Government & Politics: United States

AP 537.103 | Online | Maria Schmidt


This online course is designed to maximize the learner experience, providing relevant AP content and pedagogy through meaningful engagement – all focused on best practices for preparing your AP students for success. It will include both synchronous and asynchronous instruction and participants will have the opportunity to receive individual feedback during virtual office hours each day. The course provides teachers with an overview of the basic structure and content necessary for an AP course in Government and Politics: United States. The instructor will focus on the development of learning activities and teaching strategies for use with each of the big ideas, learning objectives, essential knowledge, disciplinary practices, and reasoning processes included in each unit of the redesigned curriculum framework. Emphasis will be placed on the use of multiple resources in the teaching of the course as well as preparing students for the redesigned AP examination format. An analysis of AP examination questions will be included as well as a review of the standards for the grading of the exam. A major portion of the course is devoted to the development of units for an AP U.S. Government and Politics course by participants, including the learning activities and resources necessary for the implementation of such a course. This course is suitable for teachers new to AP U. S. Government and Politics as well as those experienced in the teaching of the course. Teachers with experience in teaching this AP Course will review a variety of approaches to course structure, and they will gain numerous teaching strategies to add to their toolboxes. Teachers new to this AP Course will learn about the course requirements as well as various curriculum strategies and teaching techniques that will assist them in offering their students a successful AP US Government and Politics course. Participants should have the textbook they will be using in their course (if that is known), and any other materials they may be using, available and accessible during the course. They should also have a copy of their 2024-2025 school calendar for planning purposes. These will be used as they work to develop units and lesson plans aligned to the curriculum requirements in the Course and Exam Description.


Maria Schmidt

Maria Schmidt

Maria Schmidt was the Supervisor of Social Studies K-12 for the Westfield Public Schools in Westfield, N.J. She taught social studies at Westfield High School and authored the curriculum and initiated and taught the law-related education courses and the AP United States Government and Politics course there. She is an attorney, former adjunct professor of education at Seton Hall University, former trustee of the NJ State Bar Foundation and member of its Law-Related Education Committee.

Dr. Schmidt has served as a Reader, Table Leader, and Question Leader at the annual scoring of the AP US Government and Politics examination and currently serves as a consultant for the College Board, leading AP workshops and summer institutes in the teaching of AP US Government and Politics throughout the United States. She is also an endorsed College Board Consultant to provide workshops in “AP Course Skills and Practices” and in “Developing Evidence-Based Written Arguments.”

Dr. Schmidt has authored teacher’s guides for the teaching of the AP US Government and Politics course and has reviewed and edited AP US Government and Politics test preparation materials for various publishers. Over the past several years she has worked with college textbook publishers in developing AP US Government and Politics teaching ancillaries for use with their U. S. Government and Politics textbooks.