Foreign Language Placement Testing

Students who wish to study Spanish at Western Michigan University for the first time should enroll in SPAN 1000-Basic Spanish I.

Online placement exam

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. 

To take the Online Placement Exam, you need:

  • Your WIN—Western Identification Number (not your Social Security Number).

Native speakers and transfer students

Native speakers are not required to take the online exam. They should consult a Spanish academic 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 consult a Spanish academic advisor to ascertain the WMU equivalent for the courses taken at the other institution and then enroll in the next course in the sequence.

Monitored test-out exam

A monitored test-out exam or proficiency exam (different from the online placement exam) may be taken by students with ample experience with the Spanish language, such as those who have lived abroad for an extended period of time or those who have participated in Spanish immersion programs. The exam is a way 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. Prior to taking the proficiency or test-out exam, students must meet with a Spanish academic advisor to determine whether they qualify.

Other languages

For placement in languages other than French, German and Spanish, contact the Department of World Languages and Literatures.