Reading Proficiency Examination for Graduate Students in Other Departments

In some doctoral programs, students must establish an intermediate-high level of reading proficiency in a foreign language. The Department of Modern Languages administers foreign language examination to certify reading/translation proficiency for a $40 fee. In order to set up this examination, please contact our Modern Languages Administrative Officer: Charlotte Stephens (charlots@k-state.edu).

The exam consists of a general rendering in English of two (2) selections of 250-300 words, taken from a book or other text of 100 pages or so.  Candidates will be evaluated based on the extent to which their rendering maintains the meaning of the text, and not on the mechanics of a professional translation.  They may consult a (print) bilingual dictionary.  ​

Candidates must demonstrate evidence of reading proficiency at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Intermediate High level, the rough equivalent of completion of a level IV language class:

“Readers at the Intermediate High level are able to understand fully and with ease short, non-complex texts that convey basic information and deal with personal and social topics to which the reader brings personal interest or knowledge.  These readers are also able to understand some connected texts featuring description and narration although there will be occasional gaps in understanding due to a limited knowledge of the vocabulary, structures, and writing conventions of the language” (ACTFL 2012).

The candidate should choose a suitable text in an area of personal interest, to be negotiated with the Modern Languages faculty member.  If the Modern Languages faculty feel that the text provided by the student is too difficult for the intermediate high level, the candidate should be alerted and advised to change texts. Very proficient students are permitted to provide more difficult and/or lengthy texts, but the evaluation will use the Intermediate High level of proficiency as the standard, based on an extract of around 100 pages of the text.  The candidate should then have the opportunity to work on the text for several weeks before taking the exam.

A text may be changed at any time provided that the candidate has sufficient time to prepare for the exam.  Retakes are permitted. 

Certificate of International Business Foreign Language Requirements:

International students in the College of Business Administration need to demonstrate proficiency beyond level 4 (equivalent to intermediate-high). The Department of Modern Languages administers an oral and written examination to assess the student's proficiency for a $40 fee. In order to set up this examination, please contact our Modern Languages Administrative Officer: Charlotte Stephens (charlots@k-state.edu).