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3 min read•november 11, 2020

Jeanne Stansak

The AP Microeconomics Exam consists of two sections: (1) Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQs) and (2) Free-Response Questions (FRQs). The multiple-choice section consists of 60 questions, each with 5 answer choices. You have 70 minutes for the multiple-choice section which gives you a little over a minute per question. The Free-Response section consists of three questions: one long question and two short questions. 📚

A couple of important rules for the test:

- No calculators

- No colored pencils/pens (Blue or black pens only)

Below is the breakdown of each section of the exam including the types of questions, how many questions, weighting and timing. ⏳

The AP Micro exam assesses content from the following four ideas for the course. Every question whether it be multiple-choice or free-response will involve content from these four areas. 📖

The College Board has given us a basic breakdown of how much each concept will be covered on the exam 📊:

In this section, you will have a total of 60 questions in which you will be tested on your ability to (1) define economic principles and models, (2) explain given economic outcomes, (3) determine outcomes of specific economic situations, and (4) answer questions based on a graph or visual representation that is provided. There will be about 20 - 30% of the multiple-choice questions that ask you to analyze number or perform calculations.

- Read the question carefully. Pay close attention to specific wording, like the word "NOT", used in the stem of the question.

- Try to answer the question yourself before reading the answer choices.

- Guess if you can eliminate one or more answer choices.

- If you are really lost on where to begin, try looking for answer choices that mean the same thing but are worded differently; these can be eliminated right off the bat!

- Remember that drawing a picture/graph can help.

- Don't spend too much time on any one question! Move on and come back to a tricky question later.

All of these questions can be found in the AP Microeconomics Course and Exam Description. Try the next few questions out! All the answers are at the bottom of this section.

Answer Key:

1. B; This is basically the application of the definition of scarcity. Limited resources vs. unlimited wants.

2. C, the concept of marginal analysis

2. (Yes, there were two questions that were number two LOL.) C; When applying the economics concept of marginal analysis, we maximize our time and resources by participating in an activity where marginal benefit equals marginal cost. In the graph above marginal benefit and marginal cost meet at S2.

4. C; Economic surplus is maximized where quantity demanded equals quantity supplied which, in the graph above, is P2 and Q2.

6. C; When we calculate cross-price elasticity, we always divide the percent change in quantity demanded of Good A by the percent change in price for Good B. For cross-price elasticity, we also keep the positive and negative signs intact. So for this problem, we will divide -5 (quantity demanded change for cheese) by a +2 (price change for bologna). The answer is a negative (-) 2.5, which means that the goods are complements.

12. E; Profit-maximizing quantity is where MR=MC, which in this graph is Q1. Revenue-maximizing quantity is where Total Revenue (TR) is highest, which means that MR=0. In this graph, that is at Q3.

Check out the FRQ Section of this Guide in the Complement on AP Macro at Fiveable!

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Exam Skills: FRQ/MCQ

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Unit 1: Basic Economic Concepts

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Unit 3: Production, Cost, and the Perfect Competition Model

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Unit 4: Imperfect Competition

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Unit 5: Factor Markets

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Unit 6: Market Failure and Role of Government