The sample policy and procedure recommend that districts identify nationally-available proficiency assessments to administer as the basis for awarding credit for proficiency. This is the most cost-effective, fair, and consistent way to make decisions about proficiency. See also the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction's (OSPI) World Languages Competency-based Credit website for systematic guidance on testing, including OSPI-approved testing agencies and the languages those agencies assess.
In general, proficiency assessments should be aligned to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines. ACTFL uses a proficiency scale from Novice (low, mid, high) to Intermediate (low, mid, high) to Advanced (low, mid, high), Superior, and Distinguished. Most K?2 language learners perform at the Novice or Intermediate level depending on the time (years) and intensity (types of program delivery) of their study. Students who are native or heritage speakers or have attended K?2 immersion programs may reach the ACTFL Advanced level by graduation in some skills.
The Standards-based Measurement of Proficiency (STAMP), developed at the Center for Applied Second Language Studies (CASLS) at the University of Oregon and offered to schools and districts through Avant Assessment, is an example of a nationally-available standards-based assessment. STAMP and WorldSpeak offer tests for the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, Tagalog (Filipino), and Vietnamese. For other languages, there are a number of nationally-recognized assessments; such as the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and Writing Proficiency Test (WPT) offered through Language Testing International. Additional assessment options are also available, such as ALTA Language Testing and the American Sign Language Proficiency Interview (ASLPI). For the most current list, see OSPI's World Languages Competency Testing and Credits website.