Spanish Language: Levels 1 and 2

The Spanish Language exams measure skills acquired from multiple semesters of studying Spanish.

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The Spanish Language exam is designed to measure knowledge and ability equivalent to that of students who have completed one to two years of college Spanish language study.

Material taught during both years is incorporated into a single exam, covering both Level 1 and Level 2 content. A test taker's proficiency level is dependent on the test score.

Exam Structure

The exam contains approximately 121 questions to be answered in approximately 90 minutes. Some of these are pretest questions that won’t be scored. There are three separately timed sections. The three sections are weighted so that each question contributes equally to the total score.

There are two listening sections and one reading section. Each section has its own timing requirements.

Listening Sections

  • The two listening sections together are approximately 30 minutes long.
  • The amount of time you'll have to answer a question varies according to the section and doesn’t include the time you spend listening to the test material.
  • Timing begins after the section directions are dismissed.
  • You can change the volume by using the Volume testing tool.
  • The audio portions of the listening sections will be presented only once.

Reading Section

  • The reading section is 60 minutes long.

Knowledge and Skills Required

Questions on the Spanish Language exam require test takers to comprehend written and spoken Spanish. The subject matter is drawn from the abilities described below. The percentages next to the main topics indicate the approximate percentage of exam questions on each.

Section I (15%)
Listening: Rejoinders

Listening comprehension through short oral exchanges. Choose the response that most logically continues or completes each conversation. You’ll have 10 seconds to choose your response before the next conversation begins.

Section II (25%)
Listening: Dialogues and Narratives

Listening comprehension through longer spoken selections. You’ll hear a series of selections, such as dialogues, announcements, and narratives. Each audio selection is accompanied by a graphic or picture and is followed by one or more questions.

The questions have various formats. Some questions offer four possible responses, each with an oval to click to indicate your answer. Other questions ask you to select part of a graphic, fill out a table, or put a list in the correct order. For some of these questions, you’ll have to click in more than one place to complete your response. Be sure to follow the specific directions for each question.

You’ll have a total of 12 minutes to answer the questions in this section. Note: The timer is activated only when you’re answering questions.

In this section, you may adjust the volume only when a question is on your screen. It will affect the volume of the next audio prompt you hear. You can't change the volume while the audio prompt is playing.

Section III (60%)

16% Part A: Discrete sentences (vocabulary and structure)

Each incomplete statement is followed by four suggested completions. Select the one that is best in each case by clicking on the corresponding oval.

20% Part B: Short cloze passages (vocabulary and structure)

In each paragraph, there are blanks indicating that words or phrases have been omitted. When a blank is shaded, four completions are provided. First, read through the entire paragraph. Then, for each blank, choose the best completion, given the context for the entire paragraph.

24% Part C: Reading passages and authentic stimulus materials (reading comprehension)

Each selection is followed by one or more questions, incomplete statements, or commands. For each question or incomplete statement, select the best answer or completion. For each command, click the appropriate area of the screen according to the directions given.

Score Information

ACE Recommendation for Spanish Language

Level 1
Credit-granting Score 50
Semester Hours 6
Level 2
Credit-granting Score 63
Semester Hours 9

Note: Each institution reserves the right to set its own credit-granting policy, which may differ from the American Council on Education (ACE). Contact your college to find out the score required for credit and the number of credit hours granted.

Add Study Guides

CLEP Spanish Language and Spanish with Writing Examination Guide

This guide provides practice questions for the CLEP Spanish Language (Levels 1 and 2) and Spanish with Writing (Levels 1 and 2) Exams.

  • PDF
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Study Resources: Spanish Language

A study plan and list of online resources.


Sample Questions: Spanish Language and Spanish with Writing

Answer sample questions related to Spanish Language exams.


ACE Credit Recommendations

Recommendations for credit-granting scores from the American Council on Education.