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AP European History

This course can help prepare students who wish to continue their social studies education after high school, as well as students who wish to perform exceptionally well on the SAT exam. The level of aptitude in this subject will assist students wishing to excel on the SAT and in college courses.

While there is no prerequisite for AP European History, students should make sure that they are prepared for the course load associated with an Advanced Placement History course.  Most social studies classes include extensive readings of both textbooks and case studies.  Students should be prepared to both read and analyze what they read in order to apply it to the class.  They should also be somewhat familiar with general world history and geography before enrolling in an Advance Placement European History course.

According to the College Board’s website, AP European History focuses primarily on the study of European history after 1450. It introduces students to cultural, economic, political, and social developments that played a part in shaping the world in which they lived, and the powerful continent that Europe has become since then. It will also require students to approach the topic of European History with an analytical mind, and teach them how to observe historical events and interpret them.


This course focuses on the modern history of the Western world. By taking this class, students will improve their writing, reading, and analytical skills. This class will cover information on the basic chronology from the Late Middle Ages to the very recent past. The areas of concentration include historical, political, and economic history coupled with an intense study of cultural and intellectual institutions and their development.

The Course is divided into several topics. These topics include:
  • Intellectual and Cultural History. Students will learn about changes in religious thoughts and institutions in Europe as well as the secularization of the European continent as a result of these changes. Students will also gain a firmer understanding of developments in political, social, and ideological concepts, and how their evolution as affected Europe.
  • Political and Diplomatic History. Students will be taught about the rise and functioning of the modern state in its various forms, as well as the relations between Europe and the other parts of the world through colonialism, imperialism, decolonization, and global interdependence.
  • Social and Economic History: Students will study the character of and changes in agricultural production and organization. They will learn about the influence of commercial practices on society such as food supply, diet, and famine.

Students will also come to learn the importance of geography in the study of European history, and its effect on European politics and conflicts over the course of individual country relationships. They will come to understand how geography now affects European politics and how it can be used to promote peaceful interactions in the future.

Additionally, students will learn how to use study notes, study guides, and other various study techniques in conjunction with AP World History books such as A History of Western Society, and Western Civilization.

Students interested in enrolling in AP courses should recognize that these courses require a slightly larger commitment than other high school classes. Students that commit to their classes and excel in them will see a huge payoff in their preparedness for college entry exams as well as their college education.

Students that wish to get accepted to their top college or university should seriously consider taking an Advanced Placement course (or several). They will not only strengthen a student’s high school transcript and GPA, they will also provide students with actual college credit before they even graduate high school. Most importantly, they will help students develop the study skills and discipline they need to exceed both in school and out. Anyone interested in taking Advanced Placement courses should talk to their guidance counselor for more information. The sooner students begin taking their education seriously, the sooner they’ll begin to see the results of all their hard work!

Here you will find all of our AP European History resources to help you prepare for the AP European History exam. We have European History outlines and review topics right now and we're working on adding European History practice essays, practice quizzes, vocabulary terms and free response questions in the near future.

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