Do ALL incoming MSU students need to take this exam?

All incoming students are encouraged to take the placement exam in order to be able to take advantage of “back credits” later on if they placed into second semester (102) or higher. However, only students who will take a class in a language in which they have prior experience are required to take the placement exam.

I know I'm going to get a Bachelor of Science instead of a Bachelor of Arts - do I still need to take the test?

 If you had a foreign language before, you are encouraged to take it in order to enable you to earn credits for “university studies” requirements by taking a foreign language class at MSU. But you are not required to.

I'm a B.S. student; after the exam, do I need to enroll for a language course at MSU?

No, not unless you want to.

I don't know my major yet; do I need to take a foreign language at MSU?

Some majors require two years (12 credit hours) of a foreign language. All B.A. students earn two years of credit in a foreign language. Check with the advisor in your major and consult the Undergraduate Catalogue if you are unsure. In any case, languages count as electives for Undergraduate Studies, valuable for all majors.

What if I studied Latin in high school (or another language for which there is no WebCAPE placement test)?

You do not need to take the WebCAPE test. Consider enrolling in any first year, first semester (101) course of your choice to begin earning language credits toward the B.A. if that is the degree you are seeking.

What if I place into SPA 201, for example? What course do I take at MSU and can I earn back credit for first-year Spanish?

You should enroll in SPA 201 (third semester) as soon as possible. Our policy is that if you earn an A or a B in your 201 course, then after completion, you can apply through the Department of Modern Languages for the six hours of back credit up to 201.

How many hours of credit can I receive from getting a high score on the WebCAPE exam?

If you place into the 301 or 302 level, you can receive up to 12 hours of credit (four courses: 101,102,201,202). HOWEVER, taking the placement test alone does not give you the credit. Our policy is that a student needs to enroll in the appropriate level course, complete it with a grade of an A or a B, then complete the application process to receive the back credit for the previous courses. For a high score, 12 credits is the maximum credit that can be earned in this way plus, of course, the three credits earned in actually taking the upper-level course.

Do transfer students need to take the language placement exam?

If you are planning on taking a foreign language class you need to take the WebCAPE to ensure that you will place into the correct level. If you are not taking a language class, you are still encouraged to take it so that you may take advantage of possibly earning credits for “university studies” requirements. It is best to discuss your specific situation with one of our faculty.

I encountered a problem while taking the placement exam. Do I have to start over?

If your placement exam was interrupted for some reason, you may resume the exam by returning to the exam site and entering your registration information exactly as before.

If you have a question that is not covered here, please contact the Department of Modern Languages.

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