Advising & Placement in World Languages

The Department of World Languages and Literatures offers undergraduate majors in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish. It also offers undergraduate minors in American Sign Language (ASL), Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Modern Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Persian, Russian, Spanish, Classical Studies, and a Certificate of Advanced Proficiency in Russian and Certificate in Teaching Japanese as a Second Language. It also participates in the Secondary Education Program. The Department offers the following graduate degrees: Master of Arts in World Language and Master of Arts in World Languages and Literatures.

For Faculty advising in your language please:

-- fill in and submit this Advising Request Form for Majors and Minors

Note that general undergraduate requirements advising will continue in the Advising & Career Services office (FMH 360). The World Languages majors (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, Spanish) are part of the Language, Culture, and Meaning Pathway. Students in this pathway are assigned to an advisor based on the last 2 digits of their PSU ID number. For general advising questions, email To make an appointment with an advisor, visit Academic Advising (

WebCAPE placement test for French

If you are a French Major or Minor and need an adviser, please fill in and submit this Advising Request Form for Majors and Minors

French Major and Minor Advising Worksheet

If you have previously taken French, we recommend you take the WebCAPE test to help determine your level of French proficiency. The table below will help you choose the appropriate class based on your WebCAPE score.

Take the WebCAPE Test


Web C.A.P.E. score Course Recommendation
150 - 249 FR102 is recommended.
See notes 1-2 below.
250 - 339 Registration in FR 201 is recommended.
340 - 399 Registration in FR301 may be recommended. See note 3 below.
400 - 500 Registration in FR301 is recommended.
Above 500 Consult with an adviser.

1. If your score is between 150 - 220, it is highly recommended that you register for FR102 (winter term). Although some material may be review, the course moves quickly. If your score is close to 220 and your previous preparation is strong, you may speak with an adviser AFTER fall term begins but before winter term registration.

2. If your score is between 220 - 250, enrolling in FR102 may still be the best choice, although FR103 is an option. Be advised that FR103 can be a difficult entry point: FR103 moves rapidly, and if you discover you lack the essentials from FR102, you may receive a low grade, or need to withdraw and then wait to take FR102.

For a few students in the 220-250 range, it may be feasible to go directly into FR201. If you are motivated to make an extra effort and you have recently had two years of high-school or one year of college-level French, you should consult with an adviser before the first day of class to determine if your background and your speaking and listening comprehension are adequate for FR201.

3. If your score is between 340 - 399, you should consult with an adviser to determine whether enrollment in FR301 or a course in the FR200 series is most appropriate.

For additional information about selecting the appropriate French course, please contact Dr. Jennifer Perlmutter,

When you contact the professor, you will want to indicate what your background is in French, including the following information: a) where you have studied, b) for how long, and c) how long it has been since you last studied the language.

This year the WLL Department is making its placement more systematic. We are providing much more advising information on-line. Much more important, we are encouraging prospective students to take language assessment tests, which include one or more of the following: the WebCAPE computer-administered reading, vocabulary and grammar test; a writing assessment based on a communicative task and evaluated by the German staff; a speaking assessment, based on face-to-face conversation and evaluated by the German staff. The WebCAPE test is currently our "generic" placement tool. We also offer the other assessments by individual appointment.

Take the WebCAPE Test

WebCAPE placement test for German

If you are a German Major or Minor and need an adviser, please fill in and submit this Advising Request Form for Majors and Minors

Recommended course placement based on WebCAPE score:

  • 400 and above: We recommend courses at the third year or higher.
  • 250-400: We recommend a second-year course (201/202/203).
  • Below 250: We recommend a first-year course (101/102/103).

These recommendations are not absolute. If you have had previous exposure to German, whether in the classroom or informally, you should consider such factors as the quality of the instruction, how long it took you to get where you are in the language, your career and life plans, and other demands on your time and attention.

Since the first- and second-year German courses place much emphasis on communicative skills, especially in speaking, you may benefit from an individual assessment of your speaking and writing skills. Please contact Dr. Kathie Godfrey at for assistance.

