Mastering the Essay - AP World Handbook | Sherpa Learning

Mastering the Essay - AP World Handbook


Mastering the Essay - Instructional Handbook for AP World History

Advanced Writing and Historical Thinking Skills for AP* World History

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AP World History
Description and Overview 

Mastering the Essay is a supplemental resource focused on building strong essay-writing and historical thinking skills, and has been specifically created for the redesigned Advanced Placement* World History curriculum framework and 2017 exam. Mastering the Essay comes in two parts:

Instructional Handbook

The Instructional Handbook is divided into units that parallel the writing process, so students learn to write excellent essays by building their writing skills one step at a time—from thesis to the closing paragraph. Additionally, the Handbook offers guided examples for all of the exercise types included in the Exercise Workbook.

  • Based around a simple but powerful SIX-STEP WRITING PROCESS
  • Detailed guidance on the new source-based MULTIPLE-CHOICE and SHORT-ANSWER QUESTION formats
  • Includes a simple DOCUMENT ANALYSIS STRATEGY for tackling the primary and secondary source documents
  • ONLINE UPDATES as changes are made to the AP World curriculum or exam
  • Invaluable EXAM PREPAREDNESS TIPS and a collection of KEY TERMS

Exercise Workbook

The Exercise Workbook (Available Summer 2017) contains over 100 practice exercises designed to strengthen the skills introduced in the Instructional Handbook. Additionally, the Workbook includes three Practice Tests (writing sections only), as well as complete answers and explanations for each and every exercise.

  • OVER 100 EXERCISES approved by experienced exam readers
  • COMPLETE ANSWERS AND EXPLANATIONS for each and every exercise
  • ORGANIZED CHRONOLOGICALLY so you can choose exercises that coordinate with the topics and themes covered in class
  • Developed by a small business focused exclusively on delivering Advanced Placement resources of the highest quality

From the Author

What’s the biggest challenge faced by your AP World History students this year? As they begin to master the content, you will find that writing clear, direct, persuasive essays is their biggest challenge—and the most important skill for them to master. Our biggest challenge, as teachers of AP World History, is trying to help them develop their essay-writing skills without sacrificing valuable time needed for content instruction. That’s where Mastering the Essay comes in.

Mastering the Essay was designed to help students learn to write clear, direct, persuasive essays in the context of their AP World History course. That means, as their teacher, you can teach writing skills AND content within the same class period. No matter what content you happen to be teaching, Mastering the Essay has a writing exercise for your students—regardless of their current skill-level.

Mastering the Essay aims to change the way we teach writing skills within our AP World History classes, and Sherpa Learning aims to change how educational resources are developed. We want to provide resources that help you to help your students without adding more hours to your already overloaded work schedule, AND we want those resources to reflect your needs by involving you at every step along the way. Join our team to help us develop and test exciting, new content!


Tony Maccarella

About the Author

Author Tony Maccarella

Tony Maccarella taught AP European History at Parsippany Hills High School in Parsippany, NJ for over a decade. Prior to teaching at Parsippany Hills, he taught at Egg Harbor Township High School and Dunellen Senior High School. Tony has been teaching social studies since 1982, and besides European History, he has taught World History, AP US History, Comparative Governments, Anthropology, Psychology, Economics and Military History.

Since 2002, Tony has served as a Reader and Table Leader for the AP European History exam. He is responsible for scoring AP European History exam questions, supervising other readers, and assisting with the clarification of scoring standards.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in History from St. Joseph’s University and a Masters in Teaching and Learning from Nova Southeastern University. In 1988, Tony was a New Jersey Governor’s School teacher-scholar, and in 1990, he was awarded the New Jersey Governor’s Teacher Grant for his “History in the News” activity, a writing skills program that employs the journalistic process in the history classroom.

Tony is an avid traveler. He has bicycled across the United States, studied in China, and traveled through Italy with students from seven different History classes. When he is not writing or traveling, Tony likes to build things, including a 1968 Camaro, a kitchen, several desktop computers, and a portable aluminum decking system trademarked as the Porta-Deck.