Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the United States of America. Also, it is the most commonly studied foreign language in high-schools, colleges, and grad schools.
It is so popular as a second language that it’s the only language with two programs: AP Spanish Literature and Culture and AP Spanish Language and Culture.
Each year, a good number of students attempt the AP Spanish exam. For example, in 2019, the number of candidates reached an all-time high when approximately 185000 learners took the AP Spanish Language course.
If you're prepping for AP Spanish, it means you have the necessary know-how, and you're on your way to fluency. This will be useful since the AP Spanish exam has a complex structure where you are tested in many fields to know how well you have grasped the language.
The exam will measure your proficiency through how well you can speak, respond, interpret, and present what you hear and read.
The result will consider your fluency, critical reflection, grammatical accuracy, and sentence coherency, among other things. It becomes easier to achieve a high score in the AP Spanish exam when your understanding of the language is near-native.
This makes AP Spanish one of the most demanding AP levels in the US. However, if you feel overwhelmed, be patient. Like any other AP or standardized test, the key to success is prepping in advance and managing your anxiety.
Here are 5 AP Spanish resources and tips that will come in handy for advanced preparation. Read on:
Useful AP Spanish Tips And Resources
Acing AP Spanish Language and Culture course is no easy feat. Last year's exam results are a testament to that – they showed one in five Spanish learners secured a 5 – and the rest scored 4, 3, or even 2.
That is why our Spanish teachers have designed a detailed AP Spanish study guide. It's aimed to be a useful resource for any learner planning to attempt the next AP Spanish test.
With the help of these handy tips, you'll get a deeper understanding of the exam and be prepared for whatever it throws at you.
Without further ado, let's elaborate on these tips and resources:
Make Use Of Your Spanish
Firstly, start practicing what you know. You may think it's a no-brainer; however, you'll be surprised to learn that each year many candidates fail at the most basic questions.
However, this should not be the case because when students reach AP Spanish or any other AP level, they already have adequate knowledge of the language's literature and grammar.
Therefore, you should start practicing Spanish daily as it's the best way to hone your acquired skills.
For this, it would be beneficial to read Spanish news or watch telenovelas (you might find yourself addicted to them and get the urge to speak Spanish around the house).
A neat trick would be to switch to Spanish settings on your social media profiles to be forced to look at it and attempt to understand it.
Additionally, an excellent way to practice Spanish audio skills would be to listen to Spanish music stations such as podcasts and radio shows, etc. And an entertaining way to achieve that would be to watch Spanish football, along with the local commentary!
Bonus tip: for better AP Spanish practice, use different sources from various countries to grasp the trickier accents, such as Andalusian and Argentinian.
If you're learning a foreign language, listening to it being spoken can help you master it quickly.
Now, there are many ways you can include Spanish audio in your day to day business. You can add upbeat, fun songs into your playlists to understand the use of the new words and dialects in an informal setting.
In addition to that, most US cities have Spanish radio stations that you can listen to. Or, you can follow news in Spanish to see how much of it you understand.
Overall, there are many ways to practice your Spanish; however, listening to it being spoken is the most effortless yet entertaining way!
Another effective way to improve AP Spanish language skills is by speaking.
No one can ever fully know what to expect in the test. Therefore, the best thing to do is to learn how to speak it!
There are many instances where you can test your speaking abilities. For example, when a teacher asks a question, don't hesitate to lift your hand! If you say something wrong, constructive criticism will be useful.
You can also communicate with your Spanish-speaking acquaintances or friends.
Don't worry; everybody makes mistakes; however, the good thing is the more you'll speak, the fewer errors you'll make. And this process will help you learn how to speak fluent Spanish quickly.
It's the ideal way to learn because it will weed out many of your flaws and teach you how to carry a conversation. Moreover, this will help you learn things that you wouldn't in a textbook.
Read Whatever You Can In Spanish
Remember, reading for AP Spanish prep doesn't mean you have to read classic Spanish literature such as One Hundred Years of Solitude or Don Quixote.
Similarly, because it's an AP Spanish test and not literature does not mean that you can get away with sub-standard reading abilities.
When it comes to practicing reading for your AP Spanish test, all you require is a contextual understanding of words, which can only be achieved through experience.
The AP Spanish exam will require you to read in certain areas, such as in the multiple-choice section, where fast reading skills will help you garner high scores.
It would help your cause to get a Spanish magazine or newspaper like El Mundo, El País, or El Correo as there are hundreds available on the streets of big US cities.
Furthermore, make a habit of reading at least a couple of news articles per week. While reading, make sure you pick out idioms and words that you aren't accustomed to using.
By doing this, you can improve your reading in no time and making your AP Spanish exam that much easier.
Build Your Spanish Vocabulary
If you are in the AP Spanish Language and Culture course, it is understood that you maintain a thorough knowledge of Spanish. To reach the next level, you have to focus on roadblocks you face when finishing assignments, conversing, or reading in class.
Most likely, it's your limited vocabulary. Or, it can also be a word you once learned and memorized but are unable to recall.
It's a genuine problem faced by AP Spanish students and people studying for other AP levels, GREs, and SATs. Learning a new, unique vocabulary is a difficult task.
However, like everything else, it has a way out:
Count On Flashcards
Nothing is better than vocabulary cards when learning new words. It is by far, one of the best techniques available and will help you learn new words each day.
Do this by making a list of words you are unfamiliar with, and use them to create cards, charts, detailed diagrams, or whatever else that helps you with memorizing.
And remember never to translate it into English!
Instead, write each word's description in Spanish — research has proven that you'll remember vocabulary quicker (and recall them faster on the day of the exam) if you have a depiction in mind.
One Word Per Day Is Enough
If you want to memorize new vocabulary, don't try to remember all of it at once. You should instead learn one word per day, and that will get the job done.
Open your dictionary and select a random word; you don't have to go alphabetically. You can also use a flip calendar, which introduces you to a word each day.
Contextualization Is Key
You can make all the flashcards or colorful diagrams in the world, but they won't be useful if you do not know when or how to use them. Keep in mind that the AP Spanish exam won't test you on the literal definitions of words.
During the exam, you'll have to use them correctly in sentences. Therefore, learning words alone won't get the work done; you have to learn them with contextualization.
To put it simply, when you learn a new word, make sure you incorporate it in a sentence for easy and better understating.
Get Yourself A Spanish Tutor!
The Spanish language is widely popular in America. That's why so many students appear for the AP Spanish exams each year!
However, a lack of preparation leads to most students scoring much lesser than they may have envisioned.
Although it's a tough exam requiring a lot of hard work, you can score well in the AP Spanish test if you prepare using the right tips and resources.
Therefore, follow these useful AP Spanish resources and tips that we have provided, and you'll outperform your expectations in the exam. However, if you feel you could use a hand, then get yourself a Spanish tutor.
Though there are a wide variety of useful AP Spanish study guides, materials, and booklets available that will help you learn and practice AP Spanish, nothing will be more beneficial than a Spanish tutor.
Spanish tutors can provide you with the best and most relevant resource materials. In addition to that, they will also give you handy tips and tricks that will help you remain organized and channel your time wisely.
Superprof has some of the best Spanish tutors in the US that can help you ace your AP Spanish exam smoothly.
With Superprof, you can take online Spanish lessons from the comfort of your couch, saving time, cost, and above all, you will land with a decent grade!