AP English Language & Composition

  • The AP English Language and Composition course focuses on the development and revision of evidence-based analytic and argumentative writing and the rhetorical analysis of nonfiction texts. The AP English Literature and Composition course focuses on reading, analyzing, and writing about imaginative literature (fiction, poetry, drama) from various periods. There is no prescribed sequence of study, and a school may offer one or both courses. AP English Language and Composition

    The AP English Language and Composition course aligns to an introductory college-level rhetoric and writing curriculum, which requires students to develop evidence-based analytic and argumentative essays that proceed through several stages or drafts. Students evaluate, synthesize, and cite research to support their arguments. Throughout the course, students develop a personal style by making appropriate grammatical choices. Additionally, students read and analyze the rhetorical elements and their effects in non-fiction texts, including graphic images as forms of text, from many disciplines and historical periods.

    There are no prerequisite courses for AP English Language and Composition. Students should be able to read and comprehend college-level texts and apply the conventions of Standard Written English in their writing.

    The AP English Language and Composition course is designed to help students become skilled readers and writers through engagement with the following course requirements:

    • Composing in several forms (e.g., narrative, expository, analytical, and argumentative essays) about a variety of subjects
    • Writing that proceeds through several stages or drafts, with revision aided by teacher and peers • Writing informally (e.g., imitation exercises, journal keeping, collaborative writing), which helps students become aware of themselves as writers and the techniques employed by other writers
    • Writing expository, analytical, and argumentative compositions based on readings representing a variety of prose styles and genres
    • Reading nonfiction (e.g., essays, journalism, science writing, autobiographies, criticism) selected to give students opportunities to identify and explain an author’s use of rhetorical strategies and techniques
    • Analyzing graphics and visual images both in relation to written texts and as alternative forms of text themselves
    • Developing research skills and the ability to evaluate, use, and cite primary and secondary sources
    • Conducting research and writing argument papers in which students present an argument of their own that includes the analysis and synthesis of ideas from an array of sources
    • Citing sources using a recognized editorial style (e.g., Modern Language Association, The Chicago Manual of Style)
    • Revising their work to develop
          o A wide-ranging vocabulary used appropriately and effectively;
          o A variety of sentence structures, including appropriate use of subordination and coordination;
          o Logical organization, enhanced by techniques such as repetition, transitions, and emphasis;
          o A balance of generalization and specific, illustrative detail;
          o An effective use of rhetoric, including tone, voice, diction, and sentence structure.