Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

The teacher was great, the material was interesting, challenging, and helpful for the exam. The videos that we watched provided extra information on many political topics. The discussions with the other students were thought-provoking and a good exercise in expressing opinions on political matters.

AP Class Reviews

AP Human Geography taught by Dr. Carol Ann Gillespie

by Students and Parents

Super Interesting Class, although the structure is not my style posted by Abigail C. on May 29 2019 at 01:32:50

AP Human Geography certainly was an interesting class. I've always been fascinated with history and exploration of environmental conservation, and I was delighted that the class covered topics such as that. For a small summary of how the course is set up, I'd say that most of it is reading. Every week, we are assigned reading in one of 2 books, and then we frequently have to respond to discussion questions that the books provide, or take quizzes/answer SAQs that Dr. Gillespie provided. While this certainly could be a good base, it didn't make for much variety. Honestly, I found myself pretty bored with the class, and this didn't motivate me to do my work. In the end, I really learned the most when I was self-studying before the exam itself.

In addition, there really wasn't THAT much class interaction. While students posted frequently on the main discussion board (shout-out to my fellow APHG-ers!), interaction wasn't exactly... encouraged. It almost seemed like we were left to do the class on our own without weekly emails/ tips/ or any of that.

Let me tell you, this subject matter is so cool! I just didn't feel that this class was right for me. I'm sure that there are people out there that will love all the reading, though! Good luck to all.


Class review for AP Human Geography posted by Caroline Cousar on May 28 2019 at 13:41:55

I have thoroughly enjoyed this class. Dr. Gillespie was a wonderful teacher, and I felt more than prepared for the exam. The extra websites and review games she provided in preparation for the exam were great practice. Her quiz and test questions were very similar to the actual exam, so that was very helpful. I loved the Kuby workbook activities. Those activities helped me to understand the main concepts really well, and that was very beneficial for the AP FRQ questions. In addition to this course, I did 5 practice exams, read Dr. Gillespie's 5 Steps to a Five Book, reviewed the barrons flashcards, and read the AP Human Geography Princeton review book. I know this seems like a lot, but I feel like it really prepared me for the exam. All in all, I was very happy with this course, and I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting to succeed in AP Human Geography.


AP Human Geography Class Review posted by Elliott Jones on May 23 2019 at 04:09:06

Overall, I enjoyed this class!  The course adequately prepared me for the AP Exam, but it might not hurt to use Dr. Gillepsie's "5 Steps to a 5" book as well as Barron's AP Human Geography review book and flashcards.  I would estimate that I put between 2-8 hours per week in this course in September-April.  In May, I spent an average of 3-4 hours per weekday during intensive review for the AP exam.  In terms of assignments, there were two principal types of assignments, and they each served their respective purposes.  Reading assignments from the Fellman textbook were more conceptual and dense (it often took me 3+ hours to get through an average of 25-35 pages per chapter), while the Kuby textbook had more basic summaries as well as applications (generally no more than an hour per chapter).  All assignments associated with the readings are generally due on one night, so time management is key, so you aren't cramming in reading assignments on the last day (Monday in this year's case).  I fell into Monday night speed-reading a few many times, and I would wholeheartedly recommend spending 1-2 hours per weekday on the course for better retaining of knowledge.  I also enjoyed the assignments associated with the Kuby textbook, which brought real-life applications of human geography into our class.  I appreciated that Fellman readings were often followed by Kuby readings, giving students a "breather" week as well as more real-life applications of the concept.  The course did really enhance my interest in the subject.  Although I found my communications with other students to be interesting, I would have preferred a live class, which in my opinion, would have fostered so much more interaction.  In terms of students that would do well in this course, I could recommend this course to anyone between 8th and 12th grades.  Another thing about this class is you don't really need to be a whiz in any certain area to succeed in this course.  Human geography basically takes a little bit of everything from a spatial perspective (politics, economics, culture, cities, agriculture, geographical concepts, etc.) and merges it into a coherent course.  A basic knowledge of the above topics will be fine.  I would recommend this course to other students as a great introductory AP course, although it can also be a great AP course for older high schoolers.

On a side note, for getting a higher score on the AP exam, I highly recommend taking as many practice exams as possible, just to get the procedure ingrained in your brain.  I believe I ended up taking four practice exams, but if I were to do it over, I might do double that number.  The AP Human Geography Exam is just above 2 hours (as opposed to 3 hours for most other AP exams), so it is much easier to block out time for practice exams.


Class review posted by Kaylie Jones on May 21 2019 at 17:21:31

This class was great. I got confused a few times with the scheduling but overall it was very good.


Human Geography Is for Everyone posted by Joshua Miller on May 20 2019 at 18:30:28

Coming into this class, my geography was less than stellar, and my understanding of human geography was all but non-existent. Dr. Gillespie is an excellent instructor! She is knowledgeable, encouraging, flexible, and someone worth getting to know. AP Human Geography gave me an understanding of geography from the perspective of life, how we live it, why political leaders make decisions based on natural boundaries, what makes a cities development the way they do, … I would recommend this class to anyone. There isn’t a particular student that fits the mold, it’s just a great class for understanding why the world works the way it does. Students all communicate with each other which keeps everyone connected.

The book recommendations are great! You’ll find yourself making time to get through the list. The additional reading was my favorite part of the class. Without the additional (optional) reading this class took me about 8 hours a week, but I am NOT a fast reader. 

As for the AP test, it was more difficult than I had prepared for. I don’t think that’s a reflection on this class, but anyone prepping for AP exams needs extra time to do so.

This is a great class, I highly recommend it!


Human Geography Is for Everyone posted by Joshua Miller on May 20 2019 at 18:29:23

Coming into this class, my geography was less than stellar, and my understanding of human geography was all but non-existent. Dr. Gillespie is an excellent instructor! She is knowledgeable, encouraging, flexible, and someone worth getting to know. AP Human Geography gave me an understanding of geography from the perspective of life, how we live it, why political leaders make decisions based on natural boundaries, what makes a cities development the way they do, … I would recommend this class to anyone. There isn’t a particular student that fits the mold, it’s just a great class for understanding why the world works the way it does. Students all communicate with each other which keeps everyone connected.

The book recommendations are great! You’ll find yourself making time to get through the list. The additional reading was my favorite part of the class. Without the additional (optional) reading this class took me about 8 hours a week, but I am NOT a fast reader. 

As for the AP test, it was more difficult than I had prepared for. I don’t think that’s a reflection on this class, but anyone prepping for AP exams needs extra time to do so.

This is a great class, I highly recommend it!


Thorough, maybe even too thorough. posted by Elliot Kuo on May 20 2019 at 12:42:46


AP Human Geography: It Will Change Your Year! posted by Gabriella Rogers on May 19 2019 at 08:03:16

This course was a wonderful addition to my freshman year of highschool! I felt extremely well prepared for the AP exam. In Dr. Gillespie's book, 5 Steps to a 5, there were practice exams and through the website, she assigned us practice Free Response Questions and then graded them as they would in the real exam. This all provided me with confidence so that there was nothing unexpected or confusing about the AP exam.

This course was not extremely burdensome and the assignments really brought the concepts from the textbook into the real world. There were no assignments that I thought unnecessary, all of them contributed to my understanding of human geography in some way. I specifically enjoyed the field work as I was able to apply the human geography concepts to my local environment. For those of us who are not fans of writing, I can only recall writing one essay, and if there were more, I can not remember, so they could not have been too traumatizing!

I appreciated the WWW Board which provided an easy way to communicate with other students. We were able to share fascinating articles or ask questions. I am currently living in Kuwait and I found that it made no difference with my communication with the other students or submitting my assignments.
Dr. Gillespie was a wonderful teacher. In her weekly videos, it could clearly be told that she loved human geography! She provided valuable feedback to the assignments and how we could improve. As mentioned before, her feedback for the practice Free Response Questions was particularly helpful.

While I was hesitant about this not being a live class, I found it to be no problem. Reading the textbooks, watching Dr. Gillespie's weekly videos, and completing the assignments provided me with all the information I needed to feel prepared for the AP exam.

I highly recommend this course for students willing to work hard to achieve a 5 on the exam. While one can simply take the course, to do well, it does take a certain amount of effort and determination, like everything in the world. To do well, it is key that one uses a good review program towards the end of the year, such as 5 Steps to a 5. In the syllabus, as the end of the year nears, Dr. Gillespie writes, 'study for AP exam'. It is up to the students how they decide to do this. To be prepared for the exam, one must put in much time and effort. If not, then it is highly likely one will not feel confident or ready for the exam.


Dr. Gillespie's Amazing APHG Class! posted by Aspen Singh on May 18 2019 at 13:37:55

After taking Dr. Gillespie’s class, I felt extremely prepared for the AP Human Geography exam. Most weeks we had extensive reading from one of our two textbooks, and we did quite a few activities requiring online resources. The online activities were fun, and they really helped me to understand the topic we were learning about. We also did a few field activities, such as Sense of my Place, in which we described the area where we live. Dr. Gillespie provided us with practice AP exams, which were the most helpful part of the class.

On average I spent around 5-6 hours a week on Human Geography. In the weeks we read the Fellmann textbook I worked more than I did in the weeks when we read the Kuby textbook. Towards the end Dr. Gillespie tapered off the workload so that we could focus more on studying for the exam, which was really helpful.

APHG was my first AP class, and after taking it, I feel extremely prepared to take more AP classes in the future. I would recommend this class to everyone, either as a “gateway” to more AP classes in the future or as a course to enhance your knowledge of geography.


Review of AP Human Geography posted by Vera Syers on May 18 2019 at 13:16:05

Dr. Gillespie's AP Human Geography course prepared me very well for the exam, and, in addition to studying her "5 Steps to a 5" review book, I felt pretty comfortable when the exam day finally came. I finished both sections of the exam with time to spare, and feel that I did well on it.

   Near the end of the course, Dr. Gillespie assigned us practice multiple-choice sections and essay questions. These were really helpful in studying for the exam.  It usually takes about an hour a day to get the week's homework done at a reasonable pace.  If you're a speed-reader, it will come in handy because most of the homework consists of reading chapters in the two workbooks.  In addition to reading, Dr. Gillespie assigned us some interactive activities online which were fun and helpful in showing how places change over time.  

  One of my favorite activities was when she told us to write a paper on the important model of demographic transition.  I felt that it gave me a much better understanding of the model, and was really beneficial for the exam.  When I began the course, I wasn't very interested in geography, let alone human geography.  After taking this course, however, I'm seeing things from geography on TV and understanding patterns of human life much better.  We had a discussion board to interact with the other students, post questions, and have a little fun.  It was nice to know you're not alone, and to ask questions about the homework assignments or anything else.  

  To do well in this course, you have to be able to keep up with the workload.  It is not very hard, but sometimes consists of lengthy assignments. Dr. Gillespie provides us with a very flexible schedule though, which is perfect for internationally traveling students.  I recommend this course to anyone that wants a better understanding of our world, and as an introduction to AP classes and AP test-taking.


