Advanced Placement United States History is a course designed to instruct students on a college level in the overarching categories of critically understanding United States history, acquiring the skills deemed essential to a historian, and writing in varied and academic contexts.  The simple “retelling of the story” is not the goal of this course; instead we focus on understanding the complexities that have defined the people and cultures of the United States.  During the length of the course, several DBQ essays, thematic essays, and short answer responses are completed in either the unit tests, final exams, or as a regular aspect of the course. The course instruction and student preparation is designed to not just pass the College Board exam but to do so convincingly.  One overriding belief of the instructor is that United States history is a “living” discipline and deserves extensive examination.