Spanish with Writing: Levels 1 and 2

The Spanish with Writing exams measure skills gained from taking multiple semesters of Spanish, with an emphasis on listening, reading, and writing.

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Overview

The Spanish with Writing exam measures listening, reading, and writing skills taught in most first-year and second-year Spanish language courses at the college level. The exam contains multiple-choice questions that measure interpretive language skills (Listening and Reading) and two writing tasks that measure interpersonal and presentational communication.

Material taught during the first two 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.

Knowledge and Skills Required

The exam's subject matter is drawn from the following skills. The percentages next to the main topics indicate the approximate percentage of exam questions on that skill.

Section I (10%)
Listening: Rejoinders

Listening comprehension through short oral exchanges

Section II (20%)
Listening: Dialogues and Narratives

Listening comprehension through longer spoken selections

Section III (45%)
Reading

13% Part A. Discrete sentences
(vocabulary and structure)

15% Part B. Short cloze passages
(vocabulary and structure)

17% Part C. Reading passages and authentic stimulus materials
(reading comprehension)

Section IV (25%)
Writing

Writing: Interpersonal
Writing: Presentational

Exam Structure

The Spanish with Writing exam contains 100 multiple-choice questions to be answered in approximately 80 minutes and two writing tasks to be written in 30 minutes, for a total of approximately 110 minutes testing time.

Listening Sections

  • The listening section is approximately 27 minutes long.
  • The amount of time you 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.
  • Volume can be changed by using the Volume testing tool.
  • The audio portions of the listening sections are presented only once.

Reading Section

The reading section is approximately 50 minutes long.

Writing Section

The writing section includes two writing tasks that together are 30 minutes long. Scroll down to the Practice section of this page to view a video on how to use the Spanish with Writing toolbar when entering your writing tasks responses.

Task 1: Interpersonal writing—This writing task asks the student to write an e-mail to a friend, relative, or other acquaintance. The student has approximately 10 minutes to write the e-mail, and the response should contain at least 60 words.

Interpersonal Writing Directions: E-mail
For the following question, you will write an e-mail response. You have 10 minutes to read the question and write your response. Your response should be at least 60 words in length.

Para la siguiente pregunta, vas a escribir un mensaje electrónico. Vas a tener 10 minutos para leer la pregunta y escribir tu respuesta. Debes escribir un mínimo de 60 palabras.

Scoring Guide: Spanish with Writing Interpersonal Writing (E-mail Task)
Readers will assign scores based on the following scoring guide.

4 – A 4 writing sample demonstrates command in interpersonal writing.

A typical sample in this category

  • Appropriately addresses and completes the task with a relevant, well-developed treatment of the elements of the topic

  • Responds appropriately to all or almost all parts of the writing task in a well-organized, generally cohesive response

  • Includes generally accurate social and/or cultural references

  • Contains

    • evidence of control of a variety of structures and idioms, although a few grammatical errors may occur, and good to very good control of elementary structures

    • considerable breadth of vocabulary

    • conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) are generally correct

    • a consistent register

3 – A 3 writing sample demonstrates competence in interpersonal writing.

A typical sample in this category

  • Addresses and completes the task with a relevant treatment of the elements of the topic

  • Responds adequately to most parts of the writing task in an organized response with adequate cohesiveness

  • Includes generally appropriate social and/or cultural references

  • Contains

    • some grammatical errors

    • vocabulary is appropriate but may have occasional interference from another language

    • some errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation)

    • a generally consistent register

2 – A 2 writing sample approaches competence in interpersonal writing.

A typical sample in this category

  • Partially addresses or partially completes the task but may have some irrelevant treatment of the elements of the topic

  • Responds inappropriately to some parts of the writing task and may have inadequate organization

  • May include inaccurate social and/or cultural references

  • Contains

    • frequent grammatical errors that may occur even in elementary structures; there may be some redeeming features, such as correct advanced structures

    • limited vocabulary; frequent interference from another language may occur

    • frequent errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) may be present

    • an inconsistent register

1 - A 1 writing demonstrates a lack of competence in interpersonal writing.

