Language Placement

If you have previous experience with French, Spanish, or Chinese, you can use this guide to determine the course level that is right for you.

After looking over the guide, if you’re still uncertain about which course to take, you can fill out a Language Placement Survey in Self-Service Banner and a faculty member will contact you with a personalized recommendation on which course to take.

Bienvenue!

Welcome to the Language Placement Guide for the French & Francophone Studies Program. If you have previous experience with French, consult this guide to determine the best course for you:

The French & Francophone Studies Program offers multiple culture, literature, and film courses in English (most of which count for the LT Gen Ed). If your schedule does not permit you to take the appropriate French language course, you can still expand your knowledge of French & Francophone culture and work towards a French & Francophone Studies minor or major by taking one of these courses. There is usually one offered per semester.

Visit our website for information about our major, minors and study away opportunities! And please do not hesitate to contact program faculty with any questions you may have about French at PLU:

Prof. Rebecca Wilkin: wilkinrm@plu.edu
Prof. Patrick Moneyang: moneyaph@plu.edu

French Language Placement:

Generally, you can self-determine which French class is right for you by following the guidelines below. However, if you are uncertain about your level based on your previous coursework, or if you are a heritage speaker of French (if you grew up with French in the home, but do not master it like a native speaker), you can complete the Language Placement Survey and a French & Francophone Studies faculty member will contact you with a personalized recommendation.

For more information on the vocabulary, grammar structures, and cultural content covered at each level, click on the course number.

If you have had. . .then enroll in . . . .
Less than 1 year of French studyFREN 101
1 full year of French study FREN 102 (or J-Term FREN 101)
2 full years of French studyFREN 201
3 full years of French studyFREN 201 or 202
4 full years of French study or AP/IBFREN 202

FREN 301 may be possible with recommendation from the Language Placement Survey

If you have taken a proficiency test (like STAMP or AAPPL), or the Seal of Biliteracy, follow this guide:

  • Novice Mid: Continue in FREN 101
  • Novice High: Continue in FREN 201
  • Intermediate low: Continue in FREN 202
  • Intermediate Mid or Higher: FREN 301 may be possible with recommendation from the Language Placement Survey

PLU course numberGrammar TopicsLanguage Production Goals ( More examples here )
FREN 101Present-tense verbs; adjective agreement

Chapters 1-5 of Horizons
Novice Mid: I can express my likes and dislikes on very familiar and everyday topics of interest, using a mixture of practiced or memorized words, phrases and simple sentences
FREN 102Narrating in the past tenses (passé composé, imperfect, and plus-que-parfait)

Chapters 6-10 of Horizons
Novice High: I can present personal information about my life and activities, using simple sentences most of the time.
FREN 201Review of present and past tenses; question formation; object pronouns (le vs. lui) relative pronouns (que, qui, lequel, etc.)

Chapters 1-5 of Imaginez
Intermediate Low: I can express, ask about, and react with some details to preferences, feelings, or opinions on familiar topics, by creating simple sentences and asking appropriate follow-up questions.
FREN 202Review of future and conditional; subjunctive

Chapters 6-10 of Imaginez
Intermediate Mid: I can exchange preferences, feelings, or opinions and provide basic advice on a variety of familiar topics, creating sentences and series of sentences and asking a variety of follow-up questions.
FREN 301Content-driven conversation and composition and review of grammar topics learned through FREN 202 or equivalent. Intermediate High: I can explain preferences, opinions, and emotions and provide advice on a variety of familiar and some concrete topics that I have researched, using connected sentences that may combine to form paragraphs and asking a variety of questions, often across various time frames.

¡Bienvenidxs!

Welcome to the Language Placement Guide for the Hispanic and Latino Studies Program.
If you have previous experience with Spanish, consult this guide to determine the best course for you:

Visit our website for information about our major, minors and study away opportunities!

Spanish for Second Language Learners:

Generally, you can self-determine which Spanish class is right for you by following the guidelines below. However, if you are uncertain about your level, you can complete the Language Placement Survey and a Hispanic and Latino Studies faculty member will contact you with a personalized recommendation.

