How to Get the Score You Want on the AP Microeconomics Exam

November 13, 2020
By AdmissionSight

How to Get the Score You Want on the AP Microeconomics Exam

For high school students who are committed to excellence and looking to earn a spot at one of the nation’s most prestigious universities, a great way to get a head start on that journey is to enroll in AP courses and take AP exams such as the AP Microeconomics Exam.

When it comes to taking AP courses such as the AP Macroeconomics Exam, there are a lot of aspects of the exam itself that can help high school students prepare for succeeding at getting the score that they desire. Hear at AdmissionSight, we make it our number one priority to help high schoolers achieve their most advantageous goals. Chances are good those goals will be helped by enrolling in quite a few AP courses.

But before we go over how to score a perfect 5 out of 5 on the AP Microeconomics Exam, Let’s go over why taking AP courses and exams is such a good idea for high school students.

Help you prepare for college

One of the most important reasons why high school students should think about taking AP courses is because they can help those students prepare for what is to come in college.  In fact, the College Board has created the curriculum of AP courses in order to replicate introductory college classes.

AP courses are fast-paced, cover lots of material, and tend to require quite a bit more out of classwork such as research and critical thinking the normal high school classes do. For students who are looking to Excel not only in high school but also in college, AP courses are a great way to know what to expect.

Students get to study what they love

One great reason why students should consider taking AP courses is that they give students the opportunity to dive deeply into subjects that they are passionate about and love. When it comes to the AP Microeconomics Exam, students who are excited by mathematics or interested in possibly pursuing a career in business will be ecstatic about the information they are given and the problems that they are expected to solve in this class. Whether you are interested in STEM subjects, English and literature, history, or learning new languages, there is an AP course that will allow you to push yourself in the classroom.

Earn some college credits

Another reason quite a lot of students want to take AP courses in high school is that they actually offer students the opportunity to earn college credit and placement. Every AP exam his graded on a five-point scale. A 5 out of 5 is the best score a student can earn, while 1 out of 5 is the worst. In many cases, students who are able to earn at least a 3 out 5 are able to earn some form college credit or placement. In fact, in some cases, high school students are able to test out of introductory college courses altogether.

Look great in the eyes of college admissions officers

One of the best reasons to consider taking an AP course is that college admissions officers will absolutely take notice of the difficulty of the classes that a student takes in high school. Enrolling in AP courses shows these university admission officers that a high school student is ready for the hard work that they will face once they arrive at college. Not only that, but voluntarily enrolling in AP courses proves to those that look at your transcript that you are willing to go the extra mile and work even harder in order to achieve your goals and gain the education that you want for yourself.

Improve your transcript

everybody knows that a strong GPA is an important aspect of getting into the College of University of your dreams. When it comes to taking AP classes, you may enjoy the benefits of extra weight being attributed to the grade that you receive in the course. That means that a B grade could actually show up as an A on your transcript. Or an A- could show up as an A+. Now, how’s that for making the most out of your curriculum?

About the AP Microeconomics Course

The AP Microeconomics Course Is it a college-level course that sets out to introduce students to the basic principles of economics that specifically apply to the functions of individual economic decisions and decision-makers. The course also sets out to develop a student’s familiarity with the operation of product and factor markets, distributions of income, the role of government in promoting greater efficiency and equity in an economy, and market failure. On top of learning important facts and information, students will also learn how to use information that comes in graphs, charts, and data in order to analyze, describe, and explain greater economic concepts.

well, there are no official prerequisites for this course and exam, students are encouraged to enrol in the course as long as they possess basic math skills and graphing skills.

Just like is the case with all other AP courses, the AP Microeconomics. course set out to help teach students a clear list of skills that will help them succeed in this course and beyond. those core skills are listed below:

Lit of AP Economics skills

Along with the course skills, the AP Microeconomics course also comes with its own list of big ideas. Big ideas are a part of every AP course and serve as the foundation of the course which allows the students enrolled to create meaningful connections from concept to concept. Often, these big ideas are abstract concepts or themes that become threads within the course and help link one idea or unit to the next.

