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AP® U.S. History (New Teachers)

July 9-12, 2018

Bryant Conference Center

Tuscaloosa, AL

Instructor: Rhonda Rush

Registration Information

Course Description

This is a course designed to introduce teachers to Advanced Placement United States History. Participants will examine expectations for the course, practice scoring components of the exam and develop materials for teaching the skills and content required in the course.

Special Instructions

All participants will need to have a device that is updated and that provides easy internet access. Participants will use the device daily as the instructor will share materials, using Google drive, with each participant. Participants will need to type as they develop materials so it is recommended that the device have a keyboard. Each participant should already have created a GMail account and be comfortable using the device they bring to the institute.

Instructor Bio

Rhonda Rush is an experienced Advanced Placement Social Studies teacher having taught Advanced Placement social studies courses in various school settings since 1986. She currently teachers at Homewood High School in Homewood, Alabama. Rhonda currently serves on the state development team for A+College Ready as a consultant for Advanced Placement United States History. She has conducted numerous training sessions for teachers and has developed a wide variety of curriculum resources.



Introduction to A+ College Ready

  • What implications does this hold for an APUSH teacher?
  • Introduction to the Advanced Placement United States History course
    • Explore Course home page.
    • Examine Framework.  Focus on historical thinking skills.


Technology session

  • *Task: set up Google drive
    • (Framework is linked on Google drive and on course home page.)
    • Set up folders.  Begin to organize your units.

  • Value of a Learning Management System
  • Pacing
    • *Task:  Plan calendar
    • Do you need to reorganize your units on Google Drive?
      • Add subfolders as needed to your drive.


  • What do I need to teach in each unit?
    • *Task:  Decide what you would like to do in each unit. Continue organizing your units.
      • Begin to explore content folders. Copy items and add to your Google drive.


  • Develop a course on a learning management system of your choice.


Scoring the FRQ

  • Study rubric.  (Scoring v. Grading)
  • Score sample FRQs.  Standardize scoring.
    • *Task:  Develop 3 FRQs for each time period.  Practice writing collaboratively.  
      • See folder of 2003-2014 DBQs and FRQs.


Teaching the FRQ

  • Presentation - “How to Write a Good Thesis”
  • Practice - using 2016 FRQs
  • Activity - Gather FRQs for each unit



Document Analysis

  • Complete sample document analysis.
    • *Task:  Create your own activity (like task you just did) for the various time periods.
  • Study the DBQ rubric.
  • Teaching the DBQ.
  • Write a DBQ.


Standardize scoring of the DBQ

  • *Task:  Convert DBQs from old format to new format.  


Multiple Choice / Short Answer

  • Take Multiple choice test.
  • Examine types of questions.  Write multiple choice questions.
  • Short Answer portion of test. 
    • Score answers.  
    • Study rubric.  
    • Examine expectations.
  • Develop short answer questions using previous tests.


Logistics of setting up/ running course

  • Grading
  • What should each unit look like?
  • What should assessments look like?
  • Examine resources available.


  • Examine tiered review. 
  • Examine Gilder-Lehrman materials.
  • Examine crash course videos.
  • Examine Adam Norris videos.