Take the WebCAPE Test


WebCAPE placement test for Spanish

Take the WebCAPE Placement test

If your WebCAPE Placement for Spanish is:

WEB CAPE score: 0 – 175
Register for First-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 101*.  

WEB CAPE score: 176 – 225
Register for First-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 102*

WEB CAPE score: 226 – 275
Register for First-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 103*.  

WEB CAPE score: 276 – 325
Register for Second-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 201*.

WEB CAPE score: 326 – 375
Register for Second-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 202*.

WEB CAPE score: 376 – 450
Register for Second-Year Spanish, preferably SPAN 203*.

WEB CAPE score: 451+
Please make an appointment with Instructor Ines Warnock at to discuss your options.  Include your WebCAPE exam score and your PSU student ID number in the appointment notes.

Spanish for Native and Heritage Speakers
If you are an advanced native speaker who graduated from high school (or higher) in a Spanish-speaking country, consult with the Instructor Melissa Patino-Vega at for placement prior to registering for classes. Please include your PSU Student ID number and Heritage Spanish test score. Heritage Spanish Placement Test.

An individual who has not graduated from high school (or higher) in a Spanish-speaking country is regarded as a heritage speaker.  Spanish language courses specifically designed for heritage speakers are offered as 201/301H, 202/302H, and 203/303H. Students must contact the instructor prior to registering. See schedule of classes for current instructor and contact information.


When should I meet with my adviser?
What are the requirements for the Spanish major?
What are the requirements for a minor in Spanish?
In what order should I take my classes?
Where do I begin?
How do I take the placement test?
Can I test out of Spanish classes?
I am a transfer student. Where do I begin?
How do I sign up for an orientation?
What are the requirements for a post-baccalaureate degree in Spanish?
What are the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements and have I met them?
How do I meet the University Writing Requirement?
What is University Studies and where do I begin?
Can I complete my major/minor requirements abroad?
Can I earn Spanish credit for an internship abroad?
Can I take a course by arrangement?
When can I register?
What should I do if the class I want is full?
How do I run a DARS report?
My classes are in the wrong place on my DARS report. What should I do?
How do I apply to graduate?
Are there any scholarships for students of Spanish?
I need graduate level advising; where do I go?


Your adviser is looking forward to meeting with you and answering your questions! Please contact your adviser early in your program so you can get on the right track from the beginning. Meeting with your adviser is most helpful for finding out about the major and minor, knowing where to begin and how to sequence your classes, interpreting your DARS report, learning about classes, programs, and resources that you might not have discovered on your own, and much more.

If you are a Spanish Major or Minor and need an adviser:

-- fill in and submit this Advising Request Form for Majors and Minors


40 credits upper-division Spanish Language, Literature and Culture
04 credits linguistics
08 credits upper-division elective courses
52 credits total (= 13 courses)

Students must take 8 credits of 300 level literature (SPAN 341, 342, 343, 344, 345), and 16 credits at the 400 level, 8 of which must be numbered higher than 410.

See the Spanish major worksheet for course numbers and other detailed information.


20 credits upper-division Spanish Spanish Language, Literature and Culture
04 credits linguistics
24 credits total (= 6 courses)

Please see the Spanish minors worksheet for course numbers and additional information.


301 and 302 may be taken concurrently, and should be completed before 303.
8 credits of 301-303 must be completed before 330, 331, or 325.
301, 302, and 303 must be completed before 341, 342, 343, 344, or 345
301, 302, and 303 must be completed before 411, 414, 497, or 498.
It is also recommended that students complete 4 credits of Linguistics before 497 or 498.
301, 302, 303, and 325 must be completed before 490 or 494.
8 credits of 341-345 must be completed before any 400-level courses numbered 421-436.

(For prerequisite purposes, 301-303 are considered equivalent to 301H-303H.)


