AP Italian Language and Culture Course & Exam Description
In today’s global community, competence in more than one language is an essential part of communication and cultural understanding . Study of another language not only provides individuals with the ability to express thoughts and ideas for their own purposes but also provides them access to perspectives and knowledge that are only available through the language and culture . Advanced language learning offers social, cultural, academic, and workplace benefits that will serve students throughout their lives . The proficiencies acquired through the study of languages and literatures endow language learners with cognitive, analytical, and communication skills that carry over into many other areas of their academic studies The three modes of communication (Interpersonal, Interpretive, and Presentational) defined in the Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st
Century are foundational to the AP Italian Language and Culture course . The AP course provides students with opportunities to demonstrate their proficiency in each of the three modes in the Intermediate to Pre-Advanced range as described in the ACTFL Performance Guidelines for K–12 Learners.
The AP Italian Language and Culture course takes a holistic approach to language proficiency and recognizes the complex interrelatedness of comprehension and comprehensibility, vocabulary usage, language control, communication strategies, and cultural awareness . Students should learn language structures in context and use them to convey meaning . In standards-based world language classrooms, the instructional focus is on function and not on the examination of irregularity and complex grammatical paradigms about the target language . Language structures should be addressed inasmuch as they serve the communicative task and not as an end goal unto themselves . The AP Italian Language and Culture course strives to promote both fluency and accuracy in language use and not to overemphasize grammatical accuracy at the expense of communication . In order to best facilitate the study of language and culture, the course is taught in the target language The AP Italian Language and Culture course engages students in an exploration of culture in both contemporary and historical contexts . The course develops students’ awareness and appreciation of cultural products, both tangible (e .g ., tools, books, music) and intangible (e .g ., laws, conventions, institutions); practices (patterns of social interactions within a culture); and perspectives (values, attitudes, and assumptions that underlie both practices and products)