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Speaking Self Assessment 

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To get a general idea of your level, using the ACTFL Proficiency scale, read the following descriptions and watch the videos featuring Oral Proficiency Interview in English to determine the level that most closely matches your own speaking ability in the foreign language. Please note that self-assessment is not a very reliable tool, nor is it a substitute for a real Oral Proficiency Test. It can only give you a very general idea about your proficiency level.

ACTFL Level Description
Novice I can only say what I have memorized in my language courses.

Intermediate I can use the language to talk about familiar topics related to daily life. I can ask and answer simple questions and handle straightforward situations. I generally speak in simple discrete sentences.

Advanced I can take an active part with a degree of fluency and spontaneity in discussions with native speakers on familiar topics, expressing and supporting my views.

Superior I can can converse with ease, accuracy, and fluency about a variety of topics in formal and informal settings. I can discuss my interests and fields of competence, explain complex matters in detail, provide lengthy and coherent narrations and provide structured arguments to support my opinions.

Distinguished I am an educated and articulate speaker of the language. I can discuss a broad range of global issues and highly abstract concepts in a culturally authentic manner by tailoring my speech to a variety of audiences.

 

To get a general idea of your writing level, using the ACTFL Proficiency scale for writing, read the following descriptions to determine the level that most closely matches your own writing ability in the foreign language. Please note that self-assessment is not a very reliable tool, nor is it a substitute for a real Oral Proficiency Test. It can only give you a very general idea about your proficiency level.

ACTFL Level Description
Novice I can write words, phrases, and formulaic expressions to convey simple messages, relying on familiar or learned material.
Intermediate I can write simple messages, notes, letters, ask for and answer requests for information, using basic vocabulary and grammatical constructions.
Advanced I can write routine informal and some formal correspondence, e.g., business letters and professional reports, with good grammatical and lexical accuracy.
Superior I can write most kinds of formal and informal correspondence, in-depth summaries, reports, and research papers on a variety of social, academic, and professional topics with a high degree of control of grammar and precision of vocabulary.
Distinguished I am a sophisticated and skilled writer of the language. I can write analytically on complex professional, academic, and societal issues with subtlety and nuance, tailoring my language to the readers. I can handle a variety of genres.

4 Responses to Speaking Self Assessment

  1. Erin

    Love it!
    Great comparison.

    Erin
    Language Coach
    ILR OPI Tester

     
  2. Andy

    This is a wonderful resource! The one that I have used in the past has always been the ILR, but I find that I am more in the middle between 3-5. Here I feel I am more defined. Thanks for sharing!

     
    • Irene Thompson

      We like your website and your language learning tips. Take a look at a really old book that is still relevant entitled “How to be a More Successful Language Learner”. We wrote it eons ago to help learners go about acquiring an L2. It was written in a pre-technology days, unfortunately, but your tips are good for the new e-learning age.

       

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