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Language Skills Assessment

If you took classes in a foreign language in high school and hope to continue those studies at Saint Louis University, you will need to complete an online skills assessment at least seven days prior to the start of your SLU 101 session.

The foreign language skills assessment is just one factor that your academic advisor will consider when suggesting course recommendations during SLU 101. Other factors include:

  • High school classes and earned credit (AP, IB, 1818, transfer)
  • SAT or ACT scores
  • What you tell your academic advisor during your individual appointment

It is important that you communicate your needs and experiences with your academic advisor during your appointment at SLU 101. Keep in mind, even if the major you’ve chosen doesn’t require a foreign language, it can still be a good path of study to pursue in case your major changes or you decide to add in a minor or certificate that requires foreign language classes.

Take the Skills Assessment

The assessment for Chinese, French, German, Spanish or Latin can be taken online. Once you choose your assessment, follow these steps:

  1. Enter your SLU email address and select the testing language.
  2. You will receive an email with a link and instructions on completing the skills assessment.
  3. Print or make a note of your results so that you can discuss an appropriate course with your academic advisor during your SLU 101 visit.

You may take the test in more than one language and up to two times per language. Your most recent score will be the one used by your academic advisor when suggesting course recommendations.

Take the Online Assessment

For assessment of Russian skills, contact Elizabeth Blake, Ph.D.  For assessment of Italian skills, contact Simone Bregni, Ph.D. If you wish to test in a language that is not listed, please contact the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures at

Results for the assessment will be available to you immediately upon completion. In addition, all scores will automatically be sent to SLU when you finish the assessment.

Keep in mind that the computer assessment does not fully measure your actual competency. The final placement recommendation may be higher or lower than the score obtained on the computer results.

If you still have questions, please contact the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures at Technical support of the exam can be requested at, but non-technology questions should be directed to the department.

SLU 101 Skills Assessment FAQ

Who should take the foreign language skills assessment?

A foreign language skills assessment is mandatory for all students planning to continue in a language they have previously studied. If you have not taken a foreign language or are wishing to take courses in a language you have not previously studied, you do not need to take the skills assessment.

Is there a practice test?

There are no practice tests for this skills assessment. We suggest that you  review your high school textbooks relevant to the subject area and brush up on certain skills if possible. 

How long will the assessment take to complete?

Allow 20 minutes for the foreign language assessment. Once a you begin the assessment, you cannot stop and continue at a later time. Please provide yourself with enough time.

What do I do with my test results?

We  suggest that you print two copies of the results page: one to bring to SLU 101 and one for your personal records. All scores will also automatically be sent to SLU once you finish the assessment.  If you forget to print out your test results after you complete the exam, then you can use this link to retrieve your placement test results at anytime.

Can I take the assessment  more than once?
Each student is allowed to take the skills assessments two times per language  but no more than once in one day. We encourage you to complete the assessment as close to the completion of your high school language classes as possible. If you do take the assessment more than once,  the most recent score will be used in suggesting course recommendations. 
 Am I required to take a foreign language in my first semester at SLU?
Every major is different and your academic advisor will be able to provide information about that during your SLU 101 visit. Some curricula suggest taking a foreign language within the first year of study, while others are not as prescribed. A good rule of thumb is to take these classes as early as possible so that your skills from previous coursework in a foreign language stay current and strong. 
Why am I placed in a class that repeats information I learned in high school?  
Skills assessment scores are only one factor used in suggesting course placement at SLU. If  you must retake a class that was completed in high school, it could be because  all the factors involved in determining placement didn't match up (high school transcripts, skills assessment scores, etc.). We want all of our students to be successful at SLU, and since college-level courses are typically more rigorous than high school-level courses, we must be cautious when suggesting placement into these classes. If this should happen to you, use it as a chance to advance and be successful. 
What if I don't have access to a computer?
 To complete the skills assessments, you will need access to a computer with an Internet connection for an extended period of time. Students who do not have personal computers can consider visiting a public library, high school computer lab or neighborhood internet café. If none of these options are available, arrangements can be made upon your arrival to SLU 101.
Is it free?
There is no fee associated with taking the skills assessments. However, to complete the assessment, you must have registered for SLU 101.