College of Liberal Arts

Procedures for Foreign Language Credit through Placement Testing/Study Abroad

Non-native English speakers who wish to use their native language to meet the B.A. foreign language requirement.

For a student whose competency is in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Japanese, Latin, Portuguese, Russian, or Spanish:

  1. He/she should take the placement test in that language, offered through the MTSU Foreign Language Department.

  2. If the student shows proficiency through the 2020 level of the language, he/she should submit the test score to his/her advisor. The advisor will e-mail the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, requesting a waiver of the foreign language requirement. The student will not receive any credit hours for foreign language.

For a student who is proficient in a language other than the ones listed above:

  1. The student should contact Judy Albakry (898-5089) or Lucy Langworthy (494-7785) for approval of other resources for verifying competency. In most cases the student will be referred to a faculty member who is fluent in the language and who is willing to conduct a competency interview. When there is no faculty member available, the student may contact the Tennessee Foreign Language Institute - 615-741-7579, and, for a fee, set up an interview.

  2. The student should meet with the faculty member or institute representative for competency verification. The interview should be at least a 30-minute conversation in the language for which the student is seeking competency.

  3. If competency is approved, the faculty member or Tennessee Foreign Language Institute representative should e-mail the Dean of Liberal Arts, confirming that the student is proficient in the language at a level equivalent to two years of college-level coursework.

  4. If approved, the Dean of Liberal Arts contacts the Liberal Arts Graduation Coordinator to enter the waiver in the student's degree evaluation. The student will not receive any credit hours for foreign language.

Students who take the foreign language placement test at MTSU

  1. If the student places out of a course or courses in the foreign language series, he/she may enroll in the next class in the series.

  2. After completing the class with a grade of C- or better, the student must contact the secretary of the Foreign Language Department to report successful completion of the class.

  3. The secretary of the Foreign Language Department contacts Admissions to enter credit for the classes that preceded the completed class in the foreign language series.

Students who took a foreign language placement test at another institution.

  1. If the student placed out of some courses in a foreign language but did not take any foreign language courses at the other institution, he/she should take the placement test at MTSU and follow the procedures listed on the previous page for students who take the placement test at MTSU. This will allow the student to receive credit for the courses from which he/she is exempt.

  2. If the student placed out of some courses in a foreign language and began the foreign language sequence at the other institution but has not completed it, he/she will take the next course in the sequence at MTSU. If credit was not awarded at the other institution for the exempt classes, the student will not receive credit hours for them through MTSU. In the case of a major or minor in the language, the student will be deficient these hours. In these cases, the student will need to take an additional class or classes to complete the hours required of their major or minor. If the student wishes to fulfill the language requirement for the B.A. degree, he/she must have credit for the 2010 and 2020 of the language, but does not have to have the credit posted on the transcript for 1010 and 1020.

Students whose high school language requirement was waived because they were fluent in another language.

NOTE: These students will have high school deficiencies at MTSU because they do not have the 2 units of a foreign language required of high school graduates. The normal requirement to fulfill this deficiency is 1010 and 1020 of a language. Instead of taking 1010 and 1020, these students may follow the steps below.

  1. The student must prove proficiency in the second language by taking the MTSU placement test or by completing an oral interview with an MTSU faculty member fluent in that language, in the cases where no placement test is offered.

  2. The student must successfully complete English 1010 and 1020.

  3. Once English 1020 is successfully completed, the advisor sends a memo to Dean of College of Liberal Arts for approval to waive Foreign Language 1010 and 1020 based on the student's proven proficiency in his/her native language and the second language, English.

  4. If approved, the Dean of Liberal Arts contacts Admissions to have the high school deficiency removed from the student's record.

Students who wish to get foreign language credit through study abroad classes

  1. Prior to studying abroad, the student must have his/her advisor approve the classes to be taken in the study abroad program. For the student to use the course(s) to fulfill a language requirement, the course(s) must be taught in the foreign language for which the student is seeking credit.

  2. After returning from studying abroad, the student must submit a description or syllabus of the class to the Chair of the Foreign Language Department, in order to receive foreign language credit for the class(es).

  3. If the class is approved, the chair will send an e-mail to the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, requesting approval to allow the student to use the appropriate number of hours toward the Bachelor of Arts language requirement, foreign language major, or minor.

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