||Who designs the AP German Language and Culture Course and exam?
The AP German Language and Culture Course and Exam is designed by a committee of college faculty and expert AP teachers to reflect college-level expectations. These experts define the scope and goals of the course, articulating what students should know and be able to do upon completing it. The committee's work is informed by data collected from a range of colleges and universities to ensure that the curriculum reflects current scholarship and advances in the discipline. The committee then works with the Educational Testing Service to develop multiple-choice and free-response exam questions.
How do I determine who should be in an AP class?
The College Board recommends allowing any motivated and academically prepared student to take an AP course. We encourage the elimination of barriers that restrict underserved students access to AP courses. Schools should make every effort to ensure that AP classes reflect the diversity of the student population. How much previous exposure to German should students have before taking the AP German Language and Culture course? This course provides students with opportunities to demonstrate proficiency in each of the three modes of communication (Interpersonal, Interpretive, Presentational), in the Intermediate to Pre-Advanced range, as described in the ACTFL Performance Guidelines for K—12 Learners. The exam presupposes an average of three to four years of language instruction at the high school level.
How can I learn about the AP German Language and Culture Course and Exam?
To learn about the design and intent of the course and exam, download a copy of the AP German Language and Culture Course and Exam Description, Effective Fall 2011 (.pdf/3MB). This publication describes the exam format and contains sample questions, as well as scoring guidelines for the free-response questions. Bound copies are available for purchase at the College Board Store.
What are the key elements of the AP German Language and Culture Exam?
The exam features the following key elements: (1) contextualized tasks-that is, exam tasks and source materials include advance organizers and time for previewing the questions; (2) authentic audio materials (each audio source is played twice); and (3) a wide variety of authentic print and audio materials that reflect the linguistic and cultural diversity of the German-speaking world. To best prepare for the exam, you should ensure that students encounter representative authentic texts and audio sources in instructional activities and assessments. The exam includes multiple-choice and free-response questions. Multiple-choice questions assess Written and Print Interpretive Communication and Audio and Visual Interpretive Communication. Free-response questions consist of four tasks designed to assess student performance in written and spoken Interpersonal and Presentational communication. Each section of the exam contributes to 50 percent of the score.
How is the multiple-choice section scored?
Total scores on the multiple-choice section are based on the number of questions answered correctly. Points are not deducted for incorrect answers, and no points are awarded for unanswered questions.
How is the free-response section scored?
Each summer, college faculty and AP teachers come together to score the AP German Language and Culture Exam, using the College Board's Scoring Guidelines for AP World Languages and Cultures. These "AP Readers" use a holistic scale to assign each of the four tasks a score. The scores from the free-response and multiple-choice sections are then added together to determine the student's raw score, which is converted to an AP score.
How does the exam assess cultural knowledge?
The exam assesses cultural knowledge throughout, and not in a separate "culture" section. Students are not asked isolated questions about cultural trivia; rather, they are expected to demonstrate understanding of cultural information presented in print and audio texts. The best way to prepare students for this aspect of the exam is to use a variety of authentic materials during instruction and assessment. This will ensure that you continue to build and evaluate students' understanding of cultural products, practices, and perspectives.
Are students allowed to use a dictionary when taking the exam?
Use of dictionaries or other reference works during the AP Exam is not permitted. German is used exclusively in the exam materials, with the exception of the directions in the exam booklet, which are printed in English and German. Students' responses must be in German.
Where can I find released questions from past exams?
A wealth of exam information is available at the AP German Language and Culture Exam page on AP Central. Free-response questions are released annually 48 hours after an exam is administered. By the end of summer, additional information about the current year's administration becomes available, including scoring guidelines, student samples (with commentary that explains the scoring of each sample), and the total score distributions.
Where can I find a practice exam?
A practice exam for the AP German Language and Culture course is available through the AP Course Audit website. Because many teachers asked to have practice exams located in a secure environment, you can find these resources through your AP Course Audit account. Just click on the Secure Documents link within the Resources section of your Course Status Page.
Note that practice exams are for classroom use only. To ensure their integrity, please keep them in a secure location; do not give them to students as take-home assignments; make sure to collect them after administering them in class; and do NOT post them on school or other websites. You may use questions from the practice exam to create shorter assessments, as long as they are paper-based, administered in your classroom, and collected from students following the testing period.
How can I learn more about teaching the course?
You can download free resources from the AP German Language and Culture Home Page on AP Central. In addition, professional development is offered through AP Summer Institutes and one-day, face-to-face workshops, where trained AP Consultants discuss best practices, instructional design, materials and resources, and strategies for taking the exam. You may also find teaching strategies and course syllabi in the AP German Language and Culture Course and Exam, Effective Fall 2011.
Another great resource is the AP German Language and Culture Teacher Community. This collaborative space allows you to join in active discussion groups with colleagues, share resources, and get new ideas for instruction.
What are course-planning-and-pacing guides and how can they benefit teachers?
AP German Language and Culture Course Planning and Pacing Guides (CPPGs) are resources developed to demonstrate several approaches to teaching the course. The guides were written by teachers from different areas of the country, working in a variety of teaching environments. Each publication begins with an introduction to the school setting and then presents a unit-by-unit approach, which includes instructional activities, formative and summative assessments, and links to the authentic materials used to teach each unit (see the resource section). Teachers can refer to these guides as they plan their course. CPPGs are available here.
What is the AP® Course Audit? Where can I find more information about it?
The AP Course Audit provides teachers and administrators with clearly articulated guidelines on curricular and resource requirements for AP courses. It also gives colleges and universities confidence that AP courses are designed to meet the same clearly articulated college-level criteria across high schools.
When do I need to submit a syllabus for authorization?
If you are a new teacher, you must participate in the AP Course Audit process. Your options include (a) creating your own syllabus and submitting it via the AP Course Auditwebsite or (b) adopting and submitting one of the four Annotated Sample Syllabi as your own. Once your syllabus is approved, an official at your school will reauthorize it from year to year. You will need to submit a revised syllabus only if you make major changes to the one on file.
New or revised syllabi must be completed by January 31 of the academic year in which the course is offered.
What do I need to show in my syllabus?
To help you design your syllabus, you may download a Syllabus Development Guide and four Annotated Sample Syllabi, which meet all the curricular requirements of the revised course. In general, teachers need to show the following in their syllabus: (1) use of authentic print, audio, and video materials in class; (2) activities that target each of the three modes of communication (Interpersonal, Interpretive, Presentational); (3) lessons or units that focus on the six course themes; and (4) activities that encourage students to demonstrate comprehension of cultural products, practices, and perspectives and to make comparisons among cultures.
What resources are available to support the course-authorization process?
The AP Course Audit website is designed to support teachers in creating a syllabus for authorization. The website features information and supports, which include the following resources:
Do colleges and universities give credit or advanced placement for a grade of 3 on an AP Exam?
- Syllabus Development Guide: provides a detailed explanation of each curricular requirement, including scoring components, evaluation guidelines, definitions of key terms, and samples of evidence that highlight the level of detail reviewers expect to see in a college-level syllabus.
- Four Annotated Sample Syllabi: demonstrate a variety of ways teachers can fulfill curricular requirements within the context of a syllabus.
Students should check the credit-and-placement policy at the colleges and universities they are considering. Policies vary from one institution to another; they may also vary from department to department within an institution. The AP Credit Policy Info tool provides information on credit policies at specific colleges and universities.