Language Placement, Testing, and Transfer Credit

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Placement, Testing, and Transfer Credit


***IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT AS OF MARCH 24, 2020***

Due to COVID-19 and current OSU protocols regarding on-campus presence, the testing center in Hagerty Hall 120 is currently closed and in-person proctoring is not available:

  • EM Testing: Testing coordinators and Language Program directors are working to find a solution that will make Spanish/Portuguese placement testing and Spanish/Portuguese EM testing available to students as soon as possible. We will post any updates on our website.
  • MultiCAT: Questions regarding the Spanish MultiCAT placement exam? Contact Estephanie Ortiz (ortiz.115@osu.edu) of the CLLC.
  • Portuguese Placement: Questions regarding the Portuguese Placement exam or the Spanish/Portuguese EM tests? Contact Dr. Richard Henricksen (henricksen.6@osu.edu) of SPPO.

Students wishing to enroll in Spanish or Portuguese courses have several pathways for appropriate placement. This page provides information on departmental exams, such as the MultiCAT Placement Exam and Examination Mark (EM) Tests, nationally recognized academic programming and testing measures, including Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), and the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), as well as Transfer Credit. 

The Center for Languages Literatures and Cultures (CLLC) and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese do not currently provide a MultiCAT for Portuguese. For information about placement into Portuguese 1101, 1102, or 1103, please contact Dr. Richard Henricksen.

The Department offers a Graduate Reading Proficiency Exam in Spanish or Portuguese for OSU graduate students wishing to demonstrate reading language proficiency in their area of specialization. The exam is designed for students not enrolled in the Spanish graduate program of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese. 

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MultiCAT Placement for Spanish

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  • The Spanish Multimedia Computer Adaptive Test (MultiCAT) is a computerized placement test usually taken during freshman orientation.
  • Students are placed into SPAN 1101 - 2202 depending on years of high school Spanish study and the MultiCAT score.
  • Students with any college Spanish credit are not eligible to take this exam.
  • Students who have studied less than 1 year of high school Spanish are not required to take this exam.
  • This exam may be taken only once.
  • Native speakers are not eligible. A Spanish Heritage Learner (SHL) Placement Exam is available for those who self-identify as Heritage Speakers.

A picture I.D. is required to take the exam. The MultiCAT is available on Monday-Friday from 8:30 AM-4:00 PM in Hagerty Hall room 120 during the semester. No appointment is required. If you have questions, please call the Center for Languages, Literatures and Cultures (614-292-4361) and/or see our Language Placement Testing site.

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Who must take the MultiCAT placement test?

All students who have studied Spanish for more than 1 year in middle or high school or have used Spanish to fulfill the OSU admissions requirement, and who do not have any previous Spanish credit at The Ohio State University or another university/college, must take the MultiCAT (Multimedia Computer Adaptive Test). See information on the Spanish Heritage Learner (SHL) Placement Exam if you self-identify as a Spanish Heritage speaker.

Who is not required to take the MultiCAT?

  • Students who have been out of high school for over five years and who have had no practice with Spanish in the meantime. These students may enroll in Spanish 1101.
  • Students who have less than 1 year of high school Spanish.
  • Students who identify as Heritage Speakers and who elect to take the Spanish Heritage Learner (SHL) Placement Exam.

Who is ineligible to take the MultiCAT?

  • Students who completed high school in a Spanish-speaking country.
  • Students who have already taken the MultiCAT. 
  • Transfer students who took Spanish courses at another university. 
  • Students who have credit for a previous Spanish course at OSU. These students should enroll in the next course in the sequence.
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Placement in a Spanish course is based on the number of years of High School Spanish study and the MultiCAT score. If you do not remember your MultiCAT score, contact the Center for Languages, Literatures and Cultures, 100 Hagerty Hall, (614) 292-4361. 

1-2 Years of High School Study

  • A score between 0 - 20.5 places into Spanish 1101
  • A score between 20.6 - 25.5 places into Spanish 1102
  • A score between 25.6 - 29.5 places into Spanish 1103
  • A score between 29.6 - 32+  places into Spanish 2202

3+ Years of High School Study

  • A score between 0 - 20.5 places into Spanish 1155
  • A score between 20.6 - 25.5 places into Spanish 1102
  • A score between 25.6 - 29.5 places into Spanish 1103
  • A score between 29.6 - 32+ places into Spanish 2202

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese follows the MultiCAT placement scale strictly for placing students. However, if you believe that you have been placed incorrectly or have a placement question, please contact Dr. Holly NibertMegan Lobert, and/or Dr. Richard Henricksen

