How To Approach AP® Environmental Science
As you study for your AP® Environmental Science (APES) exam, it is important to be fully prepared for the types of questions you will encounter. The exam consists of multiple-choice and free-response questions across two sections. In this article, we will discuss an overview of each type of AP Environmental Science multiple-choice-question (MCQ) and how to approach them. Using the tips and skills discussed in this guide, you will be equipped to do well on the AP Environmental Science MCQ portion of the exam.
Format of the AP Environmental Science MCQ section
The first section of the AP Environmental Science exam lasts 90 minutes, and consists of 80 multiple-choice questions. These questions may appear standalone or in sets. Section I is worth 60% of your final exam score. This is a large percentage, but if you know how to approach the different kinds of MCQs the exam will throw at you, you’ll be able to pass this section with flying colors.
The following is a list of all the AP Environmental Science MCQ types you will encounter on Section I of the AP Environmental Science exam:
Often, the type of question on the AP Environmental Science exam corresponds to a particular science practice as outlined in the AP Environmental Science course and description (CED). For example, article-based questions usually require you to apply science practice 3; however, this is not always true since some article-based questions can require you to use science practice 4 or 7.
How to Approach AP Environmental Science Multiple-Choice Questions
Each question type you encounter will be unique and should be approached differently to get the right answer. We have listed the different types of questions you might see on the AP Environmental Science exam and provided tips to help you confidently tackle and select the correct answer.
AP Environmental Science Multiple-Choice Examples
For this type of MCQ, the answer choices will describe or explain concepts or processes that are written in the question. These simple-form text questions generally test your knowledge-based skills. However, you should not assume that simple-form questions are easy; you could be tested on a fairly difficult concept with a question from this category.
Below is a UWorld example of this question type:
MCQ Example 1
Which of the following is the most likely biotic route for atmospheric nitrogen to enter the food web?
- A)cyanobacteria → stream → soil → groundwater → human
- B)bacteria → roots → leaves → rabbit
- C)lightning → precipitation → soil → plant → deer
- D)fertilizers → soil → roots → bacteria
Tips for Answering Simple-Form Text-Based Questions:
How can I Practice AP Environmental Science Multiple-Choice Questions?
The UWorld question bank has hundreds of these APES questions, so going through our question bank and carefully reading the answer explanations is the best way to practice for the AP Environmental Science exam’s MCQ section. Our AP Environmental Science practice tests can help you prepare for this section with customized practice tests tailored to suit your needs and boost your chances of getting a high score.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Because of the recent redesign of the course, there are not too many places that have up-to-date examples of AP Environmental Science MCQs. However, the College Board® has released 15 questions on the recent AP Environmental Science course and exam description (CED).