Take this course! posted by Benjamin Pearson on May 17 2019 at 13:31:12

Hello all, this class is perfect for your first AP or if you're doing multiple classes and don't want to overwork yourself. Mrs. Gillespie prepares you, quite well, to take the exam. This class is great whether you know what interests you, or have no idea. The subject is interesting and is a great way to learn about the world you live in. I am so glad I took this course and you will be to!


AP Human Geography posted by Faith Hefner on May 17 2019 at 13:13:58

I was so happy with this course! I had little to no interest in human geography before I took this course, but I found many of the topics to be very interesting (especially the economics and development portions). I was well prepared for the AP exam. Dr. Gillespie was very responsive to questions, and I was easily able to communicate with other students via the WWW Board and Skype groups. The other students in the class were always adding extra geography information to the WWW Broad which was a fun way to interact. 

In general, I spent about 8 hours a week on this class with some weeks taking more time and others less. There is a lot of reading in this course, but as long as you keep up with it, you will be fine. My favorite assignments were the Kuby online assignments. They were really engaging and enhanced my learning. Overall, I highly recommend this class.


My favorite online class! posted by Hope Liu on June 22 2018 at 15:42:12

I thoroughly enjoyed Dr. Gillespie's AP Human Geography class this year! There was a lot of reading which could be time-consuming but ultimately benefited me. I spent around an hour every day but it was definitely manageable work. I have an extremely busy schedule and Dr. Gillespie's course allowed for a lot of flexibility for me which I greatly appreciate. Some of my favorite assignments were the application activities and the online assignments with the Kuby textbook. They were fun to do and also very eye-opening. One of the best things about this course is that we read from two different textbooks. Usually, we'll spend two weeks on one subject area, one week per textbook. This has helped me a lot in processing and retaining information. Not only do you get to spend more time on each topic but you also get to hear it from two different perspectives which has been extremely beneficial. While I do not intend to study human geography in the future, this class was very fun and helped me have a better view of the world. It's a great course to take if you wish to be a well-informed, well-rounded student as I saw it help me in many other subjects. As my first online class with other students, communication on the discussion board was something I really enjoyed. It was great to work with other people who were just as motivated and it was great seeing and reading all the things they had to share. I think many students would do well with this course but it may be difficult for students who do not like or have difficulties with reading. There is a lot of reading in this class and I found that if you do not process all the information, completing the related assignments can be very difficult. However, in terms of the actual difficulty, this class would be a great starter course for students just starting to take APs. I took this course as a sophomore but I can definitely see a freshman (a motivated and perseverant one) taking this class. Dr. Gillespie has been absolutely wonderful to work with and I believe this is a great course to take for students who are new to online classes or APs. I loved working with Dr. Gillespie and with other students. This is an amazing class!


Great class! posted by Patience Parrott on June 19 2018 at 17:52:54

The course was a splendid review for the AP exam! I felt that I did well, and Dr. Gillespie equipped me with examples, knowledge of the models and how they work, without any superfluous information in the way.

I put approximately two hours a day into this course, and reading the Kuby book really helped me. I would recommend keeping a notebook filled with the terms, though, so it's easier to remember and review!

AP Human Geography is a little difficult to understand at first- I would recommend it to any student who enjoys memorization, and is willing to put in a bit of time to understand the models. 

Again, Dr. Gillespie was great, and I would recommend this class!


Worth the Work posted by Caleb Johnson on May 25 2018 at 24:05:09

AP Human Geography is basically the study of the way humans interact with each other and the environment.  That's a very broad topic!  This class helped break it down into manageable pieces using two great textbooks.  I really liked how the same topic would often be covered twice, once in one textbook and again in another.  It definitely prepared me for the exam by solidifying those topics in my memory.  However, I think that writing down every vocab word I came across throughout the year was crucial also.  It was not a requirement for the class, but Dr. Gillespie did reccommend it and that really helped!

This class usually took up about 5 to 8 hours a week depending on how much work we were assigned.  Most of that time was spent reading the material.  It is a ton of reading!  One assignment was to draw my perception of my neighborhood.  I really enjoyed that.

Taking this class gave me an awesome overview of the geographer's lingo, how culture traits spread, how businesses chose locations, and much more.  The class website was a great tool to see my classmates questions and to ask questions of my own.

I would recommend this class to any student that enjoys learning new stuff (a majority of the stuff I learned were things I'd never thought about).  Because of the broad scope of this class, anyone will enjoy parts of it.  I thank Dr. Gillespie for her answers to my many questions each month, and for providing a great medium to learn about humans in geography.


Excellent Class! posted by Carissa Samuel on May 25 2018 at 04:48:08

I thoroughly enjoyed this past year of APHG! It was very interesting and beneficial. Dr. Gillespie has piled together a lot of engaging content to keep this class both fun and useful. 

I felt relatively prepared for the exam. The only confusing element to me was the amount of detail I was supposed to remember. Dr. Gillespie's quizzes were very helpful for this and provide a realistic idea of how well I know the content. 

I generally put in a very minimal amount of work for the course that lasted generally below 5 hours in a week although there were times I needed slightly more. 

I found the outside videos and resources very interesting and they were probably my favorite in this course. They made me interested in the topic of Human Geography which I had never really thought about before. 

I ended up forming a study group with a couple of other classmates as well as communicating with them throughout the year. This helped with the AP review, especially. 

I would recommend this course to almost any kind of student, especially as a good starting point for AP courses in general. :)


AP Human Geography posted by Samuel Borger on May 24 2018 at 21:19:12

Although I usually am stressed before big exams, I feel like this class prepared me well for the exam. Dr. Gillespies tests are more difficult then the actual exam, and so they were helpful in preparing. I usually put in about 4-8 hours per week, depending on what was due that week. The kuby book activities really helped me understand what I was learning better. While it didn't enhance my interest in Human Geography, it did make me "see" things around me differnetly sometimes. Being able to communicate with other students was a valuable tool when I was trying to figure out what to do on some activities. I would recommend this class to other students.


posted by Caden Bow on May 24 2018 at 13:33:01

This class definitely prepares you extremely well for the exam. Dr Gillespie does a phenomenal job providing guidance and answering any questions on the material we may have. I also enjoyed the fact that we're able to communicate easily with the other students on the website. It's a cool way to get to know each other and get quick responses to any quesitons we have. This was a fun class and I learned a lot.


AP Human Geography 2017-2018 posted by Katie on May 23 2018 at 22:19:47

     This was a good experience for my first AP class. Overall, the workload was manageable, and I liked how the schedule was staggered so that close to the exam, I had plenty of time to study and prepare for it. I enjoyed the brevity of the Kuby textbook, and the activities were a good way to reinforce what I had just learned. The Fellman textbook was quite dry and hard to understand – but it is a college textbook. Using the Kaplan guide was by far my favorite way to learn the material from this class. It took the long, drawn-out, complex ideas of the Fellman textbook combined with the brevity and conciseness of the Kuby book and made the information understandable for me. The Practice Exams in it might be a little easier than the actual exam, but Practice Tests are easy to find elsewhere. I 100% recommend this book to anyone who is taking this class!

     Going into the test, I was slightly worried. I had put in the time reviewing and studying over the course of the year, and I am really hoping that shows on my exam score. I think anyone dedicated to spending their own time to study for the exam will do well in this class, but you have to be self-disciplined. I joined a Study Group with a couple of classmates and we quizzed each other on questions from the “Big Ideas” and practice FRQs together. It really helped me to see what is and is not necessary in my response for the actual exam.

    I appreciated Dr. Gillespie’s enthusiasm and wealth of knowledge on the material covered. She is definitely passionate about Human Geography! She was more than willing to work with me when a medical emergency happened midway through the year. She allowed me to catch up at my own pace, and was very encouraging along the way.


Class Review posted by Taylor Lowell on May 23 2018 at 15:06:03

I felt fully prepared for the AP exam when it came along. For this class I spent about 5-6 hours a week working on the chapters and projects and tests/quizes. I found any/all of the online activities that we did from the kuby textbook. The course did enhance my interest in the subject. At the beginning it was interesting and now I am very interested in human geography. I think a student that is fully committed to taking the class would do well, or if they are interested in this subject going into the class. Yes I would recommend the course to students that are willing to put in hard work to succeed in the class.


AP human geography course review posted by Colton Roark on May 23 2018 at 14:21:20

I felt that the course did a good job in preparing me for the exam. I estimate I spent less than two hours a day depending on the assignment. At first I thought that human geography was not that interesting to me, but as the course went on I developed an interest in the subject. I also really liked how the WWW Board made it feel as though I was in a real class with other students, also I think Dr. Gillespie did a great job on answering questions I had and in a timely manner both through E-mail or the WWW Board.


Review of Dr. Gillespie's AP Human Geography Class posted by Madeline on May 23 2017 at 19:53:04

I felt like this course prepared me well for the AP exam--although I was nervous taking it (of course) I felt very confident in my understanding of the concepts this course taught me. The homework was really not a huge time investment for me--it certainly requires doing, of course, and you must be disciplined about scheduling it out over various days for yourself--however, if you are disciplined and commited to doing the work it should not be a problem at all. In the scheme of things this class was a very low-stress one for me, and a great intro to AP. However, this all being said it is not a meaningless or trivial course. Although in the moment doing the reading I felt some weeks it was all rather boring, I feel like this course has greatly enriched my understanding of the world. Problems in it and ways people overcome them, how it works, what other places are like. My place within it all, etc. It's rather hard to describe, but I can say without a doubt that this course has greatly enriched me and made me a more informed citizen of the world, and I would certainly take it again. I loved the weekly videos. I found them interesting, educational, and enjoyable. However, I did wish they were more current. A lot of the topics seemed of a rather time-sensitive nature, and made me wonder what's going on with those situations now! 


AP Human Geography Class Review posted by Mason Stempel on May 22 2017 at 16:44:04

This class was an excellent blend of reading, activities, and review that prepared me well for the exam. My time in the class was enjoyable and educational, and though the workload is challenging, it did not hold me back from performing well in the class. Almost every week, there are interesting videos that relate to the week's topic to watch, which enhance your interest in the subject while keeping you informed. Communication between students allowed for discussions on certain world events and interaction that added to the class experience positively. Students who work hard and are willing to participate in some class discussion will do great in this class!

I highly recommend this class to students, especially if it's your first AP class! Dr. Gillespie is a wonderful teacher and is very patient. She'll help you if you have any sort of trouble during the year! :D


AP Human Geo review posted by Emma Lowe on May 19 2017 at 12:59:33

This was a more interesting class than I expected; I started out the year not knowing a thing about Human Geography, and ended it by feeling semi-confident in my answers on the AP test. While this class mostly prepared me for the test, you will need to exercise self-discipline in studying for the test. There's not any review assigned to the class - you have to purchase your own review book (Dr. Gillespie recommends her review book, but I found the Princeton Review to be quite helpful, too) and study on your own time. 

On average, I spent maybe 2-3 hours a week on this class. It's definitely not time intensive, and if you're a quick reader, the texts don't take too long. They're quite dry at times, but that's college-level textbooks for you. 

