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English Language-New (Session Full)

Paula M. Carbone

Paula M. Carbone is an Associate Professor at the University of Southern California in the Rossier School of Education, where she works with pre-service teachers and Ed.D students. Before then, she was an AP* English Language teacher in Los Angeles public schools for many years. During her tenure as a public high school teacher, she received National Board Certification and is a Writing Project Fellow from UCLA. Through research and professional development, she continues to have an active role in teaching high school students and working with teachers in the Los Angeles area for the promotion of academic writing with secondary students. Paula is committed to access and equity issues in AP* classes to allow for students’ intellectual advancement and informed engagement in economic, political, and social arenas.

Course Description

This presentation will include introduction and application of the new AP resources. Focus will be on instructional strategies to prepare students to engage with texts critically and to formulate informed arguments on issues of importance. While the intent is to prepare students for success on the AP English Language exam, the tension between “test prep” and curricular planning will be investigated through examination of in-depth rhetorical reading and writing approaches to highlight the current emphasis of the course and the test. Nurturing of mature perspectives and critical reading within the classroom will be explored through various texts, traditional print and multimodal. The basics of rhetoric for the AP classroom will be covered, with emphasis on analyzing and constructing texts using argument and persuasion. Participants should come prepared to engage in analysis of texts reflecting multiple genres, time periods, and perspectives, writing activities, unit lesson planning, multiple choice and free response test question construction, and discussions to share strategies. Through discussion and analysis, the workshop will provide strategies for helping to prepare students not only for the test, but also for life in a complex and ever-changing world.


Day 1

  • Overview: The test, the course, the audit.
  • Rhetoric for the AP™ English Composition classroom, including the five canons of rhetoric and a brief history of rhetorical principles.
  • Style: Using what students know to promote clarity and grace in writing.
  • Analysis: review of a rhetorical analysis to scaffold for students the difference between rhetorical analysis and the literary analysis, and elements to include in a rhetorical analysis.
  • Scoring calibration: Rhetorical Analysis. Examination of the 2018 question.

Day 2

  • Make explicit the rhetorical situation in writing and analysis
  • Use literary theory and critical topoi as a tool of analysis for texts of all genres, viewing ‘everything as an argument’
  • Strategies for strengthening students’ argument essays, using invention and arrangement.

Day 3

  • Examine the 2018 argument exam question.
  • Discuss interventions for students at “4” and “5” to move up the rubric
  • Expand students’ repertoires of practice through multiple perspectives in the rhetorical situation
  • Reading like a test maker: multiple choice
  • Review and discuss multiple-choice strategies.

Day 4

  • Engage with visual literacy and connect to reading strategies.
  • Reading strategy for synthesizing
  • Examine the 2018 synthesis exam question.
  • Putting it all together: Key units for the year
  • Pedagogical implications for underprepared students.