If you’ve recently taken a Spanish course, continue with the next course in the sequence. If some time has passed since your last class or you have experience learning in a different setting (e.g. at work or living abroad), you may wish to take the placement test. The placement test will only place students into 101, 102, 103, 201, 202, or 203. If your score is higher than 450 points, you are ready for 300 level coursework. Almost all students who score higher than 450 begin with Spanish 301. Exceptions are rare and usually apply to students who graduated from high school or college in a Spanish speaking country. If you are unsure where to begin, please see your Spanish adviser.


WebCAPE Placement: This is an online test used to determine which 100 or 200 level Spanish, German, or French class a student should take. See Testing Link and Scoring Information above.




Your adviser can help you figure out what classes to take and how many credits you have left to complete. In order to do this with accuracy, you will need to apply to the university, submit all of your transcripts, and save the transfer evaluation that you will receive from admissions. Please keep in mind that your adviser cannot evaluate your transcript, only the admissions office can. Once you have been admitted to PSU, please sign up for a new-student orientation, where you will learn about academic requirements and resources on campus.


Admitted students will receive information about orientation sessions for new students. In these sessions, you will take a tour of campus, find out about important campus resources, receive one-on-one help interpreting your transfer evaluation, learn about the different academic requirements for your degree, and meet with an adviser from the World Languages and Literatures department. Admitted students who attend an orientation are allowed to register before students who do not attend orientation. See the following website to sign up:


Students who have already earned a Bachelor’s degree can complete a post-baccalaureate degree in Spanish by completing the Spanish major requirements.

If the student’s first degree was a B.A., s/he does not have any additional requirements to fulfill. If the student’s first degree was not a B.A., the student must fulfill B.A. requirements along with requirements for the Spanish major.

If the student’s first degree is from PSU, the minimum number of credits to be earned toward the post-bac is 36. If the student’s first degree is from another institution, s/he must take at least 45 credits.

Transcripts for post-bac students are not evaluated by admissions until the student applies for graduation.

If the post-bac student has done considerable coursework in upper-division Spanish at another institution and is interested in applying for the Master’s program in Spanish, s/he may wish to consult with the Spanish adviser about earning the equivalency of a B.A. in Spanish, which could allow the student to apply to the Master’s program sooner.


For a Bachelor of Arts degree, the student must satisfy the following requirements:

  • 12 credits Arts and Letters (4 of which must be in Fine and Performing Arts)
  • 4 credits second language level 203 or higher
  • 4 credits Science/Math (excluding Math 100 or lower)
  • 8 credits Science/Social Sciences/Math (excluding Math 100 or lower)

See the PSU Bulletin or your DARS report for lists of courses that will satisfy these requirements.

Your DARS report will tell you if you have unfulfilled B.A. requirements. Please bring a printed DARS report to your adviser for help determining your status in this portion of your degree requirements. Alternatively, you may see an adviser in the office of degree requirements in Fariborz Maseeh Hall room 104.


Beginning Fall 2012, students must complete 8 credits of lower-division writing for their baccalaureate degree requirements. This requirement may be satisfied in one of the following ways:

  • Students admitted to PSU as freshmen (0-29 credits) meet the requirement by completing the first two years of University Studies or the Honors Program;
  • Students admitted to PSU having earned 30-89 credits meet the requirement with WR 121 (required for transfer admission) and the requisite number of Sophomore Inquiry courses determined by placement into University Studies or the Honors Program;
  • Students admitted having earned 90 or more credits meet the requirement with WR 121 plus an additional course from the following list: WR 211, 222, 227, WR 300, 323, 327, 333, 420 or a 4-credit Writing Intensive Course (WIC). Composition writing courses transferred into PSU may also be considered.
    This requirement is in effect for the 2012-13 catalog. Students admitted prior to Fall 2012 may speak to an adviser about whether to use an older catalog.


University Studies is PSU’s general education requirement, which embeds critical thinking and writing skills in thematic coursework. There are University Studies requirements for each year of study: Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, and Senior. Transfer students should consult their transfer evaluation or the PSU Bulletin to find out where in the sequence they should begin fulfilling this requirement.

Freshman Inquiry: A set of three classes of 5 credits each that the student will take over the course of the academic year.

