Students are assigned a project to predict what type of question will appear on future exams based on what has appeared on past exams. All exams from the past 10 years are made available to students and questions are grouped according to content and topic. Scoring guidelines are used so that students can immediately see the answer, and so therefore know the topic quickly. A spreadsheet is created with topics and then each question is described under the heading.
Depending on the time frame, if a shorter time is needed, the excel document can be just handed to students, and they can be in charge of determining patterns, and determining likely topics for the exam. However, if time allows, then the students are in charge of also determining topics, creating the spreadsheet and then determining patterns. Now further guidance is required, but the learning process is perhaps enhanced.
The assignment is for students to create a new 6 question free response exam based on old questions. Each question must come from an old exam, must include 2 calculator and 4 non calculator questions, with a variety of different function-types to work with.
The 8 page word document includes the assignment description and ALL the exam question topics categorized, with topics also listed for each a) b) c) d) part of each of the 6 questions for most of the last 10 years exams. The exam questions from each year themselves are not included, but are easily searched. Alternatively, I could happily email them as a bundle to you later. (Those questions are obviously not my property. ) The 7 different categories of questions are chosen, and all questions and parts are sorted by category.
Easiest category for students to find is area and rotational and cross section volume. 6-7 other major categories are then developed.
Once the 7 Excel spreadsheets are made, patterns among questions can be found. Did you know that differential equations and slope fields are on every exam in he last 5 years and questions and have recently always been in the no-technology section? That volume/area of a region R have been on every exam in the last ten years? When data tables for a function are given, the questions repeat a pattern and are usually in the technology permitted question? Further Patterns can seen from previous exams and are then discussed. Answers included.
This is an ongoing process and will be updated. Buyers can update their purchases without re-purchasing the file.
A checklist for student is included to ensure they have chosen an appropriate selection of topics.
A great review assignment for calculus whether or not you are teaching AP exam material.
Not sure where to start for exam preparation I just answered some of your questions :)
See Making Math Matter MMM for further precalclulus and calculus materials as they are uploaded.