periods and events all in one place that is easy to access. 

Start Early

I highly recommend starting early. For me, starting my studying anywhere from two weeks to a week in advance has produced the best results. I am also a person who can cram the night before and end up doing well—it all depends on what works for you. 

With some, all, or a combination of these tips, you should be able to be adequately prepared for any AP exam in the future. They’ve worked for me, and I hope they do for you as well. 

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About the Contributor
Autumn VanSolkema
Autumn VanSolkema, Staff Writer
Autumn is a junior entering her first year on The Central Trend. She loves a good romance novel, but loves her corgi more. If she is not belting out Taylor Swift songs, she is teaching herself new songs on the guitar or ukulele. You can find her cheering on the sidelines of football games or coaching her little fourth-grade cheer team. Autumn has grown up loving the theatre, being both on the stage and in the audience. She has performed in many shows and regularly begs her parents to take her to New York again to see more Broadway productions. Autumn is an avid photographer, with her camera roll being filled with 19k+ photos over the last two years. Her least favorite things in the world: Balloons and Styrofoam. Her favorite musicalsWaitress and Mamma Mia Number of surgeries she's had: 7 Her favorite condiments: Mayo and Ranch Favorite season: Just like her name, it's autumn

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