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This article was co-authored by Christopher Taylor, Ph D.
There are 17 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. The AP English Language and Composition essay is part of the final exam to determine if you get your Advanced Placement (AP) English credit, freeing you from 1 or 2 composition classes in college.Instructors of freshman composition expect you to arrive in their classes with some understanding of basic English grammar and usage.However, if your high school English classes focused more on reading literature than on composing essays, your memory of sentence parts may be a bit hazy.Odds are good that you already know how to compose a five-paragraph essay: introduction, three body paragraphs, conclusion.In fact, you probably composed one or two of these short essays as part of the admissions process at your college or university. Building on familiar principles (regarding thesis statements and topic sentences, for example), you will have opportunities to compose longer essays using a variety of organizational methods.To formulate a top-level AP English essay, some preparation is required in addition to your AP English class.Remember that you will be working under a time constraint of 2 hours for 3 essays (the College Board calls them "free response").And it should be one of the most enjoyable and rewarding courses in your college life.Many instructors of freshman English assign two textbooks: a reader (that is, a collection of essays or literary works) and a writing handbook.Then, when it comes time to discuss the work in class, speak up and share your thoughts.After all, sharing ideas is what college is all about.