A typical sample in this category

  • Does not complete the task; irrelevant elements predominate

  • Responds inappropriately to most parts of the writing task

  • Includes inaccurate social and/or cultural references

  • Contains

    • numerous grammatical errors that impede communication

    • insufficient vocabulary; constant interference from another language

    • pervasive errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) that may interfere with written communication

    • minimal to no attention to register

0 - A writing sample that receives this score is a restatement of the topic, does not provide evidence of sufficient language to merit a score of 1, is completely irrelevant to the topic, is written in a language other than Spanish, or is completely blank.

Task 2: Presentational writing—The second writing task asks the student to write a composition on a given topic. The student has approximately 20 minutes to write the composition, and the response should contain at least 100 words.

Each writing task is scored based on the content and grammatical accuracy of the response.

Presentational Writing: Composition
For the following question, you will write a composition based on a given situation. You will have 20 minutes to read the task and write your composition. Your response should be at least 100 words in length.

Para la siguiente pregunta, vas a escribir una composición sobre un tema dado. Vas a tener 20 minutos para leer la pregunta y escribir tu respuesta. Debes escribir un mínimo de 100 palabras.

Scoring Guide: Spanish with Writing Presentational Writing (Composition Task)
Readers will assign scores based on the following scoring guide.

4 – A 4 writing sample demonstrates good to very good command in written expression.

A typical sample in this category

  • Demonstrates relevant and well-developed treatment of the topic
  • Provides required information
  • Includes a well-organized structure
  • Contains
    • evidence of control of a variety of structures and idioms, although a few grammatical errors may occur, and good to very good control of elementary structures
    • considerable breadth of vocabulary
    • conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) are generally correct

3 – A 3 writing sample demonstrates basic to good command in written expression.

A typical sample in this category

  • Demonstrates relevant treatment of the topic
  • Provides most required information
  • Includes adequate organization
  • Contains
    • some grammatical errors
    • vocabulary is appropriate but may have occasional interference from another language
    • some errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation)

2 – The writing sample approaches competence in written expression.

A typical sample in this category

  • Includes a response that may be relevant to the topic but may be partial or incomplete
  • May have inadequate organization
  • Contains
    • frequent grammatical errors that may occur even in elementary structures; there may be some redeeming features, such as correct advanced structures
    • limited vocabulary; frequent interference from another language may occur
    • frequent errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) may be present

1 – The writing sample demonstrates a lack of competence in written expression.

A typical sample in this category

  • Includes a response that may be minimally related to the topic and provides little required information
  • May have a disorganized structure
  • Contains
    • numerous grammatical errors that impede communication, and/or sentence fragments
    • insufficient vocabulary; constant interference from another language
    • pervasive errors in conventions of the written language (orthography, paragraphing, and punctuation) that may interfere with written communication

0 – A writing sample that receives this score is a restatement of the topic, does not provide evidence of sufficient language to merit a score of 1, is completely irrelevant to the topic, is written in a language other than Spanish, or is completely blank.

Score Information

Responses to the exam's writing tasks are scored twice monthly by college Spanish faculty from throughout the country via an online scoring system. Each of the two writing tasks is scored independently by at least two different readers, and the scores are then combined. View the Spanish with Writing Scoring and Score Availability Dates page for more information.

The multiple-choice section score (75%) and writing score (25%) are then combined to yield the test taker’s exam score. The resulting combined score is reported as a single scaled score between 20 and 80. Separate scores aren't reported for the multiple-choice and writing sections.

ACE Recommendation for Spanish with Writing

Level 1
Credit-granting Score 50
Semester Hours 6
Level 2
Credit-granting Score 65
Semester Hours 12

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.

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2022 CLEP Official Study Guide

This study guide provides practice questions for all 34 CLEP exams. The ideal resource for taking more than one exam. Offered only by College Board.

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