Sunday, January 4, 2009
East Ballroom Foyer (Hilton New York)
Teaching students how to think historically is one of the most important goals of any introductory college-level history course. Even so, it is often either neglected due to the increasing proliferation of content or simply not made an explicit pedagogical aim in the first place. Recognizing these challenges, the Advanced Placement ProgramŽ is currently in the process of revising its three AP History Courses and Examinations in order to focus more directly on instruction and learning in the area of historical thinking. The revised AP History Courses and Exams to be implemented worldwide in the 2011-12 academic year will include instruction and assessment in the following skills: use of historical evidence in crafting historical arguments and narratives; historical interpretation; historical comparison and contextualization; and historical causation. This poster session provides examples of how these skills can be infused into both curriculum and assessment in college-level history courses, as well as illustrating how instruction can be structured around the development of these skills for diverse learners. Additionally, the session demonstrates how these skills are translated into discrete descriptions of student performance in AP history at varying ability levels. These descriptions of student achievement are intended to provide guidance to both AP teachers and college history faculty to understand better what different AP exam scores mean in terms of student ability to think historically. The poster will be co-presented by an AP World History teacher, an college professor of history, and the AP Program's Director of History Curriculum and Content Development.