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All schools that want to label a course “AP” must get authorization by going through the AP Course Audit. This means submitting two things:

  • A subject-specific AP Course Audit Form
  • A course syllabus

Teachers have the option to create their own syllabus or adopt one of the sample syllabi provided. A teacher-created syllabus is checked by our reviewers to ensure that the course fulfills the AP Program’s course-specific curricular and resource requirements.

We offer plenty of resources, below, to help teachers understand course requirements and create a syllabus that fulfills these.

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Designing Your AP Chinese Language and Culture Course

The AP Chinese Language and Culture course should be designed by your school to provide students with a learning experience equivalent to that of a college course that develops students’ proficiencies throughout the Intermediate range. (Typically, this is a fourth-semester college course.) Your course should be designed to deepen students’ immersion into the language and culture of the Chinese-speaking world, providing them with ongoing and varied opportunities to further develop their proficiencies across the full range of language skills.

Students enrolling in AP Chinese Language and Culture are typically in their fourth or fifth year of language study, or have had equivalent experience with the language.

Getting to Know the Course and Exam

The key document for each AP course is the course and exam description. Start by reviewing it to understand the objectives and expectations of the AP course and exam.

Creating Your Syllabus

Use these resources to design your syllabus.


Download this document for more help creating your syllabus.

  • Syllabus Development Guide: AP Chinese Language and Culture (.pdf/919KB) - Includes the guidelines reviewers use to evaluate syllabi along with three samples of evidence for each requirement. This guide also specifies the level of detail required in the syllabus to receive course authorization.

These four annotated sample AP Chinese Language and Culture syllabi show how the curricular requirements can be demonstrated in a syllabus and what level of detail you’ll need to include.

Your course must fulfill these requirements, and your syllabus should make it clear how the requirements will be addressed.

AP Chinese Language and Culture curricular requirements:

  • The teacher has read the most recent AP Chinese Language and Culture Course Description (.pdf/2.4MB).
  • The course prepares students to demonstrate their level of Chinese proficiency across the three communicative modes—Interpretive, Interpersonal, and Presentational—as articulated in Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century (Standards), and at the Intermediate level as articulated in the ACTFL Performance Descriptors for Language Learners. (For Standards descriptions, see the Standards Executive Summary. For Intermediate level performance descriptions, see ACTFL Performance Descriptors for Language Learners.)
  • In addition to communication, the course also addresses the Standards’ other four goals: cultural competence, connections to other school disciplines, comparisons between Chinese language and culture and those of the learners, and the use of the language within the broader communities beyond the traditional school environment.
  • The teacher uses Chinese almost exclusively in class and encourages students to do likewise.
  • Language instruction frequently integrates a range of Chinese cultural content that exposes students to perspectives broader than their immediate environment, for example, the fundamental aspects of daily life in China, Chinese family and societal structures, and national and international issues.
  • Assessments are frequent, varied, and explicitly linked to the Standards’ goal areas. Prior to assigning an assessment task, teachers share with their students the criteria against which their performances will be evaluated.
  • The teacher chooses from among both conventional print and aural materials such as textbooks, audiovisual materials, and web-based content designed for language learning. They also make use of materials generally used by native Chinese speakers, such as print and web-based texts; animated computer programs; and video-, CD-, and DVD-based products. Teachers scaffold students’ experiences with these texts, particularly those that would normally be considered beyond the grasp of high school students.
  • The course teaches students to develop both communication and language learning strategies, such as inferring meaning either through sociocultural context or linguistic features.
  • The teacher plans and implements structured cooperative learning activities to support ongoing and frequent interpersonal interaction, and employs a range of instructional strategies to meet the diverse needs of his or her learners.
  • The course provides students with opportunities to develop both Chinese handwriting skills and word processing skills in Hanyu Pinyin or bo-po-mo-fo.

AP Chinese Language and Culture resource requirements:

  • The school ensures that each student has a copy of the texts utilized in the course for use inside and outside of the classroom, and has access to an in-school computer capable of inputting and displaying Chinese characters.
  • The school facilitates student use, outside of instructional time, of in-school or public library computers capable of inputting and displaying Chinese characters.

Because world language instruction targets proficiency building, which can be accomplished in multiple ways with or without a specific textbook, the AP Chinese Language and Culture course does not have a list of example textbooks that meet the curricular requirements of AP Chinese Language and Culture.

Before you submit your syllabus, use this checklist to make sure it has all the elements required.