Here are the 100 (or more) most frequently occurring terms on the AP exam. This list was compiled by AP exam graders and writers. Thousands of terms were ranked 1-5 based on how important they are and how often they are included in the exam. These 100 all scored 5 or near to it. Please familiarize yourself with these by clicking through to their corresponding key terms or chapter summary page.
Chapter 1:The Science of Psychology
A Sample of a brand new Italian ice flavor is being tested on random individuals to see if they like how it tastes or have not so good reactions.
Natural Selection
The Dependent Variable of the Italian ice experiment was the recipients reaction to the taste of it
The Independent Variable
Hypothesis
Evolution
Experimental Group
Control Group
Correlation Coefficient
Normal Distribution
Gestalt Psychology
Placebo Effect
Empiricism
Longitudinal Research
Chapter 2: The Biological Perspective
Somatic Nervous System
Sympathetic Nervous System
Synapse
Action Potential
Cerebellum
Cerebral Cortex
Central Nervous System
Cerebral Hemispheres
Dendrite
Electroencephalograph
Neurotransmitter
Plasticity
Parasympathetic nervous system
Chapter 3: Sensation and Perception
Absolute Threshold
Binocular Depth Cues
Depth perception
Distance cues
Pitch
Gestalt grouping principles
Perceptual constancy
Perceptual set
Sensory adaptation
Significance difference
Just noticeable difference
Chapter 4: Consciousness
REM Sleep
NREM Sleep
Consciousness
Circadian Rhythms
Chapter 5: Learning
Classical Conditioning
Conditioned Stimulus
Conditioned Response
Extinction
Law of effect
Operant Conditioning
Learned Helplessness
Positive reinforcement
Reinforcement (Positive/Negative)
Chapter 6: Memory
Artificial Intelligence
Chunking
Forgetting Curve
Recall
Hindsight Bias
Information-processing model
Long-term memory
Proactive interference
Retroactive interference
Rehearsal (Maintenance/Elaborative)
Semantic Memory
Serial position effect
Chapter 7: Cognition
Algorithms
Emotional Intelligence
Functional Fixedness
Heuristics
Mental imagery
Intelligence
IQ
Nature-Nurture controversy
Schema
Script
Self-consistency bias
Chapter 8: Development Across the Lifespan
Cognitive development
DNA
Developmental stages
Overregularization
Attachment
Chapter 9: Motivation and Emotion
Hierarchy of needs
Need for achievement
Extrinsic / Intrinsic Motivation
Chapter 10: Stress and Health
General Adaption Syndrome
Multiple approach-avoidance conflict
Chapter 11: Social Psychology
Attitude Change (attitude vs. behavior)
Attribution Theory
Cognitive Dissonance Theory
Conformity
Fundamental Attribution Error
Milgram's obedience experiment
Prejudice
Prosocial behavior
Social Influence
Chapter 12: Theories of Personality
Ego
Id
Expectancy Bias
Introversion -extraversion
Locus of Control
Personality
Psychoanalytic theory
Unconscious
Traits
Chapter 13: Psychological Disorders
Anxiety
Anxiety Disorder
Depression
Phobias
Psychosomatic disorders
Chapter 14: Psychological Therapies
Aversion Therapy
Free association
Mental illness
Psychotherapy