World Languages Credit for Competency/Proficiency
For purposes of this procedure, a world language is defined according to the definition used by the Higher Education Coordinating Board as “[a]ny natural language that has been formally studied […], including American Sign Language (AMESLAN, the language of the deaf community), and languages no longer spoken, such as Latin and ancient Greek. However, neither computer ‘languages’ nor forms of deaf signing aside from AMESLAN are acceptable.”
B. Demonstrating Competency/Proficiency in a World Language
The district will manage the assessment process so that students seeking competency based credit can demonstrate competency/proficiency across language skills. Assessments will be aligned to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines in order to ensure consistency across languages. The district will select the appropriate assessment instrument(s) from the following:
- Standards-based Measurement of Proficiency (STAMP) in reading, writing, and speaking (and listening, if available) for all languages for which it is available (as of 2011, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Chinese). STAMP is offered by Avant Assessment (http://avantassessment.com).
- American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) assessments Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) or Oral Proficiency Interview Computer Based (OPIc) and Writing Proficiency Test (WPT) — for languages for which STAMP is not available or for which ACTFL assessments are deemed to be more appropriate. ACTFL assessments are offered through Language Testing International (http://www.languagetesting.com).
- Appropriate assessments for American Sign Language such as the Sign Language Proficiency Interview (SLPI).
- For languages that do not currently have any other nationally available proficiency-based assessment, the district will work with local language communities and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) World Languages Program to develop a collection of evidence process, such as LinguaFolio, that is aligned with ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines.
C. Determining Competency and Credit Equivalencies
The district will award one or more credits based on the student demonstrating an overall proficiency level according to the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines as follows:
- Novice Mid – 1 credit (Carnegie Unit)
- Novice High – 2 credits
- Intermediate Low – 3 credits
- Intermediate Mid – 4 credits
Since students may demonstrate varied levels of proficiency across skills, credits will be awarded based on the lowest common level of proficiency demonstrated across the skill areas.
(Example: If a student demonstrated Intermediate mid-level proficiency in Speaking, but Novice Mid in Reading and Writing, then credits would be awarded based on the lowest common level of demonstrated proficiency: one credit for Novice Mid. The student would not receive individual credits for separate language skills. In this example, the student would not receive four credits for Intermediate Mid in Speaking and one credit each for Novice Mid in Reading and Writing. The total award is one World Language credit.)
D. Offering Testing Opportunities
The district will manage the assessment process so that students have multiple opportunities to take or retake the assessment(s) required to demonstrate proficiency. Assessments must be offered in a proctored setting with appropriate technology. The district will approve the site(s) where the assessments are offered, which could include individual schools, district buildings, community colleges, universities, educational service districts, or other community settings.
E. Paying for Assessments
Students who are native speakers of languages other than English have their testing fees covered by the district. Whether a student is a native speaker of a given language is determined by the information recorded on the student’s Home Language Survey.
Fees may vary depending on the assessment costs.
F. Reporting Results
The district will receive official test results for each student participating in the assessment process. The district will provide a letter to the student with a copy of the test results and an indication of how many world language credits, if any, may be awarded. If requested by the student, the school counselors will record the world language credits earned on the official transcript. Credits will be awarded with a grade of “Pass.”