AP Chinese Language and Culture

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About the Exam

Important Update

2021 AP Chinese Language and Culture Exams will be administered in early May, late May, and early June. This subject does not have an at-home version of the exam—access to online translation applications and other resources means that a full-length exam can’t be securely and fairly administered at home. 2021 AP Chinese Language and Culture Exams will only be available in schools or school-proctored locations.

The exam will cover the full scope of course content, giving you the opportunity to qualify for college credit and placement.

As previously announced to AP coordinators, 2021 AP Chinese Language and Culture Exams will be administered on a new online platform that can be accessed on PCs, Macs, or Chromebooks with an internet connection. CDs will no longer be used for these exams. More information will be shared with your AP coordinator and teacher in the coming weeks. 

There are differences between the paper and digital versions of some 2021 AP Exams, and those variations differ by course. The information below applies to AP Chinese Language and Culture only. View a summary of all 2021 AP Exam formats.

Learn more about 2021 testing.


As the exam approaches, take advantage of AP Daily: Live Review sessions April 19–29.

The AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam will test your ability to apply communication skills developed in the course, including interpreting different types of written and audio texts, writing to and speaking with others, and presenting your ideas in written and spoken Chinese. Throughout the exam, you will be asked to demonstrate your understanding of Chinese-speaking cultures.

The exam is administered at a computer. On exam day, you will read text on the screen, listen through a headset, type using the keyboard, and speak into a microphone.

Chinese text on the screen can be displayed in simplified characters or in traditional characters, and you may toggle between the two versions if necessary. When typing your responses in the Writing part of the exam, you may choose from the following three input methods: Pinyin Simplified, Pinyin Traditional, and Bopomofo. The display and input options will have no effect on your exam score.

Exam Duration
2hrs

Exam Dates

  • Fri, May 14, 2021,
    12 PM Local

    Computer-Based, In School

    AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam

    This is the Administration 1 date for the AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam.

  • Fri, May 21, 2021,
    12 PM Local

    Computer-Based, In School

    AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam

    This is the Administration 2 date for the AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam.

  • Fri, Jun 4, 2021,
    12 PM Local

    Computer-Based, In School

    AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam

    This is the Administration 3 date for the AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam.

Exam Components

Note on 2021 Exams

There are differences between the paper and digital versions of some 2021 AP Exams, and those variations differ by course. The information below applies to AP Chinese Language and Culture only. View a summary of all 2021 AP Exam formats.

To ensure equitable and secure testing of full course content and skills, the AP Chinese Language and Culture Exam will only be available in schools or in school-proctored locations.

25–35 questions 20mins 25% of Score

  • This section consists of a variety of audio materials, including transportation announcements, voice messages, school conversations, radio reports, instructions, and dialogues. It is divided into 2 subsections:
    • The first consists of rejoinders. You will listen to a series of brief conversations and after listening to each one, you will select the most logical next response in the conversation from the choices offered. (10-15 questions; 10 minutes; 10% of exam score)
    • The second includes a range of listening selections. (15–20 questions; 10 minutes; 15% of exam score)
  • Questions will test your ability to:
    • Identify the main ideas and supporting details in the audio material
    • Determine the meaning of a variety of vocabulary and deduce the meaning of unfamiliar words
    • Decide the meaning of a text based on cultural and/or interdisciplinary information
    • Infer implied meaning through context

35–40 questions 1hr 25% of Score

  • This section consists of a variety of written materials (e.g., journalistic and literary texts, announcements, advertisements, signs, brochures, and posters). Questions will test your ability to:
    • Identify the main ideas and supporting details in the written material
    • Determine the meaning of a variety of vocabulary and deduce the meaning of unfamiliar words
    • Decide the meaning of a text based on cultural and/or interdisciplinary information
    • Infer implied meaning through context

2 questions 30mins 25% of Score

  • Presentational Writing: Narrate a story suggested by a series of pictures (15 minutes; 15% of exam score)
  • Interpersonal Writing: Read and answer an email message (15 minutes; 10% of exam score)

2 tasks, 7 questions 11mins 25% of Score

  • Interpersonal Speaking: Respond to a series of 6 thematically linked questions as part of a simulated conversation (4 minutes; 10% of exam score).
  • Presentational Speaking: Deliver a presentation on a given aspect of Chinese culture. You’ll have 1 minute to read the prompt, 4 minutes to prepare, and 2 minutes to present (7 minutes; 15% of exam score).

Exam Preparation

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