If you learn best in a lecture situation or like live components, don't take this class. I don't mind working independently without a live lecture, so it wasn't an issue for me, but I do see how others might struggle a bit. She is a hands-off teacher, so if you like guidance and structure, this might not be a good fit. 

This is a great first AP class to take - it's not as time-intensive as, say, AP US History, and the essays for the free-response questions on the AP exam don't even have to be in a formal essay format.


AP human geography review posted by Grace Wiratunga on May 17 2017 at 04:39:16

Though I began the year with a dislike for geography, I enjoyed this class more than I ever expected.  I did not feel as prepared for the exam as I would have liked, but that is mostly because of my own procrastination.  I usually put in about 2 or 3 hours of work a week into the assignments.  Now that I have taken the AP test, I realize that in the second semester of the course, I needed to put more effort into studying.  The class did not have many actual review assignments, but Dr. Gillespie did remind us to keep reviewing for the test.

 I really enjoyed being able to communicate with the other students in the class.  At first, I thought a class without a lecture would be really boring, but since we could share our thoughts with each other on the website, it made the course a lot more enjoyable.  I think this class is a good first AP class.  The assignments were pretty easy, and the course was not overwhelming.  I think this class gave me a valuable experience as my first AP class and also my first class without an actual lecture.


Class Review posted by Carly Stewart on May 15 2017 at 16:20:43

This was a great first AP class to take and by using the review book I did feel like this course prepared me for the exam. Although becasue there were not that many review assignments to do, I did find the reviewing process a little more difficult. I spent about 1 or 2 hours per day on this course, depending on what needed to be done, if there was reading and activites, it would take a longer time. The assignment that I found valuable was 'A Sense of My Place Fieldtrip.' It was a great way of knowing my place and my neighborhood around me. I also found the Kuby activites valuable, even though sometimes they were difficult, they were also very helpful. I had never done anything involving human geography before this class, so I did not have much interest in the subject. I found the communication with other students valuable, when there where certain times I needed help or didn't know what to do. Going to see what my other classmates had to say was great and very helpful. I would recommend this class to anyone who is interested in geography, politics, and economics. This course is also great for anybody who can work and study hard. I would definetly reccomend this course to other students who are willing to put the time and hard work into this course.  


AP HUG Review posted by Garrett Hidalgo on May 15 2017 at 13:08:48

     I feel the course did prepare as much as it could, and that I knew what was coming.  I think my learning style suits live classes better, but Dr. Gillespie helped me in finding videos so I could have that lecture element that I do best with.  I spent usually about an hour and 15 minutes per day, depending on what I needed to get done that day.  The longest days where when I had to read from the Fellman textbook.  The chapters are long, and I usually split them up over a couple of days so i wouldn't be brain dead by the end of the chapter.  I think the Kuby activities really solidified the knowledge that we were covering that week.  Being forced to work with the terms we were learning helped me memorize and understand the information much better than just reading it and taking a quiz on it.  I didn't really know what Human Geography was before this class, so I didn't really have a huge interest in it.  I still enjoy math and science much more, because that is how my brain works.  :-)  The communication with the students helped me a lot when I was confused about something.  With my other online classes, I try to get the e-mails of a few students in the class so I can ask them a question if need be, but with this setup, I was able to get everybody's feedback.  I would recommend this class to a person who is not afraid of, and even good at, reading a textbook and using that as there main source.  That was not something I was used to.  Yes I had textbooks, but I had always had a lecture to go with the textbook.  I have become used to taking notes on things I hear, not things I read, so that was a bit of a learning curve for me.  But if a person is not afraid of that and willing to study hard, then they should be fine in this class.  


Good First AP Class posted by Daniel Scrugham on May 13 2017 at 17:23:44

I had never taken an AP class before this AP Human Geography class with Dr. Gillespie. The class prepared me for the exam very well, although I also used supplementary preparation materials. One thing that prepared me well for the exam in this class was the books that Dr. Gillespie had us use. Although most AP Human Geography students use the Rubenstein book, we used two other books instead that I found were better (although somewhat long and boring at certain times). In addition, Dr. Gillespie's own review book she wrote called "5 Steps to a 5" was very helpful review, as it had important tips for both sections of the AP exam.

I put about 5-8 hours a week into the class originally, but as the exam drew near and I needed to review, I spent about 8-15 hours a week (most of the review was not assigned, I did it on my own).

The course definitely enhanced my interest in the subject. It wasn't about memorizing boring states (or geographically speaking, provinces), countries, or capitols. Instead, human geography involved learning about humans and their interaction with the environment. I learned about relevant happenings in the world today. I have always been interested in current events, so the class was fun and enjoyable for me. I am now even more interested in human geography and current events than I ever have been.

The communications with other students were fun and interactive. I enjoyed having meaningful conversations about geography and politics. I learned new things and saw other points of view.

In conclusion, I would recommend this class to anyone who enjoys current events, geography, religion, language, or other things. I would note that many of the books are pretty liberal, but Dr. Gillespie is not a radically liberal professor trying to enforce views, but she is only trying to give the other students and I the most educational resources to help us do well on the exam. If you are the kind of student who needs live interaction in a class, this is not the class for you, as I still do not know how Dr. Gillespie's voice sounds like. I originally did not like this, but she really knows this AP exam and she prepared me well despite no instructional video. I would recommend this class as a good first AP class for freshman, as I learned how to prepare and study for an AP exam, and then how to take it. You will really learn a lot and not regret taking this class!


posted by Caleb Lyda on May 20 2016 at 20:11:42

This course prepared me very well for the exam. The advice Dr. Gillespie gave me was extremely helpful. For me, it took around 6-8 hours/week, depending on the week. The Kuby activities were really helpful, because they helped me understand concepts by analyzing real-world examples. This course was very interesting. A couple topics were boring, but overall I enjoyed the course. It was cool to be in a class and connect with students with around the country - and even the world! 

It order to do well in this course, you should be willing to work diligently. Obviously, the more time you put in to it, the better you will do. It would reccomend this course to anyone who likes to learn about history, cultures, politics, economics, and geography. This course touches the surface of all of those. I'm glad I took this online class. 


Class Review posted by Jerry Hudspeth on May 20 2016 at 17:17:28

I felt like the course adaquately prepared me for the AP exam. I spend around 2.5 hours a week on the course. I don't believe any of the assignments were memorable enough for me to have a favorite assignment. The course did nothing to encrease my intrest in the subject of geography or human geography. I occasionally found my communications with fellow students to be interesting but almost never valuable. Almost any student could do well in this class, provided they can successfully turn in assignments on time. I probably wouldn't advise this course to other students as I am going to a public highschool next year and I doubt any public schoolers would be interested in taking a homeschool class.


Great Overall Class! posted by Charles Hunt on May 19 2016 at 20:52:35

Yes. This being my first AP course, come exam day I was particulary nervous. However, Dr.Gillispe had prepared me extremly well.

 

About two hours per week day and about a half hour on the weekends. 

 

My favriote assignment has to be the mapping of my neighborhood. Coming early in the the class this pleasurably curious assignment sets the tone for what the class expectations are and sets the tone for later class activities.

 

Commenceing this AP class I had little to none sepcifical geography preperation. By the end of the school year I was delightfully surprised to find myself genuinely intrigued with the subject. 

 

Of course! The many posts on the WWW Bord as well as the vast amounts of video and book reviews with my fellow class mates helped tremendously in the preperation for the exam.

For me this was a great first time AP course with a marvelous teacher to help you transition through the course. For the most part the workload was never overloading but definitely not light either. If you are able to manage your work time then this course should be a excellent choice. 

 

My only little whine is the structure of the reviewing process. For a student that might tend to procrastinate with thier school work it might be a little difficult because of the lack of instruction in this particular aspect. However, this is by no means a big problem and I would definitely recommend this class to any student!

 

 

 


My Class Review posted by Olivia Wagner on May 19 2016 at 16:50:46

I feel that the class did a pretty good job preparing me for the exam. There were some things on the exam that I wasn’t sure about or that I had to make an educated guess about, but for the most part I feel the class helped me be ready for the exam. 

I put about an average of 5 hours a week during the majority of the school year and about 8-9 hours per week for 3 weeks leading up to the exam. 

I found the activities and assignment dealing with geographical culture the most interesting and valuable.

Not really. I found the information that I learned in this class very interesting, but I don’t really have any interest to look for further knowledge in this subject. 

Yes. I found the points and questions that the other students had to be interesting and valuable. Also, the studying tips they had really helped me at the end of the school year leading up to the exam.

I would recommend this class to anyone who is passionate in history and/or geography.


Class Review posted by Michael Collins on May 18 2016 at 18:06:53

AP Human Geography has, perhaps, been the most interesting class which I have taken this school year. I'm very interested in politics, geography, and economics, so I enjoyed the material presented. I feel that it prepared me very well for the FRQs on the exam. I did not feel nearly so prepared for the multiple choice portion of the exam, but that is largely to to the vast quantities of random facts necessary. I studied independently with study books and flashcards, so I feel that my lack of preparedness reflects more on the difficulty of the exam than the level of preparation provided in the class. I certainly found the assigned videos extremely helpful; I recognized at least as many facts on the exam from the videos as from the textbooks.

The primary instruction in this course come from the textbooks, so if students are not accustomed to teaching themselves, especially from college level textbooks, they may struggle, and I personally would have preferred a format which involved more teacher instruction. The class was generally informative, however, and I feel that I did reasonably well on the exam, so I am pleased with the results.


Dr. Gillespie's AP Human Geography posted by Grace on May 18 2016 at 13:33:42

This was my first AP class, and I had a very pleasant and fun experience. I believe the course prepared me well for the exam. I was, of course, nervous going into the exam room but felt confident that I was prepared once I started answering questions. I generally put in 3-4 hours a week, possibly more. I found the videos and video reviews to be the most helpful and fun. They gave real life examples and solidified what we were learning. Also, we were able to communicate with the other students a lot, which I found very helpful. We could post fun maps or articles to discuss or ask questions about assignments and topics that we were confused on; my classmates were always willing to help. I would definitely recommend this course to other students! I had a great year and learned so much, Dr. Gillespie is a great teacher. :)


AP Human Geography with Dr. Gillespie posted by Angelia P. on May 17 2016 at 16:47:07

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?


I did feel prepared for the AP exam. Originally I was concerned that I wouldn't be prepared for the exam, mostly because I felt that there was so much information and that I wasn't understanding all of it completely. However, when I started taking practice tests in the last few weeks before the exam, I was pleasantly surprised in the knowledge that I had understood. During the actual exam, I did mostly feel prepared for the exam. There were a few terms that I wasn't familiar with, but I was overall comfortable with the material. 

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into this course?


Generally, I put about 6 hours a week into the course. Most of this time was spent on reading from the textbooks.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?


Yes! I thought that the student interaction was one of the best aspects of this course. The Web Board was updated regularly due to the incentive of Class participation points, which made it a fun and informative resource. During the first half of the year, posts centered on more obscure 'trivia' type maps, but as we got closer to the exam, the web board was a great place to share resources and ask questions. Other students were very helpful in explaining things, posting encouraging messages, and sharing studying resources. 

