What I should do with Language courses

Hi all,

I am an upcoming sophomore and I attend an international school. I have a few questions on language courses. I took Chinese Intermediate High when I in 9th grade, and for this upcoming school year (10th grade), I decided to drop Chinese because I am native to Chinese and grew up speaking it so I didn’t really see the need to continue it.
I already meet the language requirement to graduate, but I wish to continue taking language courses. For 10th grade, I have no language courses scheduled because I don’t have any space for it in my schedule. Do you think it is okay if I take an online language course? If so, should I continue Chinese or should I start learning another language, like Spanish? My school doesn’t award credit for courses students take online, so I am not really sure what to do. How would it affect my college chances if I only took one year of language in school (not online)? Please give some advice as to what I should do.

Thank you all!

Depending on future plans and level of colleges you are targeting, one year of FL in HS may be problematic. The recommend HS preparation for selective colleges almost always exceeds graduation requirements. Personally, I’d take another year of Chinese. Starting Spanish is not really a valid option unless you plan to take it for a few years.

Many Colleges require 2 yrs of FL with some up to 4 yrs FL.
I would recommend continuing your FL. Online is fine as long as its accredited.
I would look at Dual Enrollment if your school offers it and take a language (Chinese) online through DE

I would look at it from a broader perspective than just meeting admission officers’ expectations. If you are already fluent in Chinese, I don’t have to convince you about the real-life benefits of foreign languages.
One possible course of action: take the Chinese AP exam on your own in your sophomore year (you don’t need to study much for this one, do you?), and take your Spanish classes in your junior and senior years, hopefully starting at a higher level than the beginner, after a solid year of self-study, or perhaps some lessons (D had an excellent private online teacher for $15/hr).
One more thing: the number of years of foreign language required/expected by colleges assumes you start from zero. Nobody held it against my D that she had only 3 years of foreign languages (2 different ones). She tested high enough for French 3 and then AP, and for Spanish AP, and was done by the end of her sophomore year. But you know what could be problematic for a very competitive place? You just not bothering with any other language, resting on your laurels of Chinese fluency, so to speak.

What level is “Chinese Intermediate High”? I.e. is it equivalent to the 3rd or 4th year high school course for a student who started from the beginner course, or some other level?

Do you have equivalent reading and writing skills as well as speaking and listening skills? If not, you may still gain some useful knowledge and skill from additional Chinese courses, though it would be better if heritage speaker versions were available.