Foreign Language Placement

All undergraduate students are required to pass a 200-level language course as part of the core basic requirements. Subsequently, any student who has studied a foreign language in high school must complete a foreign language placement test in the language(s) studied. Placement is determined by the Foreign Language Placement Test.

Exemptions may occur based on Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate scores; view table below for details.

Students whose primary language (the language of instruction in the student’s prior schooling) is other than English are exempt from the basic requirement in foreign language and may have some restrictions on Division II choices. Please contact Ms. Margaret Clayton ( for more information.

Note: Once a placement level is determined, students will not receive credit for a class at a lower level than the level of their placement exam, unless they first complete all steps below:

  • register for the class in which they placed,
  • attend a few class meetings,
  • consult with their professor,
  • successfully appeal their placement to the language placement appeals officers of the designated department

Foreign Language Placement tests require WFU credentials. Access found at bottom of page.

AP & IB Foreign Language Placement
If You Scored:Foreign Language RequirementYou Should Register For:
6 or 7 in IB Arabic LanguageNot SatisfiedArabic 201
3 in AP Chinese Language and CultureNot Satisfied
Chinese 153
4 in AP Chinese Language and CultureNot SatisfiedChinese 201
5 in AP Chinese Language and CultureSatisfiedChinese 220
3, 4, or 5 in AP French
6 or 7 in IB French Language
Not SatisfiedFrench 214
(French 212 or French 213 are acceptable as well)
3 in AP GermanNot SatisfiedGerman 210 or German 212
4 in AP German
6 or 7 in IB German Language
Not Satisfied
German 212
5 in AP GermanSatisfiedAny upper-level German course
3, 4, or 5 in AP ItalianNot SatisfiedItalian 212
3 in AP JapaneseNot SatisfiedJapanese 153
4 in AP JapaneseNot SatisfiedJapanese 201
5 in AP JapaneseSatisfiedJapanese 220
1 or 2 in AP LatinNot SatisfiedCourse placement determined by Foreign Language Placement Test
3 in AP LatinNot SatisfiedLatin 153
4 or 5 in AP LatinNot SatisfiedLatin 211
Latin 212
3 in AP Spanish LanguageNot SatisfiedSpanish 212
Spanish 213
Spanish 280 L/280 (for HL)
4 or 5 in AP Spanish LanguageNot SatisfiedSpanish 212
Spanish 213
Spanish 280*
Spanish 280L*/280 (for HL)
3 in AP Spanish LiteratureSatisfiedSpanish 280 (optional)
Spanish 280L*/280 (for HL)
4 or 5 in AP Spanish LiteratureSatisfiedSpanish 309-319 (optional)
Spanish 309L* or 310-319 (for HL)
6 or 7 in IB Spanish LanguageNot SatisfiedSpanish 212
Spanish 213
Spanish 280*
Spanish 280L*/212/213 (for HL)
  • Consult the University Registrar’s Advanced Placement & International Baccalaureate policies for foreign language placement of languages not reflected in the table.
  • Students who receive credit for German 212 but wish to take German 212 at WFU, may petition the German and Russian Department to have their AP credit changed to German 210 or 214 as applicable
  • Spanish 280/280L satisfies the language requirement, counts towards the Spanish major or minor, and is recommended if you think you may pursue a Spanish major or minor. If you scored a 4 or 5 in AP Spanish Language, you are prepared for this class. SPA 280L is a course specifically designed for students who grew up speaking Spanish at home.
  • Spanish 212 may be taken if you scored a 3, 4 or 5 on the AP Spanish Language exam and are fairly certain that you will not be pursuing Spanish at Wake Forest. This class does not count towards the major or minor.
  • * Highly recommended; HL= Heritage Language students
  • I have AP credit in a language. Do I still need to take the exam?

    If you have 3 or higher on an AP exam or 6 or higher on an IB higher-level foreign language test, you do not need to complete the Foreign Language Placement exam. To determine which foreign language course you should register for, view the table above.

    Please note that Wake Forest MUST receive your scores directly from The College Board (  The Wake Forest College code is 5885. You will not be allowed to register for any upper-level language course until your scores are received. If you have additional questions regarding Advanced Placement, please contact the Registrar’s office at 336.758.5207.

  • I have studied language X in high school, but have no plans to continue studying that language in college. Do I still need to take the placement exam?

    Wake Forest policy states that a student must take a placement exam in any language studied in high school even if he/she does not intend to continue with it. In the past, students have needed to return to a previously studied language. Taking a placement exam is not a commitment to study that language. It is simply a matter of having a record, in case it is needed.

