Dalian American International School

High School Curriculum

Standards-based Grading at DAIS

Academic grades are determined using a standards-based grading system which reports how well the student mastered the knowledge and skills from the adopted standards. Grades are based on academic factors only; non-academic factors such as attendance, behavior, effort, and responsibility are not factored into grades.

Grade Point Average (GPA) is not weighted. Only courses completed (excluding Applied Studies) at DAIS are calculated into an overall GPA. GPA is based on a 4.0 scale.

Mathematics

Mathematics courses emphasize critical thinking beyond computation and are aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics. The Mathematics program follows the accelerated standards progression provided by CCSS as its designed to provided students with the greatest access to and success within either of three Advanced Placement (AP) courses offered within the department.

Subject Grade Subject Grade
Algebra 8 Advanced Topics and Introduction to Calculus “ATIC” 11 – 12
Geometry 9 AP Statistics 11 – 12
Advanced Algebra 10 AP Calculus AB 11 – 12
Pre-Calculus with an Introduction to Statistics 11 – 12 AP Calculus BC 11 – 12

Science

Science courses are subject specific and are aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards. Science courses emphasize laboratory skills, modeling, scientific inquiry, and data analysis as they explore different scientific fields. The progression of courses is designed to ensure access to and success within any of the four Advanced Placement (AP) courses offered within the department.

Course Grades Course Grades
Physical Science 9 AP Psychology 11 – 12
Life Science 10 AP Chemistry 11 – 12
Environmental Science 11 – 12 AP Biology 11 – 12
Physics 10 – 12 AP Physics 1: Algebra-based 11 – 12
Psychology 11 – 12 AP Physics C: Mechanics 11 – 12
Pre-AP Science 10 – 12

Social Studies

Social Studies courses are skills-based, aligned to the historical thinking skills standards delineated by the National Council for History in the Schools (NCHS). Social Studies courses are connected by time periods to correlating English Language Arts courses. The Social Studies department offers a robust offering of Advanced Placement (AP) courses from grades 9-12.

Course Grades Course Grades
Ancient World Studies 9 AP Human Geography 9 – 12
Modern World Studies 10 AP World History 10 – 12
Introduction to Economics and Finance 10 – 12 AP Macro-Economics 10 – 12
Asian Studies 11 – 12 AP Micro-Economics 10 – 12
United States History 11 – 12 AP US History 11 – 12
Psychology 11 – 12

Visual Arts

Visual Arts courses are aligned to the National Standards for the Arts. Visual arts standards and provide opportunities for students to develop as artists in a variety of mediums. Visual Arts students showcase their art in the annual Art Show held each spring. The progression of courses is designed to provide access to and success in the Advanced Placement (AP) Studio Art course.

Course Grades Course Grades
Foundation Art 9 – 12 3D Art and Design 10 – 12
Digital Photography 10 – 12 Pre-AP Studio Art 11 – 12
Introduction to Design 10 – 12 AP Studio Art 11 – 12
2D Art and Design 10 – 12

Music

Music courses are aligned to the National Standards for the Arts music standards and provide students the opportunity to specialize in instrumental or choral music. Music students perform in at least one public concert each semester with more opportunities for public performance growing each year. The progression of courses is designed to provide access to and success in the Advanced Placement (AP) Music Theory course.

Course Grades Course Grades
Chorus 9 – 12 Advanced Band 9 – 12
Chorus for Musical Theater 9 – 12 Guitar 10 – 12
Advanced Chorus 10 – 12 Foundations of Music 9 – 12
Beginning Band 9 – 12 AP Music Theory 10 – 12
Developing Band 9 – 12

English Language Arts

English Language Arts courses are skills-based vs texts-based, are connected by time periods to correlating Social Studies courses, and are aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English Language Arts. All English courses develop students’ skills of reading, writing, speaking, and critical thinking through literary and/or non-fiction texts. The progression of courses is designed to ensure access to and success within either of the two Advanced Placement (AP) English courses offered.

Course Grades Course Grades
Ancient World Literature 9 American Literature 12
Modern World Literature 10 Advanced Placement English Language and Composition 10 – 12
Asian Literature 11 Literature 11 – 12
Electives:
Course Grades Course Grades
Film Studies 10 – 12 Speech 10 – 12
Creative Writing 10 – 12 Journalism 10 – 12

World Languages

World Language courses are aligned to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages focusing on the five “C”s of language learning: Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities. Tapping into the local community and environment, students in World Language courses get to apply their language skills in the real world on a regular basis as well as being prepared for the Advanced Placement (AP) Chinese Language and Culture course.

Course Grades Course Grades
HS Chinese Foundation 9 – 12 HS Chinese Advanced 9 – 12
HS Chinese Foundation High 9 – 12 HS Chinese Advanced High 9 – 12
HS Chinese Intermediate 9 – 12 AP Chinese Language and Culture 9 – 12

Health & Physical Education

Physical Education courses are aligned to the Society for Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) National Standards for K-12 Physical Education and Health Education. In addition to completing the credit requirement for Physical Education, all students are required to complete one semester-long Health Education course.

Course Grades Course Grades
Team Sports 9 – 12 Outdoor Education 10 – 12
Lifelong Fitness 9 – 12 Health Education 10 – 12

Applied Studies

Applied Studies courses are project-based and culminate in a showcased project that impacts the school community. Students may repeat Applied Studies courses multiple times.

Course Grades Course Grades
Model United Nations “MUN” 9 – 12 Drama 9 – 12
Yearbook 9 – 12 Drama for Musical Theater 9 – 12
Business 9 – 12 Engineering and Product Design 9 – 12
Government 9 – 12 Video Production 9 – 12
Environment 9 – 12 Coding and Digital Project Management 9 – 12