Sophomore Inquiry: Three classes of 4 credits each on differing topics, taken over the course of the academic year. The student will select one of these three sophomore inquiry course to link up to the junior cluster.

Junior Cluster: A set of three courses thematically linked. Students must take courses from one cluster only, and cluster classes may not count toward the major. All cluster courses are noted with a “U” after the course number, e.g. GEOG 360U. If you are double-majoring, you are allowed to count cluster classes toward the second major. Cluster classes may also count toward a minor.

Senior Capstone: A 6 credit, service-based course. A Spanish major can choose any capstone course of interests; It does not have to relate to Spanish. However, there are several capstones that do involve speaking Spanish or traveling to Spanish speaking countries. All capstone courses are numbered UNST 421.

To find more information on clusters, capstones, or any part of the university studies requirement, follow this link:


There are many opportunities for study abroad in Spanish speaking countries. The Spanish section encourages Spanish majors and minors to take part in these valuable learning opportunities. Please see the Education Abroad department for details on specific programs:

Students who wish to fulfill major or minor requirements abroad should meet with the Spanish adviser prior to traveling. The Spanish section strongly advises majors to delay fulfilling the electives requirements until after studying abroad. Additionally, students are advised to find a program offering courses that study Spanish language, literature, and culture. Not all courses taught in Spanish will count toward the Spanish major (e.g. Biology taught in Spanish does not count toward a Spanish major just as Biology taught in English does not count toward an English major).

One Spanish major requirement that may not be fulfilled abroad is the 8 credits numbered higher than 410. Those credits must be completed at PSU.


Students interested in completing an internship through Education Abroad in a Spanish speaking country are eligible to earn up to 4 credits of Spanish 404. If the student earns this credit for a grade of P/NP, it will be arranged through the Education Abroad department. Note that courses graded P/NP cannot be applied to the major or minor; all major and minor courses must have a grade of "C" or higher.  Students wishing to earn a letter grade must make arrangements in advance with the head of the Spanish section. Check with your adviser or the WLL office for contact information.


By-arrangement courses are generally not offered in the Spanish department, except in the following circumstances and only if a professor agrees to offer the by-arrangement course.

  1. The student demonstrates a strong interest in a topic which PSU does not cover in regular course offerings.
  2. The student requests the by-arrangement course two terms in advance with a formally written course proposal (the Spanish adviser has a template you can use).
  3. The student has successfully completed coursework at this level with the professor from whom s/he solicits the course.


The academic calendar lists open registration dates


First, add yourself to the wait list.  Next, find alternate classes that fit your schedule. Then, attend the first day of the class you want to register for to see if space opens up. Only the instructor of the course can permit you to add the course. Neither the WLL department, nor the Spanish adviser can add you.


  1. Go to Banweb
  2. Click on "Student Services."
  3. Click on "DARS."
  4. Select "Submit an Audit."
  5. Select "Liberal Arts and Sciences."
  6. Select "Bachelor of Arts" if Spanish is your first major.  If it is your minor, second major, or post-bac, select "Non-Degree."
  7. Select "WL: Spanish minor" for minors, or World Language: Spanish" for majors.
  8. Choose a catalog term. (This is usually the first term you were admitted and enrolled at PSU, but you may opt to choose any term since then, as well.)
  9. Click "Run Analysis."
  10. Click "View Submitted Audits."


It sometimes happens that your classes show up in the wrong place on your DARS report. Your adviser can fix this. Please email your adviser and explain the changes you would like made.


It’s easy! Fill out the application for your degree and turn it in at the office of degree requirements. This should be complete two terms prior to your expected graduation date.  Applications are available in Fariborz Maseeh Hall room 104 and online:

Check the Academic Calendar for application deadlines:

When you apply to graduate, the office of degree requirements audits your degree.  You will be notified by that office if you have any outstanding requirements to fulfill before graduating.


There are scholarships available for undergraduate Spanish students. Please visit the WLL Scholarships page for further information.


Please send an email to to request a Graduate Language Adviser.