Desktop Schools Popup

Bilingual and Multilingual Seals and Certificates

Eagan High School Spanish teacher Jose Martinez works with a student.

Learning through the exploration of culture and language 

The study of world languages provides students with a comprehensive education and the worldwide perspective necessary to become global citizens. According to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, language learning supports academic achievement, provides cognitive benefits and affects attitudes and beliefs about language learning and about other cultures. It is recommended that students take a minimum of three to four years of uninterrupted study of one of the languages offered in order to:

  • Increase proficiency in the language;
  • Ensure they are eligible to apply to the college of their choice and are prepared for college-level language study, and
  • Fulfill college entrance and exit requirements (some colleges).

Students are invited and encouraged to study more than one language.

Bilingual and Multilingual Seals and World Language Certificates

Bilingual and Multilingual Seals and World Language Certificates are provided to high school graduates who demonstrate the required levels of language proficiency in speaking, writing, reading and listening for languages other than English, including American Sign Language (ASL) and American Indian 
(indigenous) languages in grades 10, 11 and 12, regardless of how the language was learned. (Bilingual and multilingual seals are awarded upon graduation. World language proficiency certificates can be awarded when students meet proficiency requirements.)
 

To achieve a seal or certificate, students must satisfactorily complete all required English Language Arts credits and demonstrate proficiency in another language through language proficiency assessments approved by the Minnesota Department of Education. The assessments are an online test of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. The state-approved assessments are:

  • American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), Assessment of Performance toward Proficiency in Languages (AAPPL) Arabic, Mandarin (Simplified and Traditional), French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai, and 
  • Standards-based Measurement of Proficiency Assessments (STAMP) Arabic, French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin (Simplified and Traditional), Polish, Brazilian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Testing dates and locations for the 2019-20 school year are:

Apple Valley High School – April 7, 2020
Contacts: David Swanson

Eagan High School – April 7, 2020
Contacts: Janelle Graham or Dena Thorson

Eastview High School – April 7, 2020
Contacts: Elizabeth Perona or Kristine Valdivia

Rosemount High School – March 12, 2020
Contacts: Jennifer Boldus or Heather Nyseth

School of Environmental Studies – March 17, 2020
Contact: Stephanie Steinbron

Cultural Family Advocates – Milca Dominguez or Alix Grande

At this time the assessments are open to grade 12 students interested in earning the World Language Certificate or Bilingual/Multilingual Seal. To register for the AAPPL Measure or STAMP, please complete the online registration and submit payment online using FeePay. 

Registration through FeePay will be available Sept. 9, 2019 through Feb. 17, 2020.

World languages in District 196

French

German

Japanese

Mandarin (Simplified and Traditional)

Spanish

Frequently asked questions

What does proficiency mean?

According to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, proficiency is described as what one can do with language in real-world situations in a spontaneous and unrehearsed context in the four modalities of reading, listening, speaking and writing. Within each modality, proficiency is classified within the continuum of novice, intermediate, advanced, superior and distinguished. These ranges are further divided by low, mid and high levels. Proficiency takes time and progress varies from individual to individual.

An individual may perform in various ranges of proficiency in distinct modalities but must demonstrate consistency across all modalities to receive specific classifications. For example, one may demonstrate a proficiency of intermediate-mid in reading and listening and intermediate-low in speaking and writing. In this case, the individual would be considered at an intermediate–low proficiency.

How is proficiency assessed?

In District 196 students must be enrolled in grade 12 when being assessed for a seal. They must attain a certain score on the ACTFL Assessment of Performance toward Proficiency (AAPPL) and Avant STAndards-based Measurement of Proficiency (STAMP 4S) that correlates to the ACTFL levels needed for each level of recognition. View a demo of the AAPPL Measure (students should choose Form B for the demo). View a demo of the STAMP assessment.

How will students know if they are ready for a proficiency test?

It takes a long time to develop proficiency in a language. The time it takes to reach each level varies from individual to individual. There are many different factors that play a role in developing language proficiency such as where, how, when, and why a person learns a language.

Is there a cost for an assessment or to apply for a certificate or seal?

Families are responsible for the cost of the assessments. Payments can be submitted through Infinite Campus or Fee Pay. Scholarships based on financial need may be available at the high school. There will be no additional charge to have a seal noted in the high school transcript.

  • AP Language & Culture assessment is $65.
  • The AAPPL assessment is $40.
  • The STAMP assessment is $25.

How does the state of Minnesota recognize students' proficiency achievements?

Students who achieve the intermediate-low level of proficiency in the four modalities (listening, speaking, reading and writing) will earn a Minnesota World Language Proficiency Certificate, which will be noted on their transcript.

Students who achieve the intermediate-high level of proficiency in the four modalities in one language will earn the Minnesota Bilingual Gold Seal on their high school transcript. Students who reach this level of proficiency in the four modalities in two languages will earn the Minnesota Multilingual Gold Seal on their high school transcript.

Students who reach the advanced-low level of proficiency in the four modalities in one language will earn the Minnesota Bilingual Platinum Seal on their high school diploma. Students who reach this level of proficiency in the four modalities in two languages will earn a notation on the Minnesota Multilingual Platinum Seal on their high school transcript.

If a student is a native speaker or proficient in a language other than English, can that student get a certificate or seal in his/her native language?

Yes, if:
 
  • The student satisfactorily completes all required English Language Arts credits (seal only);
  • The student demonstrates proficiency in another language through a language proficiency assessment approved by the Minnesota Department of Education, and
  • The student is in grade 12.
Language proficiency testing is currently available for the languages of Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. Opportunities to collaborate with area language schools and community experts are available to develop language proficiency assessments for languages in which no state-approved language proficiency assessment is available. For additional information, please contact Amy Denneson, teaching and learning coordinator, by emailing Amy.Denneson@district196.org.

Are there any other requirements?

In accordance with Minnesota Statute 120B.022, students must also “satisfactorily complete all required English Language Arts credits” to “demonstrate mastery of Minnesota’s English language proficiency standards” in order to receive a seal at the intermediate-high and advanced-low levels. 

What kind of documentation do students receive for the World Language Certificate or Bilingual/Multilingual Seals?

All students will receive a letter with the test results from District 196.

Students who earn the World Language Proficiency Certificate or the Bilingual/Multilingual Seal will have a notation entered on their transcript and will receive the certificate or seal created by the Minnesota Department of Education.

Can students receive college credit for their language certificate or seal?

Yes. Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) award college credit for World Language Proficiency Certificates and Bilingual/Multilingual Seals. Minnesota legislation states that a student must be enrolled in a Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) institution and must request college credits for the seal or proficiency certificate within three academic years after graduating from high school. Students should consult with their adviser at a college. Students’ high school transcript will serve as a proof of their proficiency attainment.

Colleges outside of the MnSCU system will use their own guidelines to evaluate a student’s language proficiency.

Are there any additional resources?

Resources for Minnesota bilingual and multilingual seals and certificates include the following: