Language Placement Test at Marian University

What is the foreign language requirement at Marian?

For students starting fall 2017 or later Marian University, one semester of a foreign language course beyond their current ability level is required. Marian University offers French, German, Latin, and Spanish.

Why do I need to complete a language placement test?

If you want to continue taking courses in a previously studied foreign language, you will complete foreign language placement testing online before your SOAR session. You must complete the foreign language course in which you are placed to fulfill the graduation requirement. Additional back credit may be awarded if that course is taken and passed with a C or higher.

Placement testing results are valid for two years from the test date.

What is the format of the placement test?

Marian University uses the WebCAPE Test for French, German, and Spanish. The test is multiple-choice and covers grammar, reading, and vocabulary. It is an adaptive test, which means that the question difficulty will vary depending on how you respond. Do not get discouraged if you are unfamiliar with some of the material. Make your best guess and go on to the next question.

The Marian Latin Placement Test is multiple-choice and covers grammar, reading, and vocabulary. It is not an adaptive test.

Can I study for the placement test?

Yes, we recommend that students review before the test in order to do their best.

How long does the placement test take?

It takes approximately 20-25 minutes.

What are the test guidelines?

You should only take the test once, and do your best. You should not use books, notes or any other materials or resources. Remember, this is a placement test and if you get help, use restricted materials, or purposely answer incorrectly, you will place yourself in a course that is unsuitable for you.

No academic credit is awarded for taking the test. However you may earn back credit depending on your placement. See the section on back credit below. 

When will the score be available?

At the end of your test session, you will see your score and your placement. Be sure to save a copy for your records.

What if I have no prior experience in the language that I want to study?

You may take any language offered at the 101 level (Spanish, French, German, and Latin).

What if I have studied more than one language in the past?

You may complete placement testing in more than one foreign language. The placement test for each language may be completed once. You can then choose which foreign language you wish to continue to study, start a new language, or elect to take multiple languages at Marian University.

What is the foreign language back credit policy?

Marian recognizes prior experience in the study of a foreign language by awarding back credit to students who place beyond the introductory level.

Students who test into 102-level and above receive back credit for prior courses if they take the course they tested into and pass it with a "C" or better.

Student places into, takes and passes with a "C" or better: In addition to the credit for the course the student takes, the student receives BACK CREDIT for:
102-level language course 101 (4 additional credits)
200-level language course 101 & 102 (8 additional credits)
201-level language course 102 & 200 (7 additional credits)
220/230-level language course 200 & 201 (6 additional credits)

What if I have technical difficulties while completing my placement test(s)?

If you have any technical issues while completing your placement test or need assistance with your Canvas account, please contact the Marian University Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning at with your contact information and a description of the problem. A staff member will get in touch with you to provide assistance. Note that it is recommended to use the latest version of Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome as your browser.

What if I want to take a foreign language that is not offered by Marian?

Marian University offers French, German, Latin, and Spanish. Classes in other languages (Chinese, Italian, Japanese, etc.) are available through cross-registration with other universities in Indianapolis. See the Office of the Registrar for more information. American Sign Language does not fulfill the foreign language requirement.

Are there any exceptions to the foreign language requirement?
Students with a learning disability or communication disorder that would adversely affect the learning of a foreign language should contact Counseling and Consultation Services at (317) 955-6150 or email Marj Batic at  to inquire about the evaluation process for a foreign language alternative.

The foreign language requirement is waived for international students whose high school courses were taught in their first language (not English). Contact the Office of the Registrar to verify eligibility.

For more information

Martine Camblor
Assistant Professor of French
Director of the Language Center and Language Placement testing

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