Overall, I enjoyed this course and the introduction to a fascinating area of study that I never would have learned about otherwise. Thank you to Dr. Gillespie and all of the other students for making my experience so positive!


posted by Michael Engels on May 17 2016 at 14:45:54

     I found this class to be both entertaining and informative. I would reccomend it to anybody who is willing to work hard and put a lot of time into learning the many spects of this class. Dr. Gillespie encourages us to study and learn from other students in this class.


APHG class review posted by Daniel Cahill on May 17 2016 at 14:18:55

I personally found this class very interesting and I would take it again in a heartbeat. I have no complaints but I would personally have liked to have more test, and WWW board I found very interesting and lots of times very helpful but there was also a lot of spam to put it that just weren’t relevant to what we were learning but other than that the class was excellent and I would absolutely recommend it to other students.       


APHG Class Review posted by Luke Cahill on May 17 2016 at 13:54:19

I feel like I was well prepared the AP exam after spending probubly 4-5  hours a each week on the class material. My favorate assignments were the videows that we had to watch everyweek. I think that the class did absolutly spark an interest on the subject of human geography. I didnt find that posting on WWW board helped me learn the matieral beause it seemed as if many students would post random links or stories that were not related to what we learning just so that they could recieve particitpation points. I belive that most stuents can succeed in the class even if they are not to motivated, because I thought that we were given enough work each week to learn the material, but at the same time we were not over loaded with work. I would absolutely recommend the class to other students, of all five ap classes I have taken this was definelty my favorate. I think that Dr. Gillespie is a great teacher who knows how to teach the students the material, but the only suggestion i have is that i wish we had a midterm test in order to solidify in our minds what we leraned in thefirst half of the year.

Luke Cahill 


APHG - Dr. Carol Ann Gillespie posted by Andrew Fisher on May 17 2016 at 11:32:45

This was my first AP class I had ever taken. I felt pretty prepared for the AP exam after spending anywhere from 4-7 hours a week either studying the material or completing the assignments due that week.

One of the longer videos we had to watch, which talked about Walmart, was really interesting. There were some topics and outside-the-house projects I did were intriguing, such as actually studying my neighborhood/community with a geographer's point of view. I had never done that before.   

I can't say that I was instilled with any long-lasting interest in the field of APHG, or that there was a possibility of the field becoming a potential career-choice (I was already interested in a couple things that geography never "overthrew" on my list of career-choices).

With the class's WWW board, any student was enabled to talk with, study with, or ask questions about a topic with anyone else. I'm not one who tends to engage in small talk about what we're learning, and I didn't spend an enormous amount of time looking for maps or charts to share with the class, so I didn't use it particularly often. But if I chose to use it more than I did, then it would've been great for getting other people's opinions about the subject at hand.

A student who has the ability to teach and memorize for himself/herself is probably the best type of student to take this class. Dr. Gillespie does not explicitly tell you what you are learning and then explains it at the beginning of the week; instead, the student is the one who reads the allotted text for the week, and takes the time to learn it themselves. Even though I struggled with remembering some of the models and definitions, I felt pretty prepared when it came time to take the exam.

Recap: Although I didn't have  a substantial interest in geography, and it was my first AP class, I did learn a lot and I was introduced to a field I didn't know much about before. I would recommend this class to anyone who can teach and take the time to learn the material themselves, and not require a lot of supervision just to figure out what's going on.

Thanks for reading the whole review :)


APHG Review posted by Averey Kennedy on May 17 2016 at 03:53:57

1. Yes. While some of the multiple choice questions were nothing like I anticipated, I feel like the class in general certainly prepared me.

2. Approximately 5 hours per week.

3. I enjoyed the Greening Vacant Lots activity - while tedious, it was very informative.

4. Not particularly. I enjoyed the course, and certainly benefited from it, but it did not prompt any further interest in the subject.

5. No. While I did stumble upon some valuable studying tips on the Student Board towards the end of the year, that was really the extent of my interaction with the other students.

6. I would say any student that is a) prepared to invest alot of time and effort or b) skilled at retaining much information is suited for this course. I would definitely recommend it to anyone with an interest in geography!

 


AP Human Geography Class Review posted by Leslie Park on May 17 2016 at 03:40:21

This was my first year of taking an AP Class. I loved my teacher, Ms. Gillespie, and I love the class itself. 

This class did a very good job preparing me for the AP exam because all the books are very helpful, and the assignments helped me understand the concepts more. 

I usually study this course everyday because I would need to read the chapters, do the assignments, and take some quizzes. The assignments make you think at a larger perspective of the geography of the world. My favorite assignments are the Kuby activities from a book. This is because we use different sources to find the answers and looking at different maps to see differences between other years makes it interesting. 

One of the benefits of this class is whenever we have a question, we would post it on the WWW Board for others to see and to help each other out. Even though this is not a syncronous class where it is live, you can still receive all the help from your teachers and classmates. 

This class definetely gave me a bigger interest in the subject mostly because now I know a lot about human geography than I did before. Now, I can discuss about the world with others from a perspective of a geographer. 

I think students who definetely have an interest in human geography itself will do well in this course, any student who is looking for a new subject to learn about, or anyone who is looking for a challenge in studying. 

This course takes a lot of studying, but all the studying pays off when you take the AP Exam. After the exam, you will feel really good about yourself, and you will feel glad you took this course. Overall, this class is a very beneficial class, and I recommend it to everyone!


AP Human Geography 2015-2016 posted by Caris Gross on May 16 2016 at 23:56:43

I took this class as an introduction to AP courses, and I would say it definitely served that purpose. I was definitely challenged throughout the entire year to put forward my best work and not lag behind. As the exam approached, I didn't feel nearly as prepared as I should have been, but this was probably due to not starting to review early enough (I'm a horrible procrastinator). The 2-3 weeks before the exam were pretty ridiculous, but going into the room on exam day I definitely felt ready. Thatnks to Dr. Gillespie's fantastic resources I was able to memorize all (or at least most) of the obscure models and theories that I was worried about (I'm looking at you, Technopoles).

Throughout the year, I averaged about 1 to 2 hours of work each day, but it all depended on the workload for the week. The few weeks leading up to the exam I pretty much ate, breathed, and slept Human Geography with 3 to 5 hours of studying a day, including the weekends.

I really benefited from the assignments that made me put the theories we learned into practical use, like the neighborhood and park activities. It opened my eyes about areas in my community that I had originally thought were dull and boring.

Before I took this course, I was never really that interested in geography, but I would definitely say I am much more interested now.

By far my favorite part of this class was the relationships I made. A few weeks into the class a few of us decided to form a weekly study group, and I really benefited from that. Some weeks we would be extremely productive, getting our assignments done all together and preparing for the exam, but other weeks we would get totally distracted by things we found outrageously entertaining, like milk frothers and fedoras and this card game called Exploding Kittens.

I would recommend this course to any student who is motivated to go beyond the bare minimum and work hard. You have to be able to form your own plan that fits you best and be able to learn on your own.


Trials by vocab and models: appreciating the complexity of AP Human Geography posted by Evan Wright on May 16 2016 at 14:28:45

Going in to the course, I thought this would be a piece of cake.  I had already been taking AP Biology, and thought I had seen everything.  Wrong.  Just like AP Biology, this course asks you to be interested and focused in what it is teaching you, and I'm very glad I did pay attention.  This turned into one of my favorite classes while also being one of my most challenging.  I did not feel very prepared as the AP test crept up, so I studied like crazy.  Human geography models and theories also worried me, but due to the guidance of Dr. Gillespie, who gave us activities pertaining to important models, I felt prepared by test day. 

I put about 1 to 2 hours of work in to this course per day depending on the schedule for the week, but that was with me working at my own pace, and trying to get the best score I could.  The two weeks leading up to the exam, I spent 3 to 5 hours a day studying.

I liked doing the assignments that took me outside exploring.  Not only did it help me get to know my own area more intimitely, it also helped me look at it from a geographer's perspective, which was very valuable to me.  

This course definitely made me more interested in geography.  I had already been interested in different cultures and history, but this helped me explain things on a spatial level, which was quite interesting. 

It was really nice connecting with the other students in my class.  Almost everyone lived very different lives in comepletely different locations, and it was very interesting seeing how our own life experiences translated into how we interpreted certain activities throughout the course.  This was most evident after a couple of students, myself included, started a weekly study group to help work on assignments each week. 

This course is not made for someone who is used to just doing exactly what they are told to do and nothing else.  You have to be self-dependent and very motivated in order to take this course.  It requires you to work hard and be disiplined in your studies.  If you fit that description, you will be fine.

 


The Class and exam posted by Jessica on May 13 2016 at 21:44:40

Personally I think this class was great! I am a competitive debater and the things I learned were extremely helpful to me for both economic, poitical, cultural, and social debates. I enjoyed the assignments and the field activities, and just the general knowledge I recieved and found useful in normal conversations really allowed me to explore so many other fields and see so many new connections between subjects!

I did feel pretty well prepared for my exam, and I generally put in about 3 hours per week due to my hectic schedule.

I would definitely reccomend this class to anyone with a curiosity about politics, culture, economics, or physical geography. Or even if you just want a fun class to help you understand another field, this would be very beneficial. I enjoyed the course and it was a great first AP class for me!


Review of AP Human Geography posted by Virginia Hudspeth on May 13 2016 at 17:59:22

I was prepared for the AP Human Geography exam. I spent anywhere from 1-5 hours a week on this class depending on the assignments that week.I liked the weekly videos and video reviews. This course enhanced my interest in urban geography. I liked reading the posts other students put on the WWW board. A student will do well in this course as long as they take initiative on his or her own. I would recommend this course to very motivated students and those who really enjoy human geography. 


AP Human Geography Class Review 2015 posted by Jaya Alagar on June 13 2015 at 13:32:07

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes, I felt that this well organized course prepared me for the exam very well!  Come exam day, I was confident in my answers, thanks to the readiness of this class.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

Usually, I put in 7-9 hours a week on this course.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

I found the Lincoln Institute of Design's density game very great-- it taught principles in a fun and oragnized, (albeit frustrating at times) game!

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

This course not only enhanced my interest in human georgaphy, but because it had such a multi-varied facade, it also peaked my interest in economics, politics, demography, and psychology.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

I found the online WWW board, which was used to connect with students throughout the year, extremely value to answer any of my questons that I had been "stumped" on or was just curious about the answer.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

A student that would excel in this course is one that is hard-working, passionate about the subject, and strives to keep up with assignments as laid out in the syllabus.  The one piece of advice that I would give students contemplating this course is to realize the real-life applications this subject truly has-- AP human geography, is more that meets the eye-- it's not just geography (stereotypical memorization of place names), butan amalgam of economics, geography, social sciences, and humanities all wound up into a sole course.  

 


Loved this class! posted by Anna Casal on May 26 2015 at 12:04:23

I think this class has really helped me to better understand the world and how humans play a role in shaping the environment and vise versa :). I really enjoyed this class (even though it could be a bit difficult at times ;) ), and I really liked sharing things with my classmates on the WWWBoard, and seeing what they said!! I now know so much more, and it's fun getting to hear things on the news and being able to relate it to geographical concepts and models! I've actually impressed my mom ;D! My favorite part of the class were probably the field trips--doing the one to the local park was the best! I also found I like cultural geography the best, and also like studying urban geography, since I can see the affects of suburbanization every time I step outside! 

