Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.

How hard is AP English Language?

ParentOfIvyHopeParentOfIvyHope - Posts: 3,182 Senior Member
edited July 2012 in AP Tests Preparation
Have you taken it without an AP course at school? How did you do? How hard was it?
Post edited by ParentOfIvyHope on

Replies to: How hard is AP English Language?

  • lindsayx3lindsayx3 Registered User Posts: 200 Junior Member
    My friend took the test without the class and said it was super easy. Yet, others take the class and say how hard it is. I've read somewhere that only some 40-something% actually get a 4 or 5 on the test so I'm not sure. I'd just get a study book; I wouldn't imagine it being that hard if you are naturally good at English.
  • virtuoso_735virtuoso_735 Registered User Posts: 1,876 Senior Member
    Actually, only ~20% get 4's or 5's according to collegeboard (2006 test).
  • aa6590aa6590 Registered User Posts: 783 Member
    yea u have to be innately good at english. also, it has been known to be the most difficultly graded AP test (5% 5's in one year). however, i self-studied AP english and got a 5. by self studied, really just looked over what they expect for format in the essays at borders the night b4. the exam is not very difficult if u can effectively formulate an argument
  • sous_lepontmirabeausous_lepontmirabeau Registered User Posts: 292 Junior Member
    I totally bombed one of the essays and I got a 5...

    I think the hardest part for most people is actually the multiple choice...the essays are seriously not that bad. The questions are really ambiguous! So, you really should buy a study book (or two!) and practice as many multiple choice questions as you can.
  • ParentOfIvyHopeParentOfIvyHope - Posts: 3,182 Senior Member
    My D took an AP Euro Hist in Sophomore year and got 5. She is planning to take AP USH and English Hons. (III) but wants to take AP English Language exams. Is it doable? She will be having other APs too.
  • amazonamazon Registered User Posts: 926 Member
    My daughter took it last year with the class and got a 3 and then took it again this year without the class and got a 5. We're flabbergasted because we don't think she's usually very good at this kind of thing. Was this years test particularly easy? I think she does well on short answers but not that well usually on essays. Maybe prepping for the SATs helped with the short answers.
  • inconnuinconnu Registered User Posts: 578 Member
    -I thought the class was insanely hard (A/B...and I worked pretty darn hard)
    -By the test came around, I hadn't a care in the world about the test. I did 0 practice tests...Never even bought a test prep book.
    -I got lucky and got a 5, haha.

    I'm not good at English Language at all...I'm not atrocious and I don't sound like an illiterate, but I just don't have a natural affinity for English. My teacher, however, allowed us to have a lot of practice. We did AP prompts from as far back as 1992 (some were older) to 2006, and examined each very carefully. I finally got the hang of what we needed to write for AP English Language, and deciphering the prompt became much easier this last January. It just clicked. Like anything else, I think practice is all you need to do well. I still think the class itself was demanding...and cost many many hours of sleep.
  • samuelcsamuelc Registered User Posts: 204 Junior Member
    I took the test with a class (got a 5) but we did very little in-class test preparation (our teacher had an extended emergency until the week before the test, and the replacement thought there's no difference between 'AP English Literature' and 'Language'). My overall impression of this year's test (MC and essay) is that it's easier than the sample test given in the official course outline. Do as many MC and FRQ practices as you possibly can - don't rely on test prep books alone, because they're only supplementary in terms of value.
  • AnimusAnimus Registered User Posts: 82 Junior Member
    Reading a lot + innate ability + skill at doing timed, prompted essays = easy 5
  • J11TJ11T - Posts: 70 Junior Member
    its not that hard, if your a decent writer .If you get below a 3 there is seriously something wrong
  • chickenboi8008chickenboi8008 Registered User Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    ^^ aww dont be mean like that
    its actually not that bad
    im an ok writer and i passed it
    u get used to writing 3 essays in that short amount of time
    u should definitely look into taking that class
  • zivalichazivalicha Registered User Posts: 95 Junior Member
    I would say that taking the class would be helpful if you're not an English-based person. Math/science people may not have a strong enough foundation of English skills (I know they can, I'm just saying) and may need the class to help them focus on the specific test curriculum. Students, like one of my friends, who are strong in English can probably take the test and do fine. As long as the student is familiarized with non-fiction/prose writing, is fairly polished in writing skills, and is well-aware of rhetorical terms and rhetorical analysis, a 4 or 5 is likely. I took the class and got a 4; the friend I mentioned didn't and got a 4. It's possible either way.
  • chicklachickla Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member

    Only about 5% of test takers this year got a 5.
  • otay57otay57 Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
    Overall, I would say the exam is very doable, since I passed it with a 3 with the following factors:

    1) I'm not an "english" person and I've always hated english classes, especially AP Lang.
    2) My third essay was only an intro and one body paragraph because I ran out of time.
    3) I didn't even get to the fourth reading passage on the multiple choice because I ran out of time.

    So if I passed it considering all of the above factors, then trust me,anyone can pass it.
  • ambryllienambryllien Registered User Posts: 374 Member
    This year's test was DEFINITELY easier than last year's, and DEFINITELY a higher percentage got 5's.

    The hardest part were the MC, but if your daughter is good at SAT-type questions and can memorize a brief list of literary terms, she'll be fine. I took APE.Lang. and 4 other APs (one of which was a language, and my school's language program is CRAP... it was basically self-studying French, so double the work) and got 5's on all and a 4 on French. I wasn't really stressed about the others. Seriously, AP exams are not really anything to flip out about. You only need like a 70% and there's your 5. Not THAT much work involved. Your daughter will be fine.
This discussion has been closed.