The AP Japanese Language and Culture course is designed to be comparable to college/university Japanese courses that represent the point at which students complete approximately 300 hours of college-level classroom instruction. Like the corresponding college courses, the AP Japanese Language and Culture course supports students as they develop the productive, receptive, and cultural skills necessary to communicate with native speakers of Japanese.

The course prepares you to demonstrate your level of proficiency in Japanese across the three communicative modes (Interpersonal, Interpretive, and Presentational) and the five goal areas (Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities) as outlined in the Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century. The course aims to provide you many opportunities to develop your language skills while learning about Japanese culture and society.

Content and Skills

The AP Japanese Language and Culture course explores contemporary social, political, and educational issues, examines the role of religion within Japanese society; discusses traditional versus modern male and female gender roles, as well as more customary topics, such as traditional Japanese arts, customs, festivals, geography, and history, at deep and rich levels. Authentic materials such as newspapers, magazine articles, podcasts, videos, films, music, poetry and short stories are frequently used in instruction to help improve your comprehension of written and spoken Japanese. In this course you develop your cultural awareness, and come to better understand Japanese cultural practices and perspectives

A goal of this course is to refine your ability to communicate effectively in Japanese. To accomplish this, you acquire significant vocabulary and learn effective communication strategies. You improve your linguistic accuracy. To explore the often challenging texts you will acquire a significant number of kanji. You refine your handwriting and keyboarding skills in Japanese.

Throughout the course, you develop the interpersonal communication skills that enable you to provide and obtain information, state and defend your opinions, and express your feelings using culturally and socially correct language and register. You also learn to effectively narrate life events.

As this course focuses on the three modes of communication, you will be expected to perform the following communication tasks:

Interpersonal Mode (two-way, interactive communication)

  • Orally initiate or respond to greetings in a culturally appropriate manner.
  • Provide and obtain information on a variety of topics in written and spoken Japanese.
  • Provide and obtain preferences in written and spoken Japanese in a culturally appropriate manner.
  • Offer and respond in written and spoken Japanese to suggestions, requests, or invitations in a culturally appropriate manner.

Interpretive Mode (understanding of spoken or written communication)

  • Grasp detail and make inferences on social or cultural issues when listening to spoken Japanese.
  • Understand the main ideas and significant details of authentic print, audio, visual, and audiovisual materials.
  • Grasp detail and make inferences concerning expressed opinions on social or cultural issues.
  • Grasp the gist and understand the details of statement s about concrete topics relevant to your daily experience.

Presentational Mode (creating spoken or written communication)

  • Describe people, places, or events and activities that are familiar to the student in writing on a computer.
  • Describe one’s past experience in writing on a computer.
  • Describe Japanese special events in writing on a computer.
  • Announce information concerning school-related events or activities.
  • Narrate in a coherent manner and display cultural knowledge through storytelling.
  • Describe Japanese cultural practices and products and present your own views on them.
  • Compare and contrast experiences or things of a similar nature.


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