I think students who are good at self-study and are diligent would do well with this course; there is alot of reading involved, and the assignments can be a bit long, so keeping up with the work will take some effort :). The reading would normally take me about 30-45 minutes per day (I split it up so it wouldn't be too much in one day), then I'd work on other assignments and studying the vocabulary, which would take another 30 minutes or so. I get overwhelmed easily, so making sure I focused on one portion a day really helped to minimize the feeling of "this is too much!" and also helped me to take my time and really get into what I was reading about! 

Overall, I think this class was a GREAT learning experience and is very worth taking; the textbooks are very interesting, but may take some getting used to at first, since they are pretty long and detailed, but that's partly why they're so interesting! The explanations are very thorough, and there are plenty of pics and graphs and maps to look at :). I especially liked the articles in the red boxes in the Fellman text ;). 


AP Human Geography posted by Evelyn on May 25 2015 at 01:05:29

Yes. There were some questions that caught me off guard, but the course prepared me well and the practices helped me become more comfortable  with takling unfamiliar questions

Usually around 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours per day. In the weeks leading up to the test, I put in about 3-4 hours on the days I wasn't at work.

I feel like I learned a lot from the Human Geography in Action book. It was not as in-depth as the other book, but I really loved all the assignments. I feel like I learned the most from the assignments on religious segregation in Northern Ireland and the dissolution of former Yugoslavia. I really enjoyed both!

Absolutely! I wish I'd had more time to spend on the material, since everything was very interesting. I wish I had taken this class several years ago, as it really would have helped me in some of my other classes.

Yes, it was interesting to be able to share information, study tools, and discuss various areas of human geography. It's not the same as being in a classroom, of course, but it was certainly helpful. I'm glad we were able to communicate!

I would absolutely recommend this course to other students. This class certainly requires students do the work and study, but it is worth the effort. Human geography has changed my understanding of the world, and I feel far more knowledgeable. This class is really worth the work!


AP Human Geography posted by Indra Alagar on May 20 2015 at 24:44:35

Yes, I felt the course prepared me for the AP Human Geography Exam.  Although some of the assignments were tedious and long at times, such as the Fellmann reading and Kuby activities, the course really instilled into me essential concepts.    

I usually put around an hour of work each day into this course.  As the exam date got closer, this time commitment increased to about 2 hours per day.  This is because I spent more time studying and reinforcing key concepts and older material that I may have forgotten from the beginning of the year.  I found it especially helpful to practice writing FRQs and doing multiple choice questions similar to those that appeared on the actual AP exam.  

I particularly enjoyed the "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" activity in the Kuby workbook because it dealt with a real-life example of central place theory.  Additionally, reading Fellmann C9- titled "Livelihood and Economy: From Blue Collar to Gold Collar" proved to be an especially important assignment, as it covered some of the more challenging concepts that likely could not be grasped without this type of foundational understanding.

Although I already had an interest in geography before taking this course, AP Human Geography enhanced my interest further.  Not only did it cover geography, but it also incorporated other subjects such as politics, economics, and history into the course material.  My knowledge of these fields has expanded greatly after taking this course.  

Yes, the WWW board was a neat way to have other students answer any questions I had about assignments or the syllabus, provide feedback on my geography tidbits, and share fascinating geographical facts and articles from around the web.

Any students who is hard-working, self-motivated, and has an interest in geography would do well in this course.  I strongly encourage other students to take this class!  Although challenging at times, this course was a fun, unique experience.  


Review of AP Human Geography posted by Jonathan Webster on May 20 2015 at 18:36:09

This class was my first AP course, and I enjoyed it.  Dr. Gillespie is an excellent teacher. I probably put in about 6 hours a week for this class.  I especially enjoyed the field trip to a local park and the census tract assignments.  The Kuby exercises were sometimes challenging, but I thought most of them were interesting.  I enjoyed reading the entries by other students, and I found their comments helpful in many cases.  I would definitely recommend this course to other students.  Anyone who is willing to work hard and wants to learn will do well in this class.


My Experience in APHG posted by Chloe Lindahl on May 18 2015 at 21:54:59

This course was really fascinating, and the teacher is fantastic! I definitely feel that the course prepared me for the exam, and the teacher has even written a review book for APHG! I studied an average of 6 hours per week. Being able to communicate with other students on the website was very helpful and fun. At first, I was nervous about not being able to communicate with the teacher face to face, but Dr. Gillespie is VERY accomodating, helpful, and active on the website. I would recommend this course to students who are willing to work hard, put in the work necessary, and learn more about how humans affect the environment.


AP Human Geography Class Review 2015 posted by Ryan Shearer on May 18 2015 at 13:41:24

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

I feel the course did a pretty good job preparing me for the AP exam. 

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

I put an hour or two a day into the class. This was usually enought to get all the assignments done each week. Sometimes this involved weekend work, especially when a field assignment was due.  

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

As an incoming Geographic Information Science major this fall. I really enjoyed the GIS type stuff that we did where we had to make conclusions about different maps with different filters enabled. 

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Since I was already intending to major in a geospatial field when I enrolled in this class, my interest can only be enhanced so much. That said, this class confirmed my interest in Geography as a major and hopefullly a career. 

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

I thought my communications with the other students were very valuble. People were able help each other with technical difficulties and also help clear up any confusion with the syllabus. 

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

Any student that is willing to work hard and has an interest in geography or any other social science will do fine. Maps are used everywhere with all sorts of subject matter and learning about them will be useful to you. 


Interesting Class and Great Teacher! posted by Andrew Joyner on May 18 2015 at 10:43:08

I really enjoyed taking AP Human Geography with Dr. Gillespie. I felt very prepared for the AP exam and the Free Response Questions we practiced helped tremendously. On average, I had to work about four or five hours a week on this class, generally about an hour a day. I really enjoyed the projects we did in the first semester that applied some of what we were learning to real life. Even though we never had a class time, I felt like the system used for communication worked very well. Communication with other students and with Dr. Gillespie went smoothly and someone was always there to answer my questions. I would most definitely recommend this course to anyone who is looking for a fascinating and applicable AP course!


AP Human Geography with Dr. Gillespie posted by Nina Blois on May 15 2015 at 19:45:15

This was my first AP class, and I think this course did a great job with instilling the core concepts of human geography, which was great come exam time. Also, the practice exams and practice FRQ's we took before the real exam really helped build my test taking confidence.

I generally worked an average of 5-7 hours a week, depending on the assignment and how much I was preparing for the exam.

My favorite assignments were the field studies that enabled us to go out in our neighborhoods and cities and explore all of the concepts we had been learning about in a real-world situation.

Before I took this course, I would have never considered geography to be a subject I would be interested in, but that has changed after this year and all the new things I have learned.

I found it extremely helpful to be able to connect with other students. From reading the interesting geography articles they posted, to asking a question about a typo on an assignment that had been confusing me, it really felt like a social classroom environment.

I would definitely reccommend this course, because it is a base for almost any branch of geographical study. Even if you are interested in economics, politics, or something else that seems a lot different from geography, you will be surprised to find that this class is a base for that as well. To succeed in this class, you will need motivation and a good work ethic.

Overall, I had a great year with APHG!


Human Geo Course review posted by Maitreyee Gehlot on May 15 2015 at 12:11:55

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam? Yes. This course was intensive and very detailed it helped me prepare for the exam very nicely.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course? Initially 3-4 hours and then approximately 5-6 hours a week.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject? Yes. AP Human Geo basically covers a lot of aspects of social science like economics, politics, geography, history...

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)? I would recommend this course to anybody interested in topics related to social science such as humanites, anthropology... or basically anybody who wants to learn more about how different countries and regions function or how our economy works or about the world in general. 

 

 

 


AP Human Geography Course Review 2014 posted by Swata Alagar on May 21 2014 at 19:33:35

Yes the course prepared me for the exam.  I thought that the sample FRQs and the feedback from Dr. Gillespie really helped on the FRQ section of the exam.  I also thought that a lot of the material in the textbooks was a bit more in depth than really needed for the exam, but of course it is always better to be overprepared.

Generally, I put about 1.5 hours per day, so about 9-10 hours per week.  I did about 12-14 hours per week for the last month leading up to the exam.

One of my favorite assignments was "Tracking the AIDS epidemic" which showed how geography, human behavior, and medicine are all interrelated.  I also liked learning about population and watching the video called "Population Transition in Italy." Both assignments were fascinating and demonstrated how human geography is applicable to the real world.

I had an interest in geography before taking this course, but the course enriched my interest in geography.  The course also made me more interested in economics and history as well.  I really liked that this course covered a broad range of topics, so that anyone could find something they were interested in.

The WWW Board was useful in that students could post articles or websites they found useful. It was nice that you could read other students' opinions about certain ideas.

A student willing to work hard independently would do well in this course.  Since there is no live class time, you must do all the reading (which was especially long and hard in the Fellmann book) by yourself and really strive to understand all the concepts.  I would recommend this course to other students, although I would say to get a good review book (or two!) to focus on answering the multiple choice questions.  The class focuses on writing essays and FRQs. Although there are multiple choice quizzes based on the textbook, they aren't real AP-style questions.  Also, students should work hard at the beginning of the year to learn important vocab and concepts from the Fellmann book.  Otherwise, you will find yourself cramming all the vocab words in at the last minute. 

 


AP Human Geography 2014 posted by Steven Elliott on May 13 2014 at 23:45:41

I had an interest in geography before taking this class, but this class greatly expanded it! I would highly recommend this class to anyone who is interested not only in human geography, but also in the general humanities as well; certain topics from humanities such as history and economics play an important role in this course.

 

Dr. Gillespie’s class activities are interesting and enjoyable, and they allowed me to see my neighborhood in an entirely new way. For example, in one activity, I went to a local supermarket and used my geographical knowledge of agriculture and economics to predict why certain products were imported while others were produced domestically. By doing this activity, I could apply what I learned from the class to an everyday situation.

 

In addition, this class prepared me very well for the AP exam. Dr. Gillespie had me take a practice exam for the multiple choice section of the AP, and she also had me write several free-response questions, with helpful feedback for my answers to the questions being returned promptly. I felt confident about the material when I took the exam.

 

Even after this course, I’ll still be looking at the world around us from a geographical perspective. Overall, this was a highly enriching course with an excellent teacher!


AP Human Geography with Dr. Gillespie--An Absolute MUST TAKE! posted by Sarah Moy de Vitry on May 24 2013 at 16:41:40

I didn't start out taking this course because I loved the subject. I took it because an older brother of mine had taken it and I was motivated by 'competition'. I now officially love Human Geography. If you want to feel prepared for the exam at the end of the year, take this course and learn stuff you never would have dreamed of! Dr. Gillespie has given me confidence in myself and thanks to the interactive social board, I have made friends that will last. I hope anyone who is considering taking this course should stop just considering and take it! 