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Spanish Heritage Learner (SHL) Placement for Spanish

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  • The Spanish Heritage Learner (SHL) exam is a computerized placement test usually taken during freshman orientation. More information about this exam can be found on the AVANT website
  • The exam is for students who self-identify as a heritage learner of Spanish. In the state of Ohio, heritage learner is defined as someone who grew up speaking Spanish in the home/community but graduated from a High School in the U.S.
  • Students are placed into SPAN 1155, SPAN 1113/1103, SPAN 2213/2202 or SPAN 3413/3403, 3401 and/or 3404
  • Students with any college Spanish credit or currently enrolled in a Spanish course are not eligible to take this exam.
  • This exam may be taken only once.
  • Native speakers are not eligible.

A picture I.D. is required to take the exam. The SHL is available on Monday-Friday from 9:00 AM - 3:30pm in 120 HH during the spring and fall semester. No appointment is required, but you should discuss your desire to take the SHL exam with the receptionist so that they can set you up for the correct exam. If you have questions, please call the Center for Languages, Literatures and Cultures (614-292-4361) and/or see our Language Placement Testing site.

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Who is eligible to take the SHL placement test?

All students who identify as Heritage Speakers of Spanish and who do not have any previous Spanish credit at The Ohio State University or another university/college, can take the SHL exam. Students who identify as Heritage Speakers can also elect to take the MultiCAT exam, but should follow the placement pathway provided by whichever exam they elect to take.

Who is ineligible to take the SHL?

  • Students who completed high school in a Spanish-speaking country.
  • Transfer students who took Spanish courses at another university.
  • Students who have credit for a previous Spanish course at OSU. These students should enroll in the next course in the sequence.
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Placement in a Spanish course is based on the SHL score. If you do not remember your SHL score, contact the Center for Languages, Literatures and Cultures, 100 Hagerty Hall, (614) 292-4361.

  • Level 1: take the MultiCAT or schedule SPAN 1155
  • Level 2-3: SPAN 1113 / 1103
  • Level 4-5: SPAN 2213 / 2202
  • Level 6-7: SPAN 3413 (or SPAN 3401, 3403 and/or 3404)

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese follows the SHL placement scale strictly for placing students. However, if you believe that you have been placed too low or too high or have a placement question, please contact Dr. Holly NibertMegan Lobertand/or Dr. Richard Henricksen.

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Examination Mark (EM) Testing for Spanish and Portuguese

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Credit by Exam is a university-wide program that allows currently enrolled undergraduates at The Ohio State University to earn credit toward graduation upon successful completion of specific content-based exams. The Department of Spanish and Portuguese (SPPO) offers EM tests in SPAN 1101, 1102, 1155, 1103, 2202, and PORT 1101, 1102, and 1103.

  • Written exams that allow students to improve their MultiCAT placement for 1101 to 2202.
  • A student is eligible to take an EM test only for the level for which they are currently placed.
  • The EM tests for each course level may be taken only once. No exceptions.
  • A minimum score of 80% is required to earn EM credit.
  • Exam sessions are offered at the beginning and end of autumn and spring semesters and at the beginning of summer terms. Registration 24 hours in advance of a session is required. 
  • Fee: $60 (If cash, please bring exact change. Check or money order payable to: The Ohio State University. This fee is due the day of the exam.)

Any credit(s) earned through Spanish and Portuguese EM tests appears as "EM" credit on official transcripts and does not affect a student's GPA.

For more information regarding eligibility, exam content, testing schedules, please see below.  

Disability Services and Testing Accommodations 

Students registered with the Office of Student Life Disability Services (SLDS) should contact Dr. Richard Henricksen (henricksen.6@osu.edu) as soon as possible to discuss accommodations for the EMs. 

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Non-native Spanish-speaking students may seek credit by exam for SPAN 1101, 1102, 1155, 1103, 2202, and PORT 1101, 1102, and 1103. Typically, Spanish and Portuguese EM tests are taken after a student has received a placement score for the desired language and/or after transfer credit has been posted. For information regarding Spanish placement, go to the Spanish Multimedia Computer Adaptive Test (MultiCAT) section of this webpage. For information regarding Portuguese placement, please email Dr. Richard Henricksen for details. A student is eligible to take an EM test only for the level for which they are currently placed. In other words, if a student is currently placed in SPAN 1101, they may only register for the SPAN 1101 EM test. If a score of 80% or higher is achieved on the test, the student earns credit for the level and is then eligible to register for the course at the next level or take the next level EM. 


