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AP® English Language and Composition

The APSI session will focus on crucial aspects of critical reading, analyzing multiple choice exam questions and decoding complex passages, essays, letters and excerpts.  Participants will engage in large and small group activities to share knowledge and expertise. Because college courses and the AP exam emphasize not only analysis but also synthesis, evaluation, and persuasion, our session will offer methods for making the argumentative and research exam components more connected and simplified. Always aware of the importance of saving valuable class time as well as producing skilled readers and writers, we will examine ideas to enhance these goals effectively. 

Course Takeaways

  1. Decoding complex writing passages
  2. Blending research, synthesis and persuasion
  3. Evaluating student essay samples

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Course Schedule

Day 1

Introductions, discussion of Equity and Access, and a beginning look at AP exam questioning—what is crucial and what is not. We will address close reading tips for both the Multiple Choice exam and the Question 2 Essay (Rhetorical Analysis). We will spend time decoding complex passages and examining shortcuts and grading strategies. Please bring a favorite passage you have found, create a prompt similar in format to recent exams on the AP Central website, and make approximately 30 copies to share with us. Sign up Day 1 for presenting this lesson on Day 4.

Day 2

Continuation of analysis. Discussion of writing strategies and active holistic exam scoring. We will review aspects of the Synthesis Question and discuss ways to combine research (MLA) and synthesis together—while also adding in argumentation, “killing three birds with one stone” approach.

Day 3

Best practices for argumentation. We will practice planning and scoring the Persuasive Essay and examining types of blended questions—evaluations of writers’ arguments. Examine Multiple Choice passages and strategies in depth.

Day 4

Continue with Multiple Choice.  Share passages and prompts so the rest of us can practice decoding unfamiliar passages. (I will give you directions) Arrange with me to share other best practices as time permits.

NOTE: Please bring a laptop, IPad, or smart phone with you to help with research. Also, bring a new flash drive for materials. 

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About the Instructor

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Conni Shelnut

Conni Shelnut taught both AP English Literature and AP English Language at Lakeland Senior High, in Lakeland, Florida, for 32 years. In 2002, she was named Florida English Teacher of the Year and a University of Florida Distinguished Educator. Currently retired and working with home-schooled students, Conni is a National Board Certified Teacher and has a master’s degree from the University of Florida. Serving as a past Table Leader for the AP English Literature exam, she is an endorsed College Board consultant for AP English Language. Recently, she represented AP English consultants on the AP Consultant Advisory Panel, a selected team that helps the College Board enhance its workshops and institutes. Conni has co-authored a pre-AP English workshop on passage analysis and has trained consultants nationally. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her three grown children and eight grandchildren, traveling, and reading for pleasure. 

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Additional Information

Please bring a laptop or electronic notebook, as well as a smart phone.  Also, please find one or two samples of essays, speeches, letters, or excerpts you have used with your students for close reading and/or writing practice. We will share best practices on the last day, and amassing high-interest writing and learning to make cuts for excerpts provides valuable learning activities.

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Refund Policy

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