Excellent, excellent, excellent! Need I say more?

I probably put in 2+ hours during the first semester and about 3+ during the end of the year...

I especially enjoyed the field assignments because they took everything we had been studying and put it in practice under our very eyes. Concepts such as a 'sense of place' were competely vague to me before I now I can use them with confidence.

Yes, definitely! I now try to look at the world through the eyes of an (amateur) geographer!


AP Human Geography with Dr. G posted by Robert Goldin on May 23 2013 at 14:38:18

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

I felt this course prepared me extremely well for the AP exam.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

I generally worked for about 1-2 hours per day.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

I found the two real-world activities to be very helpful in visualizing the concepts and models we were learning about.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes, to the point that I am now considering majoring in Geography in college.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

The communications with other students helped to create a learning environment that was somewhat similar to that of a conventional school setting.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

Any student who is eager to learn and willing to work hard to complete all the work on time will do well in this course. I would definitely recommend this course to all other home school students who are considering it.


AP Human Geography Class Review- 2013 posted by Katherine Fisher on May 22 2013 at 19:33:50

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes, definitely. There was nothing on the exam that I hadn't studied. 

 

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

On average, I put in around two hours a day, which came to about 10 hours a week.

 

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

MY favorite assignments were the online ones that went along with the Kuby textbook, because they very often incorporated interactive maps and tables. I also enjoyed the 'field work' assignments that asked us to make observations on our community.

 

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes, definitely! Previous to taking this course I didn't even know what human geography was, and this class really opened my eyes to the 'workings of the world'. I am now very interested in almost all the topics that were discussed.

 

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?


Yes, I did. I think discussions at the beginning of the year were far more interesting and well thought out, but those near the end were informative as well.

 

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

I would recommend this course only to the student who is willing to work hard. The two textbooks differ greatly: Fellmann is very dense, wordy, and difficult to get through (for me, at least), and Kuby is concise and clear. Unfortunately, the most work we had to do was in Fellmann. I found the workload to be rather difficult to keep up with all the other subjects and activities I had going, but I learned so much that I think the late-night study sessions were worth it. 

  The only negative thing I can say is that work was not very evenly distributed over the weeks, and (because everything was due exactly one week after it was written on the syllabus) I was often hard pressed to get all the work done. For example, one week we would have to read two chapters, one in Fellman and one in Kuby, answer all questions for both the chapters, and do vocabulary for both. Then the next week, we would have to write one paper and watch an hour-long video. I wish the work had been a bit more evenly ‘dense’.

 All in all, this was a fantastic course and I felt very prepared for the AP exam.


AP Human Geography Class Review posted by Mason Janenda on May 21 2013 at 13:55:37

 

-      Yes. I felt very prepared for the AP exam. I knew the vast majority of the terms used in my test prep books. I was worried at first about the FRQ’s but after practicing them (quite a bit), I felt prepared and hope I did well! Dr. Gillespie’s test prep book was particularly useful in creating a study plan.

 

 

      - I put about 6-8 hours a week into the course on a normal week. It was challenging, but I was careful to keep up so I never felt overwhelmed. As I got closer to the exam and some of my other classes ended, I worked up to 18 hours a week studying for the exam (most of my other classes had ended and I had the time ;).

       

 

      - I enjoyed the fieldwork, when we had to go to a park, or aerially view our neighborhood. I enjoyed viewing those places from a human geography perspective. My final partner project was about Mormonism and ended up to be my favorite. I got to do first hand field research, travel, and interview Mormons in Salt Lake City at the Mormon Tabernacle. This experience made the study of religion much more real and fascinating to me.

       

 

- Yes. It also enhanced my understanding of other subjects, like geography, history, social studies, current events, and even literature. I find myself making all kinds of connections between many different subjects (see above) that I never would have been able to do before.

 

 

- I did. I read the WWW board and posted often. Students could share information that we gained through studies and just life in general. Some of my favorite posts were when people posted about their interests, hobbies, or concerns. I learned a lot about my classmates and shared some of my interests. I definitely benefitted from it. It was a great way to feel connected to my classmates. Towards the end of class, several of my classmates posted study aids that I personally benefitted from quite a bit.

 

 

- I think the student who would most benefit from this class is one who has an interest in the world in general. This class forces students to think about how humans affect the world historically through the present day. I think a lot of courses teach one subject. This class helps student make connections between many of those subjects and understand world trends. I think a student who has an interest in broadening his or her view of the world and is willing to put in at lease 6-8 hours of hard work (more than I expected!) into this subject would enjoy it. I would recommend this course to a hard working, bright, and curious person.

 

 


Dr. Gillespie's Human Geography Class! posted by Natalie Hamada on May 20 2013 at 20:04:04

-Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

I do feel that the course prepared me pretty well.  There were some questions on the exam that I still stuggled with; however, I feel that was mainly from my weak foundation in history and geography, as history and geography unsurprisingly come up a LOT in human geography. (The problem for me was that I was always a science and math oriented kid!).  If you already have good knowledge of history and geography, I have no doubt that this class will prepare you quite well!

-How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?


It depended on the assignments for that week; if a Fellmann chapter had been assigned for that week, I usually spent about 3 hours a day on homework.  On lighter homework weeks, I spent about an hour or less per day.  When I started to add studying for the AP exam, that was probably an extra 4-5 hours per week.

-Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?


I thought that the videos we were assigned to watch each week provided a great way to see applications of what we were learning in real life!

-Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?


While I'm still planning to pursue a career in science, I think I can say, yes, this course did enhance my interest!  It is quite cool to be able to read the news and apply my human geography knowledge to think about it!

-Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?


Yes, communicating with the other students via the WWWBoard was quite helpful and interesting!  It encouraged me to keep up with my own homework, and it was nice to get their opinion on something if I had a question.  Also, we would share interesting articles with each other or helpful review sites!

 

-What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

 A student who is self-motivated.  Since this is an online class, Dr. Gillespie cannot come and bug you to finish your homework or study!  You must do it yourself, and have a want to do well in this class and learn!  Also, this class requires you to think, think, think and make connections!  Being able to apply the models and theories you learn in this class to situations in real life is necessary.

 

Overall, YES, I highly recommend this class!  It has taught me EXTREMELY useful information that has permanently changed the way I look at the world and think about current events.

 


AP Human Geography Review posted by Olivia Fish on May 20 2013 at 17:03:31

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?


Usually when we had to read a chapter from Fellman, I would spend about an hour a day, but then I would work alot on homework over the weekend too.  When I was studying for the exam though, I probably spent 1-2 hours per day studying.  Overall I would say I probably spent no more than two hours a day on this course.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?


I really liked the activities at the end of the Kuby chapters.  They definetly really helped me to understand the material in the chapter.  Also, I really enjoyed writing the essays and doing the projects like the sense of my place project and the field trip to the local park.  

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?


I really enjoyed being able to communicate with other students on the WWW Board.  Most of the other students in my class shared lots of interesting articles and websites that were really helpful.  Especially close to the exam, it was really nice to be able to share review ideas and websites.  

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?


I would definetly recommend this course to other students! I really enjoyed it.  I learned alot and Dr. Gillespie was a great teacher!!!  

 


Ap Human Geography posted by Jacob Kennelly on May 17 2013 at 15:01:14

Dr Gillespie had me feeling completely confident from the beginning of the course all the way to the end of the exam! I felt very well prepared walking into and out of the exam room!

I put about 2-4 hours a day into this course depending on the workload, again I feel as though this was a good amount each day to get me prepared for the exam.

I liked the online class interaction on the social board and found many of the online videos to be very helpful when trying to provide examples on the FRQ section on the exam.

While I don't think I'm going to major in Geography, this class did help open my eyes to the world and how people spatially and culturally interact with one another so I would definitely say that this class did enhance my interests!

I did find my communications with other students very valuable and interesting! I am going to miss the online social board!

"What sort of student would do well in this class?" I would say someone who is willing to commit much of their school year to this class and is willing to expand their mind! It is a very broad topic so you must be knowledgeable of not only current events happening in the news but also historical events along with technological innovations and scientific and agricultural revolutions. Also, you must be good at geography in general! 

 

Again, great class!!


Take the Class and Learn Something New posted by John Baert on July 10 2012 at 24:13:34

Yes, Dr. Gillespie promised that her workload would adequately prepare me for the AP Exam. On exam day, I felt entirely prepared and ready. Dr. Gillespie gives plenty of review work and quizzes that give an updated and well thought-out review plan.

On average I put in between 10-12 hours a week (I’m a day dreamer). This class is very manageable, if you are consistent in your work. If you save it all for last minute you may find yourself walking around your local park trying to answer field study questions, or trying to compile all your county’s census data in order to answer activity questions on the day all your assignments are due. If you organize your time and workload appropriately, it will be that much easier to stay on top of the assignments.

The most helpful assignments were the weekly ones. Their consistency helped me develop a learning groove the made it very easy to keep track of the information I was learning. Case studies assigned are lots of fun and gave me a chance to apply the methods and geography terms I was being taught. The vocabulary is very new in human geography and many can’t be found in the dictionary. Dr. Gillespie’s weekly vocabulary list helped me learn the Human Geography jargon.

Absolutely, this course exposed a range of topics I had never heard of. You will observe population, topography, GIS, mapping, and economy in an entirely different light. You should find yourself fascinated with the methods used to keep track of our current world.

Communicating with other students definitely helps encourage your studies. However, this was part of the course should be stressed more than it was when I took it. When you make an effort to talk about what you’ve learned, it forces you to make yourself clear when using some very uncommon terms. It is also helpful to hear other students’ opinion a views of the matter and will inspire you to work harder in your own studies. Communication is key and students should try to make the biggest effort they can to share their views with other kids.

The student must be willing to work hard, efficiently, consistently, and willingly. They must try to keep in touch with the teacher whenever they need to. They have to be responsible enough to sometimes take a guess and learn later whether they are right or wrong. A good student will want to constantly evaluate him/her self and make sure that they are processing the material. I recommend the class as a good way to get exposed to many modern methods used by governments and people around the world.