  • Can I take the placement exam on a language that I have not studied?

    It is not recommended to take the FLP exam of a language not studied in high school.

  • Do I have to take the placement exam if I am a native speaker of a language other than English?

    Students for whom English is a second language do not usually take a placement test in their first language, but may do so for any third language they have studied. Students whose primary language (the language of instruction in the student’s prior schooling) is other than English are exempt from the basic requirement in foreign language and may have some restrictions on Division II choices. Please contact Ms. Margaret Clayton ( for more information.

  • What should I do if I have technical problems or lose my internet connection while taking the exam?

    If you have technical problems, verify that you’re using the recommended browser. If problems persist, contact the Information Systems Service Desk at AskDeac for help. If you lose your internet connection, contact AskDeac to explain and to request that your initial results be deleted; you can then restart the FLPT from the beginning. (Note that if you do not have technical issues but are dissatisfied with your FLPT results, you cannot request a test reset; instead, contact the professor listed below (“Can I speak with a professor of a language if I have non-technical questions?”).

  • What class should I take if I decide to start a new language?

    If your experience in a previously studied language was not very successful, you should start the new language in Lang 111 (first-semester language class). If your experience was successful, you may be able to start at the Lang 113 level, depending on what language you plan to study. Lang 113 is for students who have studied another foreign language, are highly motivated, and have a good grasp of grammar and grammatical terms.

  • When & How do I know my placement results?

    As soon as you have completed the exam in Qualtrics, your placement will appear on the screen. Your results will come in the form of a class placement (for example, “Spanish 153” or “French 111”). You will also receive an email with your course placement; you should keep this email for your records.

  • How do I interpret my placement results?

    An example using French follows:

    • French 111: First semester of French in college. Initial level placement.
    • French 113: First and second semesters of college-level French in one semester. It means that instead of two semesters, you can complete the first year of French in one semester.
    • French 153: Third and fourth semesters of French in college. You will need just one additional semester to complete the equivalent of two years of college-level French. After French 153, you take either French 212 or French 213 to satisfy the language requirement at Wake Forest.
    • French 154: Students who place at this level can complete the third and fourth semester in college in three classes a week because they have a higher proficiency level than students placing into French 153.
    • French 212/213: Students will need just one of these two courses to fulfill their basic foreign language requirement at Wake Forest.
    • French 214: The Honors section of French 213, for students with very strong high school preparation. Students with an AP score of 3 or higher or an IB language score of 6 or higher also place into French 214.
    • French 216: For students with very strong high school preparation and/or extended study or residence in a French-speaking country. This class satisfies the foreign language basic requirement and counts toward a minor/major.

    Numbers may vary slightly depending on the language. Consult the Undergraduate Bulletin or ask your academic adviser.

  • Can I register for a course at a higher level than the one I placed into?

    If you feel your placement is too low, you must first consult the professor or department. In most cases, you will need the permission of the instructor (POI number code) to register for another level.

  • Can I register for a course at a lower level than the one I placed into?

    No. The Wake Forest placement policy states that you must enroll in the course at the indicated level, or at a higher level. It is possible to appeal your language placement, but only after the semester starts, and you have attended a couple of classes at the indicated level. At that time, you should consult the professor of that course for information about the appeals process.

  • How may I appeal my placement?

    Placement Appeals

    We recognize that sometimes the placement test fails to bring out a certain weakness or deficiency, and the student may need personal accommodation in order to arrive at the right placement level. In that case, the student may appeal his/her placement to a departmental representative (placement appeals officer).If you decide to appeal, you must first go to the assigned class for the initial sessions (as indicated in The Undergraduate Bulletin) to see how it “feels,” and to discuss any reservations or specific problems with the course instructor. Then, if you still think a change to a lower level course is appropriate, you will need to make an appointment with the placement appeals officer listed below.

    The following professors are the appeals officer and points of contact for each language or will tell you whom to contact.

    He/she will interview you to determine whether there is a major deficiency that justifies reassignment to a lower level. If so, then he/she will notify the Registrar and department in writing, and you may then “add/drop” to the other course. Without that written approval, a unilateral switch to a lower course will result in zero credit for it.Note that it is to your advantage to continue with a language you have started, and in the course you’re placed in if you’re capable of it. Going down to a lower level will extend the time needed to fulfill the foreign language basic requirement. On the other hand, in most cases no special appeal is needed in order to try a higher level that you believe you’re capable of; you should contact the professor of the course to explain your background and request permission to enroll.

The following professors have agreed to answer questions about the placement exam for particular languages:

(Username is WFU email minus