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Important Updates

  • The Digital Audio Submission (DAS) portal is now available for 2018 for AP coordinators and designated school staff to set up account access. 
  • The Digital Audio Capture (DAC) app is available as a recording option in 2018. The app will be available in March 2018 to be downloaded and run on iPads.
  • If your school currently uses school-owned and -controlled Chromebooks for high stakes standardized assessments and would like to use them for recording student audio responses for the AP French, German, Italian, and Spanish Language and Culture and Music Theory Exams, you must call AP Services for Educators before March 1, 2018 to confirm if your school’s Chromebook recording application and configuration meet AP Program requirements.

Note: the following information does not apply to the AP Chinese and Japanese Exams. Go to AP Chinese Language and Culture and AP Japanese Language and Culture for information about those exams.

Ordering materials

Each order for an AP Exam in world languages and cultures (except for Chinese and Japanese) contains at least one master listening and one master speaking CD. Some schools administer the speaking sections of the exams in multiple locations. If you plan to do this, order one CD for each location. You can order additional master CDs when you order your AP Exams online.

Visit AP Exam Ordering to order your CDs and AP Exams online for each type of exam.

Necessary equipment

  • CD player: You will need a high-quality CD player with speakers to play the listening and speaking master CDs. If you are recording the speaking portion in more than one room, you will need a CD player at each of these locations.
  • Recording devices/equipment: You will need digital audio recording devices or equipment to record student responses at each recording location. Acceptable recording methods in 2018 are:
    • Computers with MP3 recording software and headset/microphone
    • Handheld digital recorders
    • Digital language lab
    • Digital Audio Capture (DAC) app running on iPad tablet

Visit Recording Audio for information on recording options.

Submitting Audio Files

All students’ recorded speaking response files must be submitted online through the Digital Audio Submission (DAS) portal.  Visit our page on Submitting Audio for information on how to submit student responses. The DAS portal will be available in early April 2018 for AP coordinators and school staff to create accounts. 

Exam Preparation

Take these steps to prepare for the recording portion of the AP French, German, Italian, and Spanish Language and Culture Exams:

  • You may administer AP Exams in world languages and cultures in a regular classroom, a language lab, or a computer lab.
  • Determine the digital recording technology students will use to record their responses for the speaking portion of the exams. (If using a digital language lab, computer, or handheld digital recorder, files must be saved in MP3 format.) 
  • Hold several practice recording sessions so that you, teachers, your school's technical staff (if applicable), proctors, students, and technical staff (if applicable) gain a full understanding of the process.
  • Encourage AP teachers to practice recording student responses using the method that will be used on exam day.
  • Make sure that students have the opportunity to practice with released free-response questions and short-answer questions available in the course and exam descriptions, and the teacher-accessible practice exams on the AP Course Audit website.
  • If using a digital language lab, computer, or handheld digital recorder, have proctors practice saving and naming MP3 files before the exam administration. (If your school is using the DAC app for recording, the app directly names and saves the files with the student’s AP number. Learn more about the DAC app here.)
  • Give proctors a way to cross-reference students' AP numbers to ensure that the proper number is used when they name and save the MP3 files. (Applies only when recording with a digital language lab, computer, or handheld digital recorder.)
  • Remind proctors that they will need to verify that each file can be played and the audio level of each file is adequate.
  • Work with your school's administration to establish a quiet testing environment. Refrain from using bells and making PA announcements during testing, if possible, and ensure that proctors do not converse with other staff during the exam.

Extended Time

If a student taking an AP French, German, Italian, or Spanish Language and Culture Exam has been approved for an accommodation of extended time, it’s important that the proctor understands how to apply the extended time during the exam. These exams don’t offer master CDs with embedded extended time due to the varied needs of students with disabilities. (The Chinese and Japanese Language and Culture exams do have 50% and 100% extended time embedded in the exam CDs because the entire exam is administered on a computer.)

AP coordinators and proctors should review the instructions for determining extended time for the AP French, German, Italian, and Spanish Language and Culture Exams on pages 86-89  of the  2017-18 AP Coordinator’s Manual.

Although master CDs can’t be paused during a standard exam administration, remind proctors administering AP Exams to students approved for extended time that they can apply extended time to master CDs by pausing between tracks or after the audio stimulus is played.

Reminder: As noted in the 2017-18 AP Coordinator’s Manual, questions in Section II, Part B require students to provide oral responses. In this part, students are limited to short responses that should not exceed the time allotted on the master CD (20 seconds or two minutes, depending on the task). If a student is approved for extended time for this part, the extended time should be used for preparing responses, not for creating responses that are longer than requested.  

Remember that to take an AP Exam with accommodations—including extended time—a student must be approved for accommodations by the College Board Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office. Providing accommodations to students without College Board approval will result in the cancellation of these students’ scores. 

If you have questions about applying  extended time to exams for students approved for this accommodation , or any other accommodations, contact SSD by calling 844-255-7728 (toll free in the United States and Canada) or 212-713-8333, or by emailing ssd@info.collegeboard.org.

Reference materials

  • Refer to the AP Coordinator's Manual for full instructions and procedures for preparing for and administering the AP Exams in world languages.
  • Refer to the AP Exam Instructions for exam administration proctor scripts, including scripts specific to each audio recording option.
  • Review AP Digital Audio Submission (DAS) Help, a step-by-step guide to using the DAS portal to upload and submit students' recorded responses. (Updated version for 2017-18 will be posted in spring 2018.) Also access archived recordings of webinars about the DAS portal. (These webinars were recorded in spring 2017 and provide a general overview of the DAS portal.)
  • If your school is planning to use the DAC app to record students’ responses, check the DAC App page in March 2018 for the DAC App Overview, a guide to using the app.

AP Chinese and Japanese Exams

AP Chinese Language and Culture and AP Japanese Language and Culture Exams are delivered on CD and administered at a computer. Detailed information about administering these exams, including hardware and software requirements, is available in the AP Coordinator's Manual and AP Exam Instructions book.