AP Human Geography: Take it! posted by Alexander Deatrick on May 30 2012 at 17:06:15

Before I answer the questions, I'd like to say that not only was this class very fun, but it also should not be taken too lightly. This class isn't the sort where an A+ essay consists of facts with a conclusion at the end. Both on the FRQ section of the exam, and during the weekly Fellmann Review book questions, you will have to think. You will have to make logical connections between facts. By the end of the year, though, you will know how to think.
Q1. Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?
A1. Absolutely. The course prepared me excellently, but be prepared to do extensive review of all the material, preferably with a few targeted review books, such Dr. Gillespie's excellent book: 5 Steps to a 5: AP Human Geography.
Q2. How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?
A2. An average of about an 10 hours a week, most of which I put in on the weekend. Some weeks, the assignment list will be short but will consist of a several page essay, while other times it will consist of multiple smaller assignments.
Q3. Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?
A3. The Fellmann Review questions. 6-12 problems, 13 times over the year (there are 13 chapters in the Fellmann book). Each question, if answered well and accurately, should take you about 30 minutes. These prepared me excellently for the FRQ section of the exam.
Q4. Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?
A4. Yes, yes, and yes. I'm now very interested not only in geography, but in a broad range of social sciences that I was uninterested in before.
Q5. Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?
A5. The WWW board is a great place to ask or answer questions, discuss the topics covered during the week, and more. Class participation is a small percentage of your final class grade, so make sure to be active!
Q6. What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?
A6. A student interested in more than a score on the AP exam would be best suited to this course. Of course, the AP score matters, and it's what colleges pay attention to (for good reason!), but make sure you're looking for more than just that. Most hard working high schoolers who self-study this course for 2 months before the exam could get a 3 or maybe even a 4, but will come out not knowing how to apply this treasure chest of new knowledge to what they see and hear around them. If you have a good work ethic, and are looking to learn how to think, then take this course. You will learn so much.
-Alexander Deatrick


AP Human Geography Review posted by Abigail Hering on May 28 2012 at 22:08:40

I would recommend AP Human Geography to anyone who is interested in the world. This class was fascinating! Dr. Gillespie was an awesome teacher, and always answered everyone's questions quickly and thoroughly.

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes. At the end of the class, I felt prepared for the exam, but would recommend getting a review book. I got the Princeton Review and the 5 Steps to a 5 review books, which both really helped by providing practice tests and review schedules. The 5 Steps to a 5 book, which was written by Dr. Gillespie :), was especially helpful.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

It varied a lot, depending on the chapter or week. Some days I spent 30 min, and some were up to 5 hrs. The average was about 2 hours a day.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

The end of each Fellmann textbook chapter had "For Review" questions, which really helped with reviewing the entire chapter with writing FRQs on the AP exam. The Kuby textbook had activities at the end of each chapter that helped with providing examples on the exam. Dr. Gillespie had extra projects, essays, and vocabulary assignments which were also very helpful and interesting. My favorite was the “Sense of Place Fieldtrip”.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes. Before the class, I wasn't completely sure what human geography was, but now it is one of my favorite subjects, and has enhanced my interest in geography and the world. Now current events are more relevant and meaningful.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

Yes. Everyone posted their questions on the WWWBoard, and were usually answered within 24 hours by other students or Dr. Gillespie. Some people posted websites or articles that helped with understanding particular concepts.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

Yes, I would recommend this class to students if they are willing to work hard. If you are willing to dedicate time, this class is extremely interesting and worth the work.   


AP Human Geography Review posted by Abigail Hering on May 28 2012 at 22:06:18


AP Human Geography Review posted by Abigail Hering on May 28 2012 at 22:04:24

I would recommend AP Human Geography to anyone who is interested in the world. This class was fascinating! Dr. Gillespie was an awesome teacher, and always answered everyone's questions quickly and thoroughly.

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes. At the end of the class, I felt prepared for the exam, but would recommend getting a review book. I got the Princeton Review and the 5 Steps to a 5 review books, which both really helped by providing practice tests and review schedules. The 5 Steps to a 5 book, which was written by Dr. Gillespie :), was especially helpful.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

It varied a lot, depending on the chapter or week. Some days I spent 30 min, and some were up to 5 hrs. The average was about 2 hours a day.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

The end of each Fellmann textbook chapter had "For Review" questions, which really helped with reviewing the entire chapter with writing FRQs on the AP exam. The Kuby textbook had activities at the end of each chapter that helped with providing examples on the exam. Dr. Gillespie had extra projects, essays, and vocabulary assignments which were also very helpful and interesting. My favorite was the “Sense of Place Fieldtrip”.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes. Before the class, I wasn't completely sure what human geography was, but now it is one of my favorite subjects, and has enhanced my interest in geography and the world. Now current events are more relevant and meaningful.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

Yes. Everyone posted their questions on the WWWBoard, and were usually answered within 24 hours by other students or Dr. Gillespie. Some people posted websites or articles that helped with understanding particular concepts.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

Yes, I would recommend this class to students if they are willing to work hard. If you are willing to dedicate time, this class is extremely interesting and worth the work.


AP Human Geography posted by Sarah Caballero on May 28 2012 at 19:00:09

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes!  Elaborating on the end of the chapter questions in the Fellman textbook got me ready for the FRQs.  Also, I was able to gain some backround from the Kuby activities and videos we watched.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

It really depended on the week's work.  Being a rather slow reader, a chapter from Fellman and the questions could occupy about 5-6 hours alone (again, I'm a slow reader;).  Assignments from Kuby were usually shorter, unless they were very in depth (which some were).  So overall, about 10 hours at the most and 5 hours at the least (a short essay and studying). 

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

My favorite assignment was probably the online game to construct an urbanized area.  For most valuable, besides the textbook obviousely (which I wouldn't really consider "favorite":), I found many of the videos helpful, just in drawing examples from and becoming familiar with situations around the world.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes, definitely!  Before this course, I thought geography was shading in the Roman Empire on a blank world map.  So, as you see, I had NO idea what I was in for!  I have a completely different perspective on geography now, and I regularly analyze the world around me and current events from a geographical perspective.  My essays for other subjects have even taken a geographical spin, and I'm using all my new techie vocabulary (much to my mom's annoyance:).

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

I arranged several study groups, over phone, email, and Skype, and they proved very helpful in studying.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

Anyone who's self motivated and willing to put lots of effort into learning new concepts.

As a side note to any prospective/new students: Be sure to keep up with current events in the news, as the exam will call not only on geographical concepts but also on their applications to current events.  Also, when you get the summer reading list, I'd recommend reading as many as you can.  At first, I was wondering what in the world they had to do with geography, but as the class progressed, reading all those books turned out to be one of the most useful things I did:)


posted by Jonathan Sims on May 24 2012 at 14:28:27

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Yes I felt the course prepared me for the test. The fellmen questions were tough but really paid off.

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

I spent an hour to an hour and a half a day working on assignments.

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

The fellmen questions were very similar to FRQ. Which was really helpful. Also the Kuby work was really fun and interesting.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

YES! Before this year I always liked geography and maps, but this course broadened my view a lot.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

The communication was good. The course does not demand a lot of interaction.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)?

I am a freshman this year and it was my first AP class. I would recommend this class to other freshman, but only knowing that they would be willing to work hard. It’s an AP class so it’s going to be hard.

 

Last thing I would like to add is that Mrs. Gillespie was an awesome teacher. If I ever had any questions she would always answer them quickly. Her grading and response to emails was super fast.


AP Human Geography posted by Meredith Pochily on May 29 2011 at 14:37:30

I'll preface this by saying that I very much enjoyed this course. A lot of people seem to use it as a "starter" AP, but it doesn't need to be; I've taken other APs and still got a lot out of this class.

If you're like me last year, you're intrigued by human geography, but not sure just what exactly it is and what you'll spend a year learning about if you sign up for this course. In the course, you'll study the interactions between humans and their environment -- population, political geography, urban geography, agriculture and land use, resources, industry, economic development, and cultural geography: things like population distribution and growth, agricultural land use patterns, colonialism and political organizations, how to measure development, religion and languages, and urban models. 

Ok, on to the questions...

How many hours of work per day or per week did you generally put into the course?

It varied a lot; some days I spent 30 minutes on geography. Other days I spent 2 or 3 hours. The workload was pretty uneven, as some weeks we were assigned a 30 or so page chapter, review questions (usually about 10 short essays), and activities in the Kuby textbook, while other weeks would only require work on one activity. All of the week's work is due on the following Monday, so I often procrastinated and did a lot of the homework over the weekend (which I don't recommend). It's a fair amount of work, but as long as you budget your time and get a system, it's not overwhelming. 

Are there any particularly favorite assignments that you found especially valuable?

I liked the activities in the Kuby workbook. They were a good application of the concepts we learned in the main text and also offered some variation. The practice FRQs were also very helpful as it came closer to exam time.

Did the course enhance your interest in the subject?

Yes. I came into the course with very little previous knowledge of human geography and I really wasn't sure what it was going to be all about. I found that I became more interested in geography as we got further into the year. During the last few months especially, while I was reviewing the whole year, I got a more comprehensive understanding of what we'd been learning. If it's even possible, I really enjoyed studying for the exam.

Did you find your communications with other students to be interesting or valuable?

This isn't the most interactive class I've taken through PA Homeschoolers, but the structure of the course doesn't lend itself to as much interaction and also doesn't require it. There was some communication on the WWWboard; students would post articles pertaining to what we were studying and ask one another questions. We also did one project with a partner during the year which was fun and different from the normal routine.

Did you feel the course prepared you for the AP exam?

Absolutely. All of the material you'll need to know for the exam is covered in the textbooks. During the year, I short-changed myself a bit and found in April that I wasn't as prepared as I should be. It's easy to not study as much as you should weekly, but I recommend that you do. I didn't, and I had to make up for lost time by doing a lot of extra studying in April and May. Dr. Gillespie did assign less homework to allow time for us to study independently, though. I would highly recommend getting a study book (I used Kaplan's) and reading and studying the whole thing in the spring. It will help you review the entire course and know what you really need to know for the exam; there's no way you can remember everything we learned during the year. However, the course itself prepares you very well for the exam and the Fellman review questions give you a ready-made study tool.

What sort of student would do well in this course? Would you recommend this course to other students (if they are willing to work hard!)? 

Any student who is motivated to learn the course material could do well in this course. You'll need some discipline and time management skills, but overall I would say it's a good starter AP course -- not because the workload is significantly less than other APs, but because of the nature of the subject (it's also one of the shorter exams).

I would definitely recommend this class. I learned a lot and much of it is fairly valuable in the "real world." I find myself thinking about some of the models and principles we learned and applying them to real situations which is cool; it's always neat to see what you've learned become a part of the way you think. For some APs, it seems like the AP exam is just kind of "fluff" -- a formality -- but I actually thought that the exam was helpful for APHG; without the motivation of studying specifically for it, I wouldn't have learned nearly as much.

I hope this helps you decide whether or not APHG is the right course for you! 

~Meredith


AP Geo For The Year posted by Eric Lugg on May 24 2011 at 11:34:16

This was my first chance to take an AP class, Geography had always been entertaining for me. The course at first, was very challenging and it seemed very overwhelming, but the important thing that helped me was getting a work schedule set up for me every week. This course helped me understand geography more, it also opened up some aspects of geography I had never thought about. The work on a normal day was about one to one and a half hours spent working on the class.


My AP Human Geography class review posted by Phillip Adilukito on May 20 2011 at 19:17:34

This was my first AP test and class and I didn't know what to expect. At first, it seemed to be quite challenging, when I slowly progressed into the class, I felt I was learning about the World in one class. This class had helped me learn about my city, state, and world through a geographer's perspective. I highly recomend that all in high school should take this class and learn about their world, through a geographer's perspective and become a geographer.


AP Human Geography posted by Jamie Wheeler on May 16 2011 at 13:54:12

Human Geography was my first AP class. Going in, I had no idea what it would be like. Fortunately, I discovered that it is an interesting subject with a great, enthusiastic teacher.

