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AP United States History

Workshop Description

The redesigned course and exam for AP United States History launches in the fall of 2014.  The summer institute will focus on the three parts of the new curriculum framework:  historical thinking skills, the concept outline, and the thematic learning objectives.  Through the exchange of ideas in discussion and in the study of materials prepared by the College Board for teachers of the redesigned course, participants will consider ways to incorporate the three parts into their AP U.S. History curriculum.  Teachers will learn the vocabulary of the curriculum framework—key concepts, historical thinking skills, chronological reasoning, contextualization, etc.  They will be introduced to the new multiple choice questions, the short essays, the long essays, and the DBQ and will work together to develop ways to prepare their students to respond to them by creating examples of each type of question for their classes.  The main question to be considered is “How do I teach AP U.S. History to meet the requirements of the redesign?”  The goals are to make teachers aware of the changes in the AP course and exam, to help them become comfortable with the new format, and to work together to develop strategies for preparing their students for success in AP United States History. 

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the new AP U.S. History curriculum framework
  • Understand the new types of questions on the AP exam
  • Experience in writing the new style multiple choice and short answer questions
  • Developing methods for teaching historical thinking skills
  • Completing the course audit
  • Pacing using the new curriculum framework

Consultant Bio

Bill Shelton has taught AP United States History for 35 years, the last 30 at Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth.  He is a reader, table leader, and exam leader for the AP exam and served from 2004-2013 as one of three high school teachers on the AP U.S. History Test Development Committee that designed the AP exams.  He has a B.A. in History from TCU and an M.A. and Ph.D. in History from the University of Kentucky.  He has served as an AP consultant for the Southwest Region of the College Board since 1991. Bill received awards from the Southwest Region of the College Board, the Mary Isham Keith chapter of the D.A.R., and the Daughters of the War of 1812 as an outstanding History teacher, and in the fall of 2013 he was featured in Fort Worth, Texas magazine as an “A+ Educator” in Tarrant County.



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