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.

SubjectGradeSubjectGrade
Algebra8Advanced Topics and Introduction to Calculus “ATIC”11 – 12
Geometry9AP Statistics11 – 12
Advanced Algebra10AP Calculus AB11 – 12
Pre-Calculus with an Introduction to Statistics11 – 12AP Calculus BC11 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Physical Science9AP Psychology11 – 12
Life Science10AP Chemistry11 – 12
Environmental Science11 – 12AP Biology11 – 12
Physics10 – 12AP Physics 1: Algebra-based11 – 12
Psychology11 – 12AP Physics C: Mechanics11 – 12
Pre-AP Science10 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Ancient World Studies9AP Human Geography9 – 12
Modern World Studies10AP World History10 – 12
Introduction to Economics and Finance10 – 12AP Macro-Economics10 – 12
Asian Studies11 – 12AP Micro-Economics10 – 12
United States History11 – 12AP US History11 – 12
Psychology11 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Foundation Art9 – 123D Art and Design10 – 12
Digital Photography10 – 12Pre-AP Studio Art11 – 12
Introduction to Design10 – 12AP Studio Art11 – 12
2D Art and Design10 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Chorus9 – 12Advanced Band9 – 12
Chorus for Musical Theater9 – 12Guitar10 – 12
Advanced Chorus10 – 12Foundations of Music9 – 12
Beginning Band9 – 12AP Music Theory10 – 12
Developing Band9 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Ancient World Literature9American Literature12
Modern World Literature10Advanced Placement English Language and Composition10 – 12
Asian Literature11Literature11 – 12
Electives:
CourseGradesCourseGrades
Film Studies10 – 12Speech10 – 12
Creative Writing10 – 12Journalism10 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
HS Chinese Foundation9 – 12HS Chinese Advanced9 – 12
HS Chinese Foundation High9 – 12HS Chinese Advanced High9 – 12
HS Chinese Intermediate9 – 12AP Chinese Language and Culture9 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Team Sports9 – 12Outdoor Education10 – 12
Lifelong Fitness9 – 12Health Education10 – 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.

CourseGradesCourseGrades
Model United Nations “MUN”9 – 12Drama9 – 12
Yearbook9 – 12Drama for Musical Theater9 – 12
Business9 – 12Engineering and Product Design9 – 12
Government9 – 12Video Production9 – 12
Environment9 – 12Coding and Digital Project Management9 – 12