Answers to Common questions about the

GCS APUSH class 


What are the most important skills needed for success in APUSH?
Writing, reading, and memory skills are essential for passing the APUSH test and succeeding in the class.

Why is the APUSH exam given so much emphasis?

Exam preparation is the major outcome of the class. Unlike, other classes, APUSH has a "big game" that follows a year of intense "practice". Preparation for the test is a common goal that serves as a motivator and bond for our class. It is important that everyone who is the class is committed to taking the test.

What if I am nervous about the class being too demanding?

It is perfectly normal to be anxious about the APUSH demands. Like any important commitment, you should take the decision to be in APUSH seriously. In most cases, individuals who are not a little anxious, are probably naive about the future workload. On the other hand, many students underestimate their own potential. Mr. Cap's APUSH webpages are intended to help ease your concerns. You can be assured that Mr. Cap will serve as an encouraging, supportive cheer leader along the way. You are not alone.


Why is it necessary to read during the school breaks (Summer, Christmas, spring)?
In a nutshell, "you can pay me now, or you can pay me later". The intense APUSH content load must be covered by May. Past students have voiced tremendous appreciation for a "front loaded" approach that allows for a consistent pace from July to May. This approach allows for quality review time in the final month before the test. Classes that don't  take this approach tend to have less time for review and struggle in their coverage of the 20th Century.

Why do A.P. students talk so much about the D.B.Q. (Document Based Question)? 

The D.B.Q. is a unique writing component of the A.P. system that requires students to use primary source documents to defend their written position arguments. Most students have not had previous experience with this kind of approach and find the D.B.Q. a bit mysterious at first. For many A.P. students, the D.B.Q. becomes their favorite element of the A.P. process.   

Should GCS Juniors or Seniors take the class? 

GCS Juniors make a better AP History fit.

The GCS AP History class is sequenced so that Juniors can make a smooth transition from 10th Grade Pre-AP History into APUSH.  Plus Juniors are not taking the other two AP classes offered to Seniors @ GCS.


Seniors who are also taking Physics, AP Calculus, and AP Composition might find the work load difficult when adding AP History.  It's recommended that Seniors focus on the AP Calculus and Composition classes to give them a "headstart" in their freshman level college course work.