Information about the Foreign Language Requirement
Take Foreign Language Early
It is important for students to fulfill their foreign language requirement their freshman year, while their skills are still fresh. Placement scores cannot subsequently be lowered, and students may not take classes below their placement level, so postponing study may make it difficult for students to successfully complete the course. All students should complete the foreign language requirement by the end of their sophomore year at the latest. Please note that beginning level language classes in Chinese, Japanese, and Russian are not offered Spring semester, so those starting a new language are advised to do so in the fall.
Does the Placement exam fulfill the F requirement?
The purpose of the foreign language placement exam is to determine which level of foreign language study is best suited to a particular student’s skill level. Placement exams are not designed to determine competency, and do not give credit nor satisfy the competency requirement. By completing a placement exam, students do not “test out” of the language requirement.
Who needs to take a placement exam?
All incoming students received a notice to complete a foreign language exam when they were issued an e-mail account at Wittenberg. New students were instructed to access Moodle and take a foreign language placement exam in the language they studied in high school. French, German, and Spanish placement exams are completed on-line and submitted electronically. Chinese, Japanese, and Russian exams are printed out at home by the students, completed, and mailed to the University prior to their arrival on campus. Please note that, while students must test in the language studied in high school, they are not required to continue with that language study and are free to begin a new language. If a placement exam has been completed but the student wishes to begin a new language, the student will enroll in a new language at the 111 level.
Who does not need to take a placement exam?
Students who have not studied Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, or Spanish at the high school level or higher do not need to take a placement exam. The registrar will assign them a placement of “Any 111,” which means that they are eligible to take a beginning level class in any of our languages.
There is no placement exam for Latin. Students whose only language background is Latin should not take any placement exam. Doing so could result in an erroneous placement into the workshop. Latin no longer will satisfy the General Education Foreign Language (F) requirement for graduation, and is not being offered next year. Should Latin be offered again in the future, it will not satisfy the Foreign Language requirement.
What if I don’t take the placement exam?
Students who have studied Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, or Spanish at the high school level or higher must take a placement exam in order to register for any language class. Those who have no such language background need do nothing. They are eligible to enroll in any language 111 class.
What if my placement is a language workshop?
Students who have had formal study but whose skills are insufficient for a 112 class will be given a placement of “Workshop”. These students will do remedial work in the Foreign Language Learning Center in Room 232 Hollenbeck Hall to improve their skills for a 112 level placement. Alternatively, such students may enter any other language 111 class. As of fall 2008, students who need to brush up on their Spanish skills before being permitted to take Spanish 112 may also register for a half-semester course, Spanish 101. Only students placing into Spanish Workshop or Spanish 101 may take Spanish 101. This course is offered only in the fall and is available only for Spanish.
Does placement guarantee a class?
Placement exams do not guarantee students a space in a given class; Spanish classes close quickly, so students who get closed out should consider taking a different language.
We will offer one placement session during New Student Days on Friday, August 22 from 8:00 to 9:30 a.m. for those students who have not yet taken the placement exam. Students should report to the Department on the second floor of Hollenbeck.
Students may satisfy the General Education Foreign Language “F” requirement in the following ways:
- Complete a foreign language 112, 150, or 200-level class taught in the language (depending on the language and placement) with a C- or higher;
- Pass the Competency Exam in a foreign language. Only students with a 200 level placement or higher should consider this option;
- Or score a 4 or a 5 on an AP exam in the language.