For more information on the vocabulary, grammar structures, and cultural content covered at each level, click on the course number.

If you have had. . .then enroll in . . .
Less than 2 years of Spanish studyHISP 101, 102, or 103
2 full years of Spanish studyHISP 201
3 full years of Spanish studyHISP 201 or 202
4 full years of Spanish study or AP/IBHISP 202

HISP 301 may be possible with recommendation from the Language Placement Survey

If you have taken a proficiency test (like STAMP or AAPPL), or the Seal of Biliteracy, follow this guide:

  • Novice Mid: Continue in HISP 101
  • Novice High: Continue in HISP 201
  • Intermediate low: Continue in HISP 202
  • Intermediate Mid or Higher: HISP 301 may be possible with recommendation from the Language Placement Survey

PLU course numberGrammar TopicsLanguage Production Goals ( More examples here )
HISP 101Present-tense verbs; adjective agreement

Chapters 1-5 of Panorama
Novice Mid: I can express my likes and dislikes on very familiar and everyday topics of interest, using a mixture of practiced or memorized words, phrases and simple sentences
HISP 102Preterite and imperfect (narrating in past tense)
Intro to subjunctive

Chapters 6-10 of Panorama
Novice High: I can present personal information about my life and activities, using simple sentences most of the time.
HISP 103Personalized review of HISP 101 content;

Chapters 6-10 of Panorama
Novice High: I can present personal information about my life and activities, using simple sentences most of the time.
HISP 201Review of present and past tenses; adjective agreement;

Chapters 1-5 of Imagina
Intermediate Low: I can express, ask about, and react with some details to preferences, feelings, or opinions on familiar topics, by creating simple sentences and asking appropriate follow-up questions.
HISP 202Perfect tenses;
Advanced subjunctive structures;

Chapters 6-10 of Imagina
Intermediate Mid: I can exchange preferences, feelings, or opinions and provide basic advice on a variety of familiar topics, creating sentences and series of sentences and asking a variety of follow-up questions.
HISP 301Content-driven conversation and composition utilizing grammar topics learned through HISP 202 or equivalent.
Intermediate High: I can explain preferences, opinions, and emotions and provide advice on a variety of familiar and some concrete topics that I have researched, using connected sentences that may combine to form paragraphs and asking a variety of questions, often across various time frames.
Spanish for Heritage Speakers:

The PLU Hispanic and Latino Studies program offers two specialized courses for heritage speakers: HISP 252 every fall and HISP 351 every spring. You can self-determine which course is right for you by reviewing the descriptions below. However, if you are uncertain about which course to enroll in, you can complete the Language Placement Survey and a Hispanic and Latino Studies faculty member will contact you with a personalized recommendation.

Are You a Heritage Speaker?

I grew up speaking Spanish and/or Spanglish in my home

I speak Spanish with friends, family, and/or community members

Spanish is part of my Latino/a/x or Hispanic cultural heritage

My first language was Spanish, or both Spanish and English

I lived in a Spanish-speaking country for two years or longer

If you checked two or more of these boxes, you are a heritage speaker!

Heritage speakers are students who have been exposed to the Spanish language at home. Unlike the term “native speaker,” which implies mastery of your native language, the term “heritage speaker” recognizes the wide and diverse spectrum of language abilities exhibited by bilinguals. Some heritage speakers speak, read, and write in Spanish with a high level of proficiency. Others may speak the language, but have not had the opportunity to develop writing and reading skills. There are also heritage speakers who are receptive to spoken Spanish, but who may not feel confident when speaking the language. Spanish for heritage speakers courses are designed to meet you where you’re at and support you in reaching your language goals!