I feel that the APHG course did prepare me for the exam. I also found it useful to do extra multiple-choice questions and to look over sample free-response questions from the College Board website as the exam approached in the spring. Since Dr. G gives us less homework towards the end to give us extra time to study, this was no problem.

I usually spent about 45 minutes to an hour every day on APHG. Of course, some days could be longer, depending on what was going on in the class. Few days were shorter. I didn't feel it was an excessive amount of work at all.

The assignments I found especially valuable were the Fellmann review questions. Although while I was writing them they could feel like wading through a massive amount of information, they helped me sort and process this information in a way that helped me to internalize it and aided immensely on the exam. In terms of fun, I loved doing some of the Kuby assignments -- very hands-on -- and I enjoyed learning about the interactions of geography with history and politics.

The course undoubtedly enhanced my interest in the subject. I really had very little interest in geography of any sort before this class, but I was surprised to discover how much it influences and impacts so many interesting things, from the origins of our food to major current events.

My communications with other students (and Dr. Gillespie!) on the WWWBoard were very interesting and valuable. If you need to get in touch with Dr. Gillespie, she responds very promptly to email. However, it would have been beneficial if more people had come to the weekly chat time which the teacher set up. Often there were only one or two people there, but perhaps this would be different in different years.

I would very much recommend this course for any dedicated student who's willing to expend the effort it takes to master the material. It's a great first AP class to learn the hows and whys of AP testing, as well as the subject matter. This course is especially suited for students with an interest in history, politics, and/or current events, as well as geography, of course. Nevertheless, I think if you're not interested in geography at the start of the course, you will be by the end!


My Best AP Human Geography Course Ever! posted by David De Vitry on May 26 2010 at 09:47:22

This class was my favorite one this year! This is not only because it is one of my preferred subjects but also because we covered interesting topics and case studies. The textbooks and activities were extremely helpful and relevant to the exam. Near exam day, I found that I had not taken enough notes. I used a review book but I wouldn't recommend it. If I had known, I would have simply used the resources from AP Central. But on the other hand, the multiple choice tests in the review were worthwhile. I think there should have been more FRQs over the class, not only in the end. All in all this was a great experience and I encourage others to discover the intrinsic elements of human interaction

 


Human Geography posted by Olivia Tillett on May 20 2010 at 11:01:03

1. I felt like this class really helped me to learn the basics of Human Geography. I know more now then I did before. I felt prepared for the exam and even when I didn't really know all the answers, I had a good idea of what they might be based on what I had learned.

2. This course enhanced my interest in the subject. I know what Human Geography is about. I have always been interested in history and different cultures. Imagine my surprise when I found a chapter all about cultures. I was able to see other interests of mine pop up in the book.

3. I liked my fellow students. We talked on the board and whenever I had a question, I went to them.

4. This is my first AP class. I felt like this was a good introductory class to AP. It was a low pressure setting with AP work. The teacher was very understanding. I would recommned this class to students who are considering taking an AP class, but who are nervous about being stressed out. I would also recommend this calss to those who have been taking AP classes for years because it was an interesting subject to learn about.


Review of AP Human Geography-Dr. Carol Ann Gillespie posted by Emily Farrar on May 19 2010 at 13:59:19

1. I thought this course did a very good job preparing me for the AP Human Geography Exam, Dr. Gillespie had great advice. I had a lot of useful tools and advice to help me prepare, and for good measure her suggestion of a review manual (Kaplan) was superb. I enjoyed taking the Timed FRQs that she supplied the last couple weeks before the exam and the fact that she took our teaching up to just a few days before our exam meant that she was dedicated to our success, which meant a lot.

 

2. I usually spent about 4 hours a day working, depending on what was due that day/week, plus extra look-up stuff I did. The month before exam day I of course upped my hours though, just as a safety for the exam, and as I'm sure all AP students do/did as well.

 

3. During the week we had two things we had to send in by Monday, "For Review" from our Fellman textbook and "Activity question" from our Kuby textbook. The questions in both of these textbooks I found fun to answer and incredibly helpful in better understanding the material covered in the chapters. The videos assigned were excellant, and doing the "vocabulary" helped me understand particular concepts. The "applications" were A LOT of fun too!!!

 

4. The course did enhance my my interest, and I'll probably take very similiar classes in college. The course collected together all of my favorite aspects of learning and material into one course. Going into the grocery stores I now look at where the produce is from and even think about some of the models I learned, like von Thunen's model. This past weekend I was at my brother's college graduation and after the commencement they had tables set-up all around with signs saying the different majors the kids did. I felt particularly drawn to the signs saying things "Asian studies, and African studies" because this class introduced me to new way of looking at each of these subjects and incorporated much of what I assume will be taught in those classes.

 

5. I felt close to my fellow students. If I needed assistance I knew I had friends in the class to help. The weekly chats were a great idea!!! Unfortunetly I had other conflicts so I wasn't able to make some, but the times I did make it I enjoyed the discussions. I very much liked the partner assignment essay we wrote too.

I also felt close to Dr. Gillespie. By the end of the class I felt like I could go to her for anything, and she would help me as soon and as best as she could. She challenged me to come up with good, strong, desciptive answers and taught me to think and look at the world in new ways.

 

6. I would recommend this class in a heartbeat. I think it's good class to take, whether it's your first AP class or you've been taking them for years. Doing this class you need to be willing to put in the work, but you won't sigh in digust, but look forward to the work. The material covered in this course covers a wide variety of things but all of them very helpful to understand in life, as almost everything is a part of your day-to-day life. The concepts help you think about everything in a different, more in-depth way and you end-up falling in love with the different aspects in your life more because you better understand what went into making the advantages you have in your life possible, and how amazing this world is.


So, you want to take Human Geography? posted by Heather Meehan on May 19 2010 at 09:39:09

First of all, what exactly is Human Geography? People posed me this question every time I mentioned this course, and in the beginning of the year, I had trouble answering. But after taking Dr. Gillespie's course in the subject, I can answer with confidence. Human Geography is life, plain and simple. It touches on every aspect of our experience with our surroundings from culture, to architecture, to religion and language, to agriculture...the list goes on. I am very surprised that no one has heard of this subject--even myself, before this year. Human geography should be required learning for students going into ANY field--science, social studies, literature...even math! just as chemistry is required for any student going into science. Human geography is the chemistry of general learning--it covers all the basics while still posessing a specialization and vocabulary all its own.

By the year's end, you will be thoroughly acquainted with that vocabulary, from population pyramids to nemalthusianism to tertiary sector employment. Dr. Gillespie's well chosen texts and activities will provide you with a solid grounding in the subject and will also provide you with the tools of a professional geographer--experimentation, interpreting data, and field experience. If you're like me, by the end of the year you will have multiple new ideas for future careers, from toponymy (the study of place names) to urban planning. This course reinforced and intensified all my previous interests, while at the same time broadening my horizons and refining my perspective.

In general, I spent 4-5 or more hours a week on the course material, with an occasional day devoted almost entirely to HG activities. In the course intro, it is suggested that you do not wait till the weekend to finish the kuby activity assignments. I strongly reccomend that you listen to this advice. I didn't, and it made my life much more difficult. This course is set up a little differently from most APs, since the deadline for submissions is on Mondays. I suggest working through the assignments as if the deadline was on Friday, just to give yourself less stress. (Again, quite good advice that I myself did not follow) Another thing you need to be aware of is that the courseload is slightly uneven from week to week. Some weeks it would be quite heavy, with a large amount of textbook reading, written assignments, and practical activities. Some weeks the course load was much lighter, with only a video and activity or so to submit. I used the extra time to catch up on other courses, or to do my own studying, but you'll need to plan accordingly and do whatever works for you. One of the great things about this course is the variety of approaches--you won't get bored by falling into the same routine of textbook reading. You'll behave like a professional geographer through practical applications and self-guided research.

One of the best things about this course is Dr. Gillespie herself. She is friendly, understanding and extensively well informed. There were some weeks when I was drowing in the accumulated workload of my APs and College Courses, but she was always willing to work with me and I am endlessly grateful for her flexibility. Also, she is the only AP teacher I have met so far to send out personal handwritten notes to each student at the beginning of the year! The moment I got her note and read through the summer reading list, I knew I was going to love this course. She goes out of her way to make sure everyone is getting the most out of their experience, and she does an EXCELLENT job of clearly explaining what to expect from the exam. Although she seems to have a busy schedule, she never fails to respond to posts or emails and she is unfailingly patient and positive. Another great aspect of this course were the weekly chats, which were invaluable in getting to know my fellow students. I advise you to make friends in the class--I did, and it really helped, especially when my used copy of the kuby textbook was missing pages and I had to beg for someone to email me the assignments. (Another good piece of advice: invest in a BRAND NEW kuby workbook. Really. It will save you stress and money in the long run) I am hugely indebted to everyone in the class, and I will miss them all in the upcoming year!!!!


Review of AP Human Geography class posted by John Ehrett on May 17 2009 at 20:15:37

I really enjoyed this class. Overall, I felt like I gained a much better understanding of geographic, sociologic, and economic principles, as well as their real-world significance.

This class prepared me very well for the AP exam and I feel reasonably confident about the recent test. Dr. Gillespie provided specific feedback on all workbook exercises, and made study aids and other helps available before the exam. These were extremely useful.

Generally, this class took me about 30-45 minutes per day, with one day a week being a "geography day" during which I devoted 1-2 hours to the subject. The "Review Questions" at the end of each chapter were essential to gaining a thorough understanding of geographic principles, and it did take a substantial amount of time to adequately answer each question.

Of the activities, those I enjoyed most involved analyzing the global economy and the roles that different nations play within an increasingly globalized society. As many questions on the AP exam dealt with this topic, I felt I was well prepared for the test.

Students and parents may wish to be aware that one of the textbooks for this course, "Human Geography in Action" by Michael Kuby, is written from a very left-leaning perspective. In dealing with issues such as religion, jihad, and the Iraq War, this textbook clearly has a leftist bias. Many of the activities in the book, however, are extremely helpful in reinforcing geographic concepts, especially in the first 9 or 10 chapters.

Overall I really enjoyed this class and felt it prepared me well for the AP exam. As an NCFCA (National Christian Forensics and Communication Association) debater, I found it extremely valuable. I would recommend it to students who enjoy international studies, economics, or geopolitics.


Dr. Gillespie's Human Geography class (Take it!) posted by Emma Manning on May 17 2008 at 13:21:09

I highly recommend taking Dr. Gillespie's AP human geography course. The material is all very interesting, and many of the assignments are fun and interactive, either done online or actually near your own home.

For example, one of the big projects was the "Sense of Place" field trip, which involved taking pictures of my neighborhood, drawing my own map, and writing a brief report on the types of houses and such in my neighborhood. Even though I have lived there my whole life, I felt like the class made me see everywhere with a new perspective. This is true both of very familiar places and of places I've never even been!

Although there are some big projects, both the course and the corresponding test are on the easy side for APs. This would make it a particularly good choice for someone doing an AP course for the first time. However, I would honestly recommend it to anyone. It should prove interesting to all, whether or not they have previous experience with or interest in geography!



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