Spanish Language Placement and Exemption Exam

UCI students who speak and read Spanish can take a placement exam or an exemption exam to satisfy Category VI and VIII General Education requirements.

Spanish Placement Testing

Students with any previous experience in Spanish must take a placement test to determine which course would be appropriate for them. (Exceptions to taking the tests are described below.)

Two types of Spanish placement tests are availabe for the academic yearPlease note, each exam can only be taken once.The first test (Test A), designed for students learning Spanish as a second language or who are heritage speakers with limited communication experience. The second test (Test B) is designed for heritage speakers who have active communication ability in Spanish. Both exams are currently available online.

You should take Test A for Spanish placement if:

• You really began learning Spanish in middle school or high school;

• You mostly use Spanish in your Spanish classes at school;

• You have parents or caregivers who speak Spanish but you do not use Spanish with them;

• You can understand Spanish but cannot produce Spanish in speaking or writing.

To register for Test A please use the online registration form at:

This 90 minute exam is only available on the dates listed on the current test dates. Spanish Online Exam Descriptions

You should take Test B for Spanish placement if:

• You grew up speaking Spanish at home and in your community since childhood;

• You use Spanish in your Spanish classes at school and/or with family members or individuals who cannot speak English;

• You have parents or caregivers who speak Spanish and you converse with them in Spanish;

• You understand Spanish very well and you can have a conversation, to some extent, entirely in Spanish. You can also read and write in Spanish to a certain extent. 

To register for Test B please use the online registration form at:

Exceptions to taking a Spanish placement test:

Students without previous formal or informal background in Spanish must take a copy of their high school or other school transcripts to their academic advisor to activate their eligibility to enroll in Spanish 1A.

Students who graduated from a high school in a Spanish-speaking country, or students who graduated from a Spanish Academy, must take a copy of their transcript to their academic counselor in order to receive authorization to enroll in the appropriate course.

*Unless you are not planning to continue course study, you may not be required to take a language exam. Please read the Category VI General Education Requirement Policy.*

Refreshing your language knowledge and skills

The Academic Testing Center has a small reference library to help you with your test preparation. Click here to learn about the check-out and return policies and procedures.

If it has been a while since you have taken Spanish course work, you may wish to review your high school or college material before the quarter begins. You also may consult the following textbooks used in first-year language classes:

1. Puntos de Partida: An Invitation to Spanish (Knorre et al.), 8th Edition, for the SPAN 1 Series

2. �Avance!. Bretz et al., 2nd edition, for the SPAN 2 Series