Spanish Exemption Exam


The Spanish Exemption Test is offered to students as an alternative means for satisfying the Language Other Than English General Education requirement (Category VI) and a portion of the International/Global Issues (Category VIII) requirements. You should take this test if you have a strong background in Spanish and you are not interested in taking additional course work. 

The highest proficiency level attainable at UCI by taking the Spanish Exemption exam is 2A.

If you are an International Studies major, this exemption exam cannot satisfy the 2B level foreign language requirement.

This test is not a placement test. Click here for information to enroll in a Spanish course at UCI.

This test may be taken only once. No University credit is given. There is no fee to take this test if you are a UCI student. 


This exam consists of two parts.
Part I is a three-hour written examination divided as follows:

    1. Vocabulary/grammar (multiple-choice) - 90 minutes
    2. Listening (multiple/choice) - 20 minutes
    3. Writing (short answer and 3/4 page essay in Spanish) - one-hour

Part II is a 15-minute oral exam with a faculty member of the Spanish Department for those who pass Part I.
This exam was developed by the Spanish Department to cover topics normally learned in the Spanish 1C/2A courses at UCI. Topics on the test may include:

  • Para/por, saber/conocer, ser/estar
  • Verb tenses and mood
  • Vocabulary
  • Commands-formal and informal
  • Comparisons
  • Pronouns
  • Reading and listening comprehension


The Spanish Exemption Exam is designed for students who have strong preparation in Spanish (two, three, or four years in secondary school or the equivalent). Since the test closely matches the curriculum, the best preparation is to review the topics found in the first-year of Spanish textbook.


Click HERE for the exam sample items.


The Spanish Test will be administered during the academic year only. Registration, required to take the test, will be open during the second week of each quarter. To register, report in person with two photo ID's, including your UCI photo ID card to the Academic Testing Center, 3040 Anteater Instruction and Research Building. At the time you register, you will be given information on the date, time, and location of the test.

Notification of Results

Results will not be available by telephone; rather, the student will be notified via e-mail to come by the Academic Testing Center when results are in. A paper copy of test results will be available during Finals Week in the Academic Testing Center. Presentation of a UCI photo ID is a requirement. Notification will be sent to each student's academic unit. However, the results will not appear on the student's transcript.    

If you need further information on language breadth testing, please e-mail the AcademicTesting Center at or call our office at (949) 824-6207 or contact your academic counseling office.