Top 10 Topics That Won’t Appear on the 2019 APUSH Test

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It’s APUSH review season! My students Number 1 question is, “What topic do you think will be on this year’s DBQ?” The truthful answer is, “I don’t know.” Based upon past predictions my record of predicting what will NOT be a DBQ topic is better than my record of predicting what will be on the DBQ.

This year marks the fifth anniversary of the redesigned APUSH exam. Here are the 10 topics College Board test writers have used since the debut of the new exam:

I. Units 1 – 3, 1491 – 1800

  1. Causes of the development of slavery, 1607 – 1750
  2. Changes and continuities in ideas about independence, 1763 – 1783

II. Units 4 – 6, 1800 – 1898

  1. Changes and continuities in American foreign policy, 1783 – 1828
  2. Impact of the Second Great Awakening on reform movements, 1800 – 1850
  3. Changes and continuities in the lives of African Americans in the South, 1865 – 1905
  4. Causes of America’s expanding role in world affairs, 1865 – 1910

III. Units 7 – 9, 1898 – Present

  1. How ideas about overseas expansion shaped national identity, 1898 – 1904
  2. Changes and continuities in the lives of African Americans who migrated to the North, 1910 – 1930
  3. Causes of the rise of a woman’s rights movement, 1940 – 1975
  4. Causes of the rise of a new conservatism, 1960 – 1989

College Board test writers take pride in NOT repeating DBQ topics. They also take pride in covering a wide diversity of topics. Based on this list we can safely eliminate foreign policy, the new conservatism, and nineteenth century reform movements. Although DBQs have covered important aspects of African American and women’s history, there are many topics in these two crucial areas that test writers could still choose.