Maize (Zea mays ssp. mays L.) is an important crop as well as an important model organism for fundamental research into the inheritance and functions of genes, the mechanistic relation between cytological crossovers and recombination, and the origin of the nucleolus. AR2/ERF is a large family of transcription factors in plant, encoding transcriptional regulators with a variety of functions involved in the developmental and physiological processes. Here, starting from database of Zea mays, we identified 292 AP2/ERF genes by in silico cloning method using the AP2/ERF conserved domain amino acid sequence of Arabidopsis thaliana as probe. Based on the number of AP2/ERF domains and the function of the genes, those AP2/ERF genes from maize were classified into four subfamilies named the AP2, DREB, ERF and RAV. The genome distribution of maize AP2/ERF genes strongly supports the hypothesis that genome-wide contributed to the expansion of the AP2/ERF gene family. Bioinformatics analysis suggests that maize AP2/ERF proteins can potentially participate in a variety of stress responses, endowing them with the capacity to regulate a multitude of transcriptional programs. In addition, similar expression patterns suggest functional conservation between some maize AP2/ERF gesnes and their close Arabidopsis homologs.