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Foreign Language Placement Information

Because of the increasing globalization of culture, society, and the economy, every student in the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and the School of Journalism must demonstrate a certain level of foreign language proficiency to graduate from Stony Brook (LANG requirement). To satisfy the foreign language requirement, students must pass the second semester of an elementary foreign language course (numbered 101 or 112) with a letter grade of C or higher, or enroll in a foreign language course at the intermediate level or higher and earn a grade of C or better. Graduates from the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences students are exempt from this requirement. 

Foreign Language Placement Examination

The Foreign Language Placement Examination is used to place students into the appropriate level of elementary language courses at Stony Brook or to satisfy the foreign language requirement. Unless you have already met the language requirement via one of the exceptions listed below, you must complete the Foreign Language Placement exam at least one week before your assigned orientation date in order to ensure your score is available for you to register for a foreign language course while at orientation. In order to minimize trips to campus, we encourage you to take the foreign language exam on the same day as your math exam if possible.

To register for a Foreign Language Placement exam, students should sign on to SOLAR and click on the Advising Planning Form under the new student information folder. Students will then be able to select their preferred date and time for the 15-55 minute proctored exam.

It is very important that you set up your NetID before coming to campus to take your foreign language placement exam. For more information on how to do this visit the checklist links for transfer students or freshmen students.

Satisfying requirements with transfer and test scores prior to entering Stony Brook

Proficiency for some students will be determined prior to their entering Stony Brook by transfer credits, Regents examination, SAT II scores, or AP scores.   Proficiency for other students will be determined by taking the Foreign Language Placement Examination. 

  • Students who have received AP scores on a foreign language or literature exam with a score of 3 or higher will satisfy the foreign language requirement. 
  • Students who have transfer college credit equivalent to the second-semester introductory or higher level foreign language course from a regionally accredited institution with a grade of C or higher will satisfy the foreign language requirement. 
  • Students who have previously attended at least two years at a secondary school or university where the primary language of instruction is other than English can submit official transcripts from the institution to satisfy the foreign language requirement.
  • Students with a score of 530 or higher on the SAT II in a foreign language will satisfy the foreign language requirement. 
  • Students with a score of 85 or higher on a New York State foreign language Regents examination taken in 2011 or earlier will satisfy the foreign language requirement.
  • Students with a score of 5 or higher on the Higher Level IB exam.

Test or Course

Score

Result

Foreign Language Course

SAT II

Foreign Language

530 or higher

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

New York State Regents Exam 
(2011 or earlier)

Foreign Language

85 or higher

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

AP

Foreign Language

3 or higher

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

Secondary School
primary language of instruction other than English

Two or more years

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

Transfer

Foreign Language, 112 equivalent   

C or higher

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

IB Exam

Higher level

Score of 5 or higher

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 211)

 

 

Foreign Language Exam Scores

Test or Course

Score

Result

Foreign Language Course

None

 

Take two-semester elementary foreign language course sequence 

Enroll in a course  sequence numbered 101 or 111/112

Foreign Language Placement Exam

Take two-semester elementary foreign language course sequence 

Enroll in a course sequence numbered 101 or 111/112

Foreign Language Placement Exam

2

Waives from first semester of elementary foreign language course sequence

Enroll in a course numbered 112

Foreign Language Placement Exam

3

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 201 or 211)

Foreign Language Placement Exam

4

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for 212 in all languages except Spanish*)

Foreign Language Placement Exam

5

Satisfies foreign language  requirement

None required for Skill 3 or LANG fulfillment

(qualified for upper division)

*Students who score a 4 on the foreign language placement exam in Spanish should speak directly to the Spanish department for placement into upper division courses.

Other Ways to Satisfy the Foreign Language Requirement
Students who are proficient in a language not offered at Stony Brook may satisfy the foreign language requirement through the Challenge Examination Program, administered by the Language Learning Research Center (LLRC). For details, go to www.stonybrook.edu/commcms/llrc/placement_challenge_exams/challenge_exam.html.

This requirement may be fulfilled by certain study abroad immersion programs. For more information, visit:www.stonybrook.edu/studyabroad/

Students who do not satisfy the foreign language requirement by any of the means listed above will be required to take a two-semester elementary foreign language course sequence.

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