The AP English Literature and Composition course will engage you in the careful reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature. Through the close reading of selected texts, you can deepen your understanding of the ways writers use language to create meaning. You’ll learn to consider a work's structure, style, and themes, as well as smaller-scale elements such as the use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone.


The AP English Literature and Composition course is intended to give you the experience of a typical introductory college literature course. It includes intensive study of representative works from various genres, periods, and cultures, concentrating on works of recognized literary merit. Reading in the course builds on the reading done in your previous English courses. You’ll learn to read deliberately and thoroughly, taking time to understand a work's complexity, to absorb its richness of meaning, and to analyze how that meaning is embodied in literary form. You’ll also learn to consider the social and historical values a work reflects and embodies. Careful attention to both textual detail and historical context provides a foundation for interpreting a text.


Writing is also an integral part of the AP English Literature and Composition course and of the AP Exam. Writing assignments in the course will address the critical analysis of literature and will include expository, analytical, and argumentative essays. In addition, creative-writing assignments such as response and reaction papers, freewriting, or keeping a journal will help you see from the inside how literature is written. The goal of both types of writing assignments is to increase your ability to explain clearly and cogently what you understand about literary works and how you interpret them.

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