Ms. Earhart S AP Literature Course Syllabus

Ms. Earhart’s AP Literature Course Syllabus

Course Overview:

“The AP English Literature and Composition course aligns to an introductory college-level literary analysis course. The course engages students in the close reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature to deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure. As they read, students consider a work’s structure, style, and themes, as well as its use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone. Writing assignments include expository, analytical, and argumentative essays that require students to analyze and interpret literary works.” (The College Board, AP English Course Description, 2014)

Course Outline:

The course is designed to help students become skilled readers and writers through engagement with the following course requirements:

• Reading complex imaginative literature (fiction, drama, and poetry) appropriate for college-level study.

• Writing an interpretation of a piece of literature that is based on a careful observation of textual details, considering the work’s structure, style, and themes; the social and historical values it reflects and embodies; and such elements as the use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone

• Composing in several forms (e.g., narrative, expository, analytical, and argumentative essays) based on students’ analyses of literary texts

•Writing that proceeds through several stages or drafts, with revision aided by teacher and peers.

•Writing informally (e.g., response journals, textual annotations, collaborative writing), which helps students better understand the texts they are reading

• Revising work to develop

ü  A wide-ranging vocabulary used appropriately and effectively;

ü  A variety of sentence structures, including appropriate use of subordination and coordination;

ü  Logical organization, enhanced by techniques such as repetition, transitions, and emphasis;

ü  An effective use of rhetoric, including tone, voice, diction, and sentence structure.

Teacher Expectations: This course is taught as a college-level course, and with that comes college-level responsibilities. In order to be successful in this class, you will need to do the following:

·  Be committed to the course—it will require some time-intensive work. You have to put forth the effort in order to get the results, and you NEED TO READ!

·  Maintain a high level of academic integrity—I do not accept excuses, begging, cheating, or bribes, and there is NO EXTRA CREDIT. If you are struggling, come talk to me.

·  Make your absences minimal—if you are absent, make sure check my website for what you missed, complete the assignments, and then come to me if you have questions. You have one day per day absent to make up work.

·  Keep up with your classwork, reading, writing, and homework. DO NOT FALL BEHIND.

Grading: Students will be graded on a variety of formative and summative assessments including, but not limited to the following: Classwork, Homework, Journal Entries, Written Assignments (including timed writings, and formal multiple draft essays), Discussions/Class Participation, Reading, Projects/Presentations, Quizzes, and Tests (including AP practice tests)

Plagiarism and Cheating: In this class, plagiarism is considered the unauthorized use of the thoughts and words of another author as your own. I you plagiarize a work, either a published piece or one that your classmate has written, you will receive a zero for the assignment. If you are caught cheating on any assignment, you will be given a zero and reported to the administration. I have a ZERO tolerance policy for cheating.

Attendance: If you are absent from class it is your responsibility to get all of your missing assignments. This includes any notes, classwork, and homework. Notes and classwork will be placed on my web page. Any homework, writing assignment, reading, or project that was due on the day you were absent is due the day you return. You will have a one day extension to complete all work you missed while absent.

English Department Homework Policy: Homework will be graded for completion and effort to the satisfaction of the teacher, and is due at the beginning of class. Work that is incomplete will receive reduced credit. Late homework will NOT be given credit. All homework assignments are to benefit the progression of the student as a reader and writer, and will be used the following class for discussion, activities or assessment. DO YOUR HOMEWORK OR YOU WILL FALL BEHIND.

English Department Late Work Policy: Any work assigned outside of class, that is not homework, will be taken late with a 10% reduction in grade for every DAY it is late. Note: points are deducted each school day, not A or B day.

Supplies: I suggest that you have the following each class, though it is up to you to decide how you will be organized: pens and pencils, notebook paper, a 3-ring binder and dividers, 1 marble notebook for journal entries (required) , multi-colored highlighters, post-it notes, and a flashdrive, which is non-negotiable. Bring your flashdrive to each class so you always have your documents with you.

Electronics - Please turn off all electronic devices once you enter the room. I will treat you as an adult as long as you act like one, which means being respectful and not using your electronic device during class. Using your phone in class is prohibited unless I specifically ask you or tell you to use it for research or reading. If this becomes a class problem, you will all be assigned a pocket in the hanging bin in which to place your phone for the duration of class.

Teacher Accessibility: I would like to extend an open line of communication to both students and parents. To ensure the success of all the students in the class, it is important that parents and teachers communicate throughout the year. Please know that the easiest way to reach me is via e-mail; however, I can also be reached by phone. You can also access class information through the school website, and I will post assignments as well as class work and notes for extra access. If there is ever a time that you need to schedule a conference, please know that you must make an appointment to ensure that I am available.

Book List:

This is a tentative list and is subject to change. I encourage you purchase your own copies to annotate, which will help with reviewing before the test. You can acquire some of the works online for free, but please make sure you can annotate. If you have any questions or issues, please come see me.

Othello - Shakespeare

The Awakening - Chopin

A Doll’s House - Ibson

Farewell to Arms - Hemingway

Their Eyes were Watching God - Hurston

The Kite Runner - Hosseinii

Scarlet Letter - Hawthorne

Heart of Darkness - Conrad

Oedipus Rex - Sophocles

(Adapted & Revised from Jessica Berg)

The AP English Literature and Composition course is designed to help you engage 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 provide both meaning and pleasure for their readers. In the course, you’ll learn to consider a work's structure, style, and themes, as well as such smaller-scale elements 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-level literary analysis course in college. The course 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. Although the course will cover several literary texts, you will also have the opportunity to get to know a few works well. In the course, you will 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. In addition to considering a work's literary artistry, you will also learn to consider the social and historical values it reflects and embodies. Careful attention to both textual detail and historical context provides a foundation for interpretation of the text.


The close reading described above involves the experience, interpretation, and evaluation of literature. All these aspects of reading are important in the AP English Literature and Composition course, and each corresponds to an approach to writing about literary works. Writing to understand a literary work may involve writing response and reaction papers along with annotation, freewriting, and keeping some form of a reading journal. Writing to explain a literary work involves analysis and interpretation and may include writing brief, focused analyses on aspects of language and structure. Writing to evaluate a literary work involves making and explaining judgments about its artistry and exploring its underlying social and cultural values through analysis, interpretation, and argument.

Writing is 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 to the critical analyses you will write, creative-writing assignments 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, cogently, and even elegantly what you understand about literary works and how you interpret them.

The Exam

The exam is three hours long and has two parts — multiple choice and free response. The multiple choice section is worth 45% and the free response section is worth 55% of the final exam grade.

Section I: Multiple Choice— 55 Questions; 1 hour

The multiple choice section tests your critical reading skills. You'll read several passages and answer questions about the content, form, and style of each.

Total scores on the multiple-choice section are based on the number of questions answered correctly. Points are not deducted for incorrect answers and no points are awarded for unanswered questions.

Section II: Free Response— 3 essays; 2 hours

The free response section tests your ability to analyze and interpret literary texts by composing clear and effective essay responses.