Spanish self-placement? 


Man holding sign asking "Do you speak spanish?"Determining your level of Spanish

Use this table to help you determine which Spanish course matches you best. However, as needed, please feel free to contact the World Language Department or the Spanish Lead Faculty directly for more assistance.

Please be aware that in your CSN Spanish class you will need to actively use the Spanish you are learning or have already learned in a previous course. To determine what course you should enroll in, do not look at the number of semesters, or years you have studied, rather what you can actually do in Spanish without looking things up. In other words:                              


“What can you actively do in Spanish?”

If you can . . . Then you may belong in...

— Speak little or no Spanish but wish to learn very basic expressions and spoken Spanish.

Is SPAN 101B the right course for me?
This course will not transfer to a 4-year college and cannot be taken to fulfill part of a B.A. or B.S. degree. Many students take this course to get started in Spanish, for enrichment or to fulfill some of the AAS and other program requirements.


If you can . . .
— Speak little or no Spanish “OR” speak some Spanish, know about 50 –200 words in Spanish and can express a few things but are not always accurate when you speak Spanish. 

SPAN 101B and SPAN 111?
Both courses do not require any previous Spanish. Although anyone can enroll in SPAN 101B, no matter what his/her Spanish level, some students enroll in SPAN 101B when they are actually more suited for SPAN 111. SPAN 101B is a 3-credit course that moves slower and covers less material, but it cannot be used toward a 4-year degree. SPAN 111 is a 4-credit course that moves faster and covers more material, but it may transfer to other institutions.

Why SPAN 111 might be best for you?
If you are a beginning learner of Spanish and need this course to transfer toward a 4-year degree, or if you have already had and/or been successful in one or perhaps two years of high school Spanish, but have not progressed further nor have had any other Spanish experiences, then SPAN 111 is probably still the level for you.

SPAN 111

If you can . . .
— Greet people, state your name, describe people's physical appearance and personality with minimal errors, name basic articles of clothing and mention colors, identify basic classroom objects, use “tú” and “usted” appropriately, count up to 1,000 with accurate pronunciation, identify family members, state people's age, marital status, nationality, address and phone number, name Spanish countries and languages, say the alphabet, name the days of the week, the seasons and the months, tell the weather, state dates, identify and actively tell about 30 common everyday activities, (I read, my friends study, etc.), make simple statements about what people do, want to do, prefer to do and are going to do in the future, form questions, make basic statements about things people do in the present, describe where things are located (in front of, behind, etc.), identify common places in a city, name and locate the Spanish-speaking countries and their capitals, make simple statements about what people are doing right now, describe people's everyday routines (she wakes up, she brushes her teeth, eats breakfast, etc.), name major holidays and describe them, identify major professions and workplaces and describe what people in these professions do, identify the rooms and common objects in and around a house, identify household chores, and make simple statements about what people must and have to do, all without looking up these things.

— Write about all these above things in paragraph-length compositions, read about them in page-length texts, understand dialogues on them, and sustain 3 to 5 minute-long conversations on them.

Note: Placement into SPAN 111 v. SPAN 112?
Placement into SPAN 112 depends on true mastery of using both spoken and written Spanish in the present tense, being able to accurately respond to questions and the level of accurate extension of topics.

SPAN 112

If you can . . .
— Do all of the above and identify and talk about meals and common foods, make statements using the "impersonal se" ("Se vende," etc.), make accurate statements about things that people did in the past (using the preterit tense forms) and about what life was like "back then" (using the imperfect tense), distinguish between the imperfect and the preterit and the usage of them in normal conversations about past events with minimal errors.

— Write about these things in page-length compositions, read about any of the above topics in essays of several pages, understand somewhat sophisticated dialogue on them, and sustain seven-10-minute conversations on them...doing all these things accurately and fairly spontaneously without having to look up forms.

Note: Placement into SPAN 112 v. 211?
Placement between these courses usually depends on the accuracy of having mastered SPAN 111, and 112 topics (present and past tenses). This cannot be stressed enough!

SPAN 211

If you can . . .
— speak Spanish and have had some experiences even if minimal with formal study of Spanish (i.e. A heritage speaker of Spanish but with some study of Spanish using Spanish at home or in an educational setting).

Note: SPAN 226 self-placement?
SPAN 226 does not require any prerequisite. However, the course is conducted completely in Spanish.

SPAN 226