CROSSCURRENTS: Aristotle's Common Topics Meet the AP History Courses



Aristotle's Common Topics Meet the AP History Courses

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AP U.S. History
AP European History
AP World History
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Crosscurrents is an in-depth guide to the art of historical interpretation and argument for Advanced Placement and college-level history courses.

Using Aristotle’s Common Topics as a foundation, Crosscurrents demonstrates a way of approaching any argument in a systemized and structured manner. Each of the five Common Topics entails distinct moves that writers or speakers make in developing their arguments. Crosscurrents examines those moves in detail and provides myriad examples and exercises to master those moves. By bridging the gap between historical and rhetorical thinking and writing skills, Crosscurrents serves as an interdisciplinary guide to engaging in meaningful inquiry with primary and secondary sources and writing strong academic essays.

  • 58 primary and 19 secondary sources from all 3 Advanced Placement history courses
  • Integration of the official 6 Historical Thinking Skills and 3 Reasoning Processes
  • Historical and rhetorical analysis of both textual and visual sources
  • 10 writing prompts and 49 application exercises
  • Sample student responses with scores and annotations
  • Guidance and application for the AP history writing rubrics, and tips for AP® exam preparedness

View or Download a sample of CROSSCURRENTS that includes the complete table of contents and an abridged sample chapter.

About the Authors

Author Christopher Freiler

Christopher Freiler has taught Advanced Placement European History at Hinsdale Central High School in Hinsdale, IL, since 1993. Additionally, he has taught Philosophy Honors since 2003, a course he proposed and developed. He has been involved with the national AP program since 1997, serving as a workshop consultant and in leadership positions for the annual exam scoring, the re-design of the AP European History course curriculum, and in test development. Chris earned his B.A. in History at Northwestern University, M.A. in History at University of Virginia, and M.A. in Philosophy at Northern Illinois University.

Author Stephen Heller, Ph.D.

Stephen Heller, Ph.D. taught AP English Language and Composition at Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, IL, for 22 years, eight of which were combined with AP US History in American Studies. Since 1999, he has served in numerous capacities with the College Board, including consultant, test development committee member, co-designer for Vertical Teams workshops, AP Exam Question Leader, Table Leader, and Reader. Steve earned his B.A. in English at Northwestern University, M.A. in the Teaching of English at the University of Illinois Chicago, and Ph.D. in Educational Administration and Supervision from Loyola University of Chicago. Steve credits much of his interdisciplinary pursuits to his early training as a musician.