Students who wish to study Spanish for the first time should enroll in SPAN 1000-Basic Spanish I. Those students who have had some contact with the language, either through high school coursework or through other experiences, must take the Spanish online placement test found within the GoWMU portal. They should register according to their test results. Students will need a Bronco NetID and password to enter the GoWMU portal and will be asked to give their WIN (Western identification number) to take the placement exam.
The online placement exam is available in French, German and Spanish. It is designed to help students determine which WMU language course is appropriate for their level of preparedness. The online exam can only be taken once and cannot be used to satisfy any foreign language requirement nor are any credits awarded on the basis of the online exam. Thus, accepting help of any kind, for instance consulting a dictionary or another person, would not prove helpful in the end. Instead, such assistance could result in a course placement beyond the student's readiness.
The online placement exam presents questions of different ability levels, adapting the next questions level according to the previous answer. The total number of questions in the exam and the duration of the exam may vary, but it usually takes 20-30 minutes to finish.
When the online placement exam is complete, it indicates an overall score and the corresponding WMU course in which to register. For example, a score of 256 on the test might indicate a placement of 1010, meaning SPAN 1010-Basic Spanish II. The online system resets every night, so you may have to wait until the next day to register yourself for the course.
The online test results are also available to Spanish advisors. Contact an advisor with any questions regarding placement.
Native speakers are not required to take the online exam. They should consult a Spanish advisor to determine an appropriate first class for their foreign language studies at WMU. Likewise, the exam is not required for transfer students who have successfully completed Spanish courses at a community college or another four-year college. They should ascertain the WMU equivalent for the courses taken at the other institution and then enroll in the next course in the sequence. A Spanish advisor can help determine the next course. Students who are uncertain about which course to take can contact the Department of Spanish at 269 387-3023.
A monitored examination (different from the online placement exam) may be taken by students who wish to try to place out of the foreign language requirements that exist for majors or minors in certain programs at WMU or for all students in the College of Arts and Sciences. The monitored exam may be taken only once and must be taken before students begin their first class in that language at WMU. Click here for more information regarding this exam.
For placement in languages other than French, German and Spanish, contact the Department of World Languages and Literatures, 410 Sprau Tower, 269-387-3001.