PLU course number 
HISP 252: Spanish for Heritage Speakers


Appropriate for students with or without previous Spanish study
Affirm and build upon your Spanish language abilities through:

• Community building with other heritage speakers and exploration of topics related to language and identity;
• Conversations about literary and cultural texts;
• Vocabulary expansion exercises;
• Workshops on using accents in your writing;
• Personalized review of grammar structures you want to learn or strengthen;
• Cultural projects exploring what it means to be Latino/a/x in the US;
• Opportunities to practice various modes of writing and public speaking.
HISP 351: Hispanic Voices for Social Change for Heritage Speakers

Prerequisite:
HISP 252 recommended, but not required.


Appropriate for students with or without previous Spanish study
Affirm and build upon your Spanish language abilities through:

• Community building with other heritage speakers;
• Conversations about literary and cultural texts focused on conflicts and social struggles in Latin America and Spain and their ongoing legacies today;
• Workshops on writing conventions in Spanish to develop academic writing styles;
• Personalized review of grammar structures you want to learn or strengthen;
• Participation in group projects and presentations.
Student Testimonials:

“It was the first time I was able to be in a class which catered to my needs, unlike Spanish classes I’ve taken before which assume I don’t have a background in it. I was especially glad to see my accent mark usage get better and better with each assignment! The class helped my vocabulary too, and overall exponentially improved my writing. Helped me communicate better with Spanish speaking family too (I don’t sound as awkward anymore).” Ale Robatty Llerena

“I was nervous at first when I signed up for this class because I knew that I still struggled with the way I spoke and read Spanish. I imagined that this class would be filled with fluent speakers and I would be the odd one out, but these beliefs were shattered the first day. Everyone had something they wanted to improve and they also took this class as a way to improve their Spanish. We created a family-like atmosphere where we were comfortable to share our mistakes and hesitations because we all knew we were in the same boat.” Ashley Carreño-Millan

“En esta clase aprendí más en los primeros 2 meses que en 2 años de español de la preparatoria. Esta clase es muy divertida y también cubre todos los detalles del lenguaje español que me dieron problemas antes. La acentuación era un área donde yo batallaba mucho, pero después de esta clase, entiendo todas las reglas y cómo usar los acentos.” Óscar Cantú

“This class helped me develop a critical mind that allowed me to analyze important subjects that are relevant to all Latinos. Most importantly, this class allowed me to learn how to celebrate my Hispanic roots through our studies.” Luis Gómez

“This class is very different from a high school class because you get to learn about various countries in Latin America and about the different types of habla in the countries. The type of learning environment that Profesora Davidson created in our class was amazing, you really feel like you’re in class with your friends.” Valeria A. Pinedo Chipana

“I was nervous about signing up for HISP 252, because I didn’t practice my Spanish with anyone besides my mom. The class encouraged me to apply to study away in Oaxaca, and from there, want to learn more about the Spanish-speaking world along with its various peoples/cultures, and declare a major in Hispanic Studies. I am more connected at PLU because of this class.” Francisco Aragón

“Desde chiquita he hablado español pero nunca he podido escribirlo bien porque no aprendí las reglas, entonces me encantó que era un enfoque principal en esta clase. I’ve always been afraid of going to Mexico and speaking with my family over there because I was so shaky with the language, but now I feel so much better about my heritage and how I speak!” Yesenia Rodríguez

Huanying! 欢迎

Welcome to the PLU Chinese Program. If you have previous experience with Chinese, we encourage you to complete the Language Placement Survey. After you complete the survey, one of our faculty members will reach out to you with a personalized recommendation on where to start your studies.

Language Placement Survey in Self-Service Banner

If you would like to self-enroll, we suggest the following guidelines:

  • No prior experience:  CHIN 101
  • Less than 2 years of Chinese language study: CHIN 101 (fall) or CHIN 102 (spring)
  • 2 years or more of Chinese language study:  CHIN 201 (fall) or CHIN 202 (spring)
  • 4 or more years of Chinese language study: 301

Visit our website for information about our program and study away opportunities! And please do not hesitate to contact program faculty with any questions you may have about Chinese and Chinese Studies at PLU:

Prof. Paul Manfredi: manfredi@plu.edu