NOTE: This information is for students on the 2022-2023 Bulletin or earlier. As of 2023-2024, the Language Core requirement was updated and no longer involves proficiency exams. 

For students completing undergraduate degree requirements in the 2022-23 Bulletin or a prior Bulletin, the Language Proficiency Exam is one option for fulfilling the university’s language graduation requirement. (This would typically include students who plan to graduate in Spring 2026 or earlier.) 

Students entering in Fall 2023 or later will graduate under the 2023-24 Bulletin (or a later Bulletin) and will not need to demonstrate language proficiency in the same way.

Undergraduate degree requirements are found on the following Bulletin pages:

2022-23 Bulletin           pages 10-13 

2021-22 Bulletin           pages 10-12

2020-21 Bulletin           pages 8-10

2019-20 Bulletin           pages 8-10

View prior Bulletins.

Note that the Language Proficiency Exam is not a placement exam; students are placed into the appropriate level of language classes at Puget Sound by their faculty academic advisors or after consulting with professors who teach that language. If you are unsure which language class you should take, please contact your advisor.

Likewise, the exam does not fulfill departmental language requirements; students who pass the Language Proficiency Exam can test out of the university’s language graduation requirement by demonstrating prior competence and do not plan on taking any language courses at the university.

Although the structure of the exam differs slightly according to the language, every exam measures students’ proficiency in reading, listening, and grammar. Students who successfully pass the exam typically either have 3-4 years of high-level high school coursework in the language, have studied abroad, or are a native speaker of the language. Students are permitted up to one retake; if after two attempts students are unable to pass the exam, we will recommend that they enroll in an introductory language class.

If you have questions or would like to take a Language Proficiency Exam, please contact the CWL at or at 253.879.3404. All students should consult with their academic advisor about completing degree requirements.