A student is ineligible to sit for a Spanish or Portuguese course's EM test if they have...

  • received transfer credit for the course; 
  • received a mark or a withdrawal (W) at OSU for the course;
  • received a failing grade for the course. 

In addition, a student is ineligible to take a Spanish or Portuguese EM test for courses that are prerequisites to those for which college credit has been earned. Also, please note that a student may not repeat a Spanish or Portuguese EM test for any reason. If you have any doubts or questions about your eligibility to sit for a Spanish or Portuguese EM test, please contact Dr. Richard Henricksen

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All Spanish and Portuguese EM tests include the following six (6) sections:

  • Listening comprehension
  • Vocabulary
  • Grammar
  • Culture
  • Reading comprehension
  • Writing

The content included in each test is related to the specific chapters covered in the course levels' textbook.

Each course-level Spanish EM exam is designed using the following textbooks and chapters:

  • SPAN 1101: Chapters 1-4 (¡Arriba!, 7th edition) 
  • SPAN 1102: Chapters 5-8 (¡Arriba!, 7th edition)
  • SPAN 1155: Chapters 1-8 (¡Arriba!, 7th edition)
  • SPAN 1103: Chapters 9-12 (¡Arriba!, 7th, edition)
  • SPAN 2202: Chapters 4-6 (Día a día, 2nd edition)

Each course-level Portuguese EM exam is designed using the following textbooks and chapters:

  • PORT 1101: Chapters Preliminar-3 (Ponto de encontro, 2nd edition)
  • PORT 1102: Chapters 4-7 (Ponto de encontro, 2nd edition)
  • PORT 1103: Chapters 8-11 (Ponto de encontro, 2nd edition)
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Required Materials

On the day of the exam, a student must bring...

  • a valid photo ID (e.g., driver's license, BuckID, passport)
  • a pen and/or pencil
  • headphones/earphones
  • exact cash, check, or money order for $60 (further details are available below)

Note: Failure to bring a valid photo ID, writing utensils, headphones/earphones, and an acceptable form of payment to the testing session results in automatic dismissal, and the student will be required to reschedule. 


Prohibited Materials

On the day of the exam, a student may not use any external resources which include but are not limited to...

  • dictionaries
  • books
  • notes
  • cellphones
  • laptops
  • tablets
  • smart watches

These items are strictly prohibited during all testing sessions. Any suspicion of Academic Misconduct will be reported to the university's Committee on Academic Misconduct (COAM) for further investigation. 

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The Department of Spanish and Portuguese administers the EM tests during pre-established test sessions at the beginning and end of autumn and spring semesters and at the beginning of summer terms. The department does not schedule personal appointments for EM tests. It is critical to arrive on time to the session. If a student arrives beyond the first ten minutes of a session, they will not be permitted to take the exam at that session and they will be required to re-register for another day and/or time. 

The upcoming Spanish and Portuguese EM testing dates and registration deadlines are:

SP20 & SU20 Sessions

  • Tuesday, April. 21, from 10AM-12PM. Location: 277 Hagerty Hall.
    • Registration deadline: Monday, April 20, 12PM.
  • Monday, May 4, from 1-3PM. Location: 277 Hagerty Hall.
    • Registration deadline: Friday, May 1, 3PM.
  • Tuesday, May 5, from 10AM-12PM. Location: 277 Hagerty Hall.
    • Registration deadline: Monday, May 4, 12PM.
  • Monday, June 15, from 1-3PM. Location: 277 Hagerty Hall.
    • Registration deadline: Friday, June 12, 5PM.

AU20 Sessions:

  • Friday, Aug. 21, from 10AM-12PM. Location: 277 Hagerty Hall.
    • Registration deadline: Thursday, Aug. 20, 12PM.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 26, from 3-5PM. Location: TBD.
    • Registration deadline: Tuesday, Aug. 25, 5PM.
  • Thursday, Aug. 27, from 10AM-12PM. Location: TBD.
    • Registration deadline: Wednesday, Aug. 26, 12PM.
  • Thursday, Aug. 27, from 3-5PM. Location: TBD.
    • Registration deadline: Wednesday, Aug. 27, 5PM.
  • Friday, Aug. 28, from 9-11AM. Location: TBD.
    • Registration deadline: Thursday, Aug. 27, 11AM.
  • Friday, Aug. 28, from 1-3PM. Location: TBD.
    • Registration deadline: Thursday, Aug. 27, 3PM.
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Registration

A student who wishes to take a Spanish or Portuguese EM test must register online at least 24 hours in advance of the testing session. As stated above, a student is eligible to register only for the level in which they are currently placed. It is important to note that a student is not officially registered for an EM test until they receive a confirmation from henricksen.6@osu.edu. Lastly, an email confirming (or denying) a student's EM test registration request will be sent only to OSU email accounts. 