Students who are able to utilize these big ideas and apply them in a variety of contexts will lead to a greater understanding of the material as well as a greater chance of success in the exam. the big ideas for this AP course are below:

Big ideas in the AP Economics course

The final thing to know about the way that this course works is that it is broken up in six individual units. These units are weighted differently on the AP Microeconomics Exam, with the range of percentage in weight show below:

Units of Economics course

About the AP Microeconomics Exam

When it comes to the AP Microeconomics Exam, it actually has one of the highest success rates amongst students who take it. That is, of course, if your idea of success if scoring a perfect 5 out 5.

Last year, just under 25 per cent of students who took the AP Microeconomics Exam earned the score of 5. Here is a breakdown of the rest of the scores,


Percentage of topics in the exam

When it comes to the format of the exam, it is not only one of the easiest from a statistical standpoint, with well over 50 percent of those who take it scoring either a 4 or a 5, it is also one of the shortest. The entire exam consists of two sections and takes just two hours and 10 minutes to complete.

Multiple choice

The first section of the exam is a multiple-choice section that takes the first hour and 10 minutes of the total allotted time and is made up of 60 total questions. In all, the multiple-choice section of the exam is worth 66 percent of the total score of the exam.

A few samples of types of multiple-choice questions that students can expect on the exam include the following:

sample economics exam question

sample economics exam question

Free Response

The second and final section of the AP Microeconomics Exam is the free response section. Students will have the remaining hour to answer three free-response questions that make up the final 33 percent of the exam’s final great.

When it comes to the questions specifically, one of the free-response questions account for 50 percent of the total score of this section, while the other two account for 25 percent each.

A number of sample questions that are similar to the ones that you might face on the AP Microeconomics Exam are below:

Sample free response question

Sample free response question

As you now know, your chances of success when it comes to this exam from a statistical standpoint are actually in your favour! With that being said, just because over half of people who took the exam scored a 4 or 5 last year, does not mean that you are automatically going to be a part of that group when you take the exam yourself.

Here at AdmissionSight, we believe that preparation is the best way to lead to success. For that reason, we have broken down the several steps that you should take in order to ensure the greatest level of success once the day of the exam finally comes.

Assess your knowledge and ability

The first step that you will want to take when it comes to preparing for the AP Microeconomics Exam is to take a full practice exam. This is not only an ability to dip your toes into the format of the exam, but it is also a great way for you to assess your knowledge. While you do not have to time yourself in the way that you will be timed on the actual exam day (feel free to do so if you want), you will have to cross-reference the answers that you come up with to the answers that are offered in the resource that you are utilizing.

Some of the best resources to use at this step is to use an actual exam from a past year. A few of the exams that you could take are here and here.

The reason why you want to cross-check your answers with the answers that are offered in the key is for two reasons. First off, it can serve as a fantastic learning opportunity for you to see what you may have gotten wrong. More importantly, it is an opportunity for you to identify any trends in terms of which types of questions you were repeatedly getting wrong.

Master the theory

When it comes to the AP Microeconomics Exam, mastering the basic economic principles that you will be taught in the class along with specific microeconomic vocabulary and theory is paramount to scoring that perfect 5 out of 5.  Overall this includes the following subjects:

  • Basic economic theory
  • Nature and functions of product markets
  • Factor markets
  • Market failure and the government’s role

Along with the course itself. There are a number of fantastic online and in-print resources that you can take advantage of as you seek to fully understand these fascinating concepts. Other great options for students who are looking to master these theories is to work with the teacher who taught the course out of class or seek to create a study group made of up their fellow classmates and friends so that they can quiz one another, discuss the topics, and grade each other’s question sets and practice exams, which takes us to the next step of preparing for the exam.

Practice multiple choice and free response questions

Once you feel as though you have mastered these concepts, it is time to turn your attention to mastering the many different forms in which you will be tested. This means putting am emphasis on practising as many sets of questions as possible – both multiple-choice questions and free-response questions – to try to ensure that no matter what you see on the day of the actual exam, you will have a certain about of confidence that you know what the question is asking.

Much like the ACT or SAT exams, AP exams are as much about mastering the subject matter as it is about mastering the exam itself. That brings us to the final step of preparation.

Take full and timed practice exams

The final thing that you will want to focus your attention to as the day of the exam approaches is the exam itself, or at least practice exams. Either taking full practice exams that are offered in study guides or using exams from past years, you will want to take as many of these as possible. On top of that, you will want to make sure that you are giving yourself the amount of time that you will have on the day of the actual exam. That way, you can be sure that you won’t be surprised by the speed in which the AP Microeconomics Exam will start and finish.

Good luck!


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