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Foreign Language Requirements & Placement Exams

Foreign language requirements are different for each degree type (B.A., B.S., B.F.A. and B.M.) and catalog year. This page includes information about the language requirements for each major and how to take the placement exam if you plan to study Spanish, French or German at Biola.

Students are strongly encouraged to satisfy their foreign language requirement during their freshman and sophomore years.

Foreign Language Requirements

Foreign language requirements vary by degree type. Refer to the information below to determine the language requirements for your program.

For a full description of the language requirements and placement policies, refer to the Biola catalog.

View Detailed Foreign Language Requirements

B.S. Degree

  • Language credits needed: 4
  • Requirements may be met in the following ways:
    • 4 credits are waived with 2+ years of the same language in high school (middle school level is not accepted)
    • 4 credits of a college-level language course (AP, CLEP, IB, ACTFL and transfer courses accepted*)

B.A. Degree

  • Language credits needed: 8
  • Requirements may be met in the following ways:
    • 8 credits of college-level language courses (AP, CLEP, IB, ACTFL and transfer courses accepted*)

B.M. and B.F.A. Degrees

  • Language credits needed: 0

Note: Exempt from the foreign language requirement.

ALP Program

  • Language credits needed: 8
  • Requirements may be met in the following ways:
    • The Accelerated Learning Placement (ALP) program meets the language requirements for all B.A. and B.S. majors (ENGL 102 and ENGL 104).

Note: ALP is a requirement for select students, but also has an opt-in option for multilingual students. Contact for more information.

Need help confirming your degree type? Check the Programs Offered page in the Biola Catalog to confirm your degree type.

*Refer to the Transfer Students and Transfer Credit Policies section in the Biola catalog for information about how to meet your language requirement(s) through AP, IB, CLEP, ACTFL and college/university credit.

Multilingual Students

Students fluent in a language other than English are subject to the requirements necessary for their degree type. If a student is admitted to Biola in the ALP program, they will fulfill the requirement with the ALP courses. Otherwise, multilingual students can opt in to the ALP program or fulfill the requirement in the following ways under the 2023–24 catalog:

  • ALP Program (ENGL 102 & ENGL 104 for 8 credits)
  • Language courses taken at Biola
  • Language credit transferred into Biola
  • College credit via a standardized assessments such as Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), CLEP and ACTFL*
    *ACTFL offers college credit for language proficiency through standardized testing. Review the ACTFL requirements in the catalog for information on what placement scores are accepted for credit.

Contact the Department of Modern Languages at for more questions about earning credit for language fluency.

French, German and Spanish Placement Exams

Students who intend to fulfill the language requirement with Spanish, German or French should complete an online placement exam if they have previously studied the language. The Department of Modern Languages may require students who enroll at the wrong level to change to an appropriate level.

You do not need to take this exam if you have no prior history of study in your chosen language.


Placement Exam Instructions

  • Register for the exam using your email
  • Set aside one hour for the exam (it will likely not take this long)
  • Exam is taken in one sitting
  • Closed book; no additional resources allowed
  • Additional attempts will incur fees

Complete Language Placement Exam


Testing Notes

  • Upon completion, if you receive a note that indicates "Contact the Modern Languages Dept. for further evaluation," please connect with the Department of Modern Languages at to confirm your placement level.
  • The Department of Modern Languages recommends taking the placement exam as soon as possible. Depending on your score, you may need to meet with a professor to confirm placement before you can register for a language class.
  • Continuing Students: The placement test is not linked to the registration system at Biola and test scores need to be manually inputted to give access to register for 200-level courses or higher. We cannot guarantee that you will be able to register for the class that you placed into if you take the test within 48 hours of your registration window.

Contact Us

Contact the Department of Modern Languages at Please include your student ID and use your Biola email address when reaching out for support.

Note: The Department of Modern Languages has limited office hours during the summer months of June and July. Refer to the office hours on the Department of Modern Languages website.