Please click on the Registration Form to register.


Fee

The administration fee for the Spanish and Portuguese EM test is $60 per test, and payment is accepted via cash, check, or money order. Credit/debit cards are NOT accepted. [Note: If a student wishes to pay in cash, they must bring the exact amount as the proctor does not carry any change]. All checks and money orders should be made payable to The Ohio State University. This fee is due at the beginning of the test session. A student who does not bring an accepted form of payment will not be permitted to sit for that session and is required to register for a later date. Absolutely no exceptions. 

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In order to gain credit by exam, students must achieve a minimum score of 80% on the test. 

Students will be informed of the results promptly via email. If a student earns an 80% or higher, the Spanish and Portuguese EM testing coordinator, Dr. Richard Henricksen, will complete and submit an EM credit request to the student's college office for review. Once approved by the college, the request will then be submitted to the Office of the Registrar for official posting to a student's transcript. The posting process currently takes four to six weeks from the date the Registrar receives the EM request. Students earning credits for EMs can forward the email from the testing coordinator to their Academic Advisor for permission to enroll in subsequent courses pending Registrar's posting.

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AP, IB, CLEP, and Transfer Credit

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The Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) programs approved for Spanish EM credit at OSU are listed below. Students who desire to earn EM credit through Advanced Placement or IB must have their official score reports sent to the Admissions Office, SAS Building, 281 W. Lane Ave, Columbus, OH 43210. Contact AP at 1-888-225-5427 or IB at 1-301-202-3121 to designate Ohio State University as an official score recipient.

AP Score Credit 

  • Score of 3 receives 8 credit hours (Spanish 1101 and 1102) = Enrollment in Spanish 1103
  • Score of 4 or 5 receives 15 credit hours (Spanish 1101, 1102, 1103 and 2202) = Enrollment in Spanish 3401, 3403, and/or 3404

IB (High Level or HL) Score Credit 

  • Spanish A: Language & Literature score of 5 receives 8 credit hours (Spanish 1101 & 1102) = Enrollment in Spanish 1103
  • Spanish A: Literature and Culture OR Spanish A: Literature OR Spanish B score of 6 or 7 receives 12 credit hours (Spanish 1101, 1102, and 1103) = Enrollment in Spanish 2202
  • IB Standard Level scores not accepted for credit.

Visit the Prior Learning Assessment webpages at the University Registrar for more information about AP and IB Tests, scores, and credit awarded

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The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests are computer based tests administered in the Office of Testing at Ohio State University. For information about registration, fees, and credit posting, visit the Prior Learning Assessment webpages at the University Registrar - CLEP.

Course CLEP Required

  • Score of 56-62, Level 1, receives 8 credit hours (Spanish 1101 and 1102) = Enrollment in Spanish 1103
  • Score of 63-67, Level 2, receives 12 credit hours (Spanish 1101, 1102, and 1103) = Enrollment in Spanish 2202
  • Score of 68+, Level 3, receives 15 credit hours (Spanish 1101, 1102, 1103, and 2202) = Enrollment in Spanish 3401, 3403 and/or 3404
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A transfer student is one who has completed undergraduate coursework at an accredited university or college other than Ohio State (international or domestic), and who has transferred to an OSU degree program.

  • To initiate the process, send your Official Transcripts to the OSU Transfer Credit Center, Office of the University Registrar
  • Transfer credit is course credit granted by coordinators in the Transfer Credit Center, Office of the University Registrar. Transfer credit for specific courses may be assigned automatically by Registrar-level credit coordinators upon admission, when equivalent courses have already been articulated.
  • Students may also receive general/unspecified transfer credit for completed courses. In these cases: 
    • Students contact Rachel Sanabria, Academic Program Manager, to request evaluation
    • Use your OSU email, and provide your OSU Student ID# and University (including specific campus location)
    • Syllabus for each course for which general or specific transfer credit has been granted (electronic, scanned or faxed versions are fine.) Course descriptions from course offerings catalogues are not sufficient. Where syllabi are not available, textbooks, notes and papers from relevant courses may be used for the evaluation at the discretion of the credit coordinator.
  • For further information, contact the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at (614) 292-4958.

NOTE: It is the student's responsibility to provide all required and requested information to facilitate the transfer credit evaluation process. Transfer credit requests will remain pending until all required or requested information and documentation has been provided.