The 5 Ws of Spanish Placement

On this page we answer some common questions about the Spanish placement exam and process.


All students on the Atlanta campus who want to study Spanish (and most of those who want to study Portuguese) must take the online placement exam. This includes those who have never studied Spanish, those continuing from Oxford who didn’t take a Spanish class on that campus, heritage speakers and native speakers… in short, ALL students!


The online exam consists of a short survey about your previous experience with Spanish and a series of multiple-choice questions that takes about 20-25 minutes to complete.

When completing the survey portion of the exam, to ensure that our notification system doesn't reject yours, please enter

  • your name exactly as it appears on your Emory records
  • a whole number to indicate how many years you studied Spanish in high school; for example, if you took Spanish for 2.5 years, round up to 3
  • your seven-digit Emory student ID number, e.g., don't use your OPUS login

When you click “submit” after taking the exam, you receive an automated score: CCCC, PPPP, FFFF or 9999. These scores DO NOT indicate which courses you should take in our department; that information will be emailed to you. You can also access your placement information in the Communications section of the OPUS Student Center.


Here's a link to the Spanish Placement Exam.

Take the Test


New students wishing to enroll in a Spanish class for fall 2018 must take the placement exam by August 1st. The placement exam will remain accessible through our website, but results may not be processed in time for fall enrollment.

Students who miss the August 1st deadline may use their Spanish placement results to enroll in a Portuguese course or plan to take Spanish in the spring (111, 212 or Foundational Course), during the summer (101-102 and 201-202 will be offered online, and all levels will be taught as part of our summer study abroad programs), or during the fall of 2019. 


We use this online placement process because…

  1. We want to streamline an enrollment process that serves hundreds of students every year, and we have found this system to be the most efficient.
  2. We want to ensure that all students enroll in courses that challenge them to advance in their study of the language. Therefore, students should never enroll in Spanish courses with a number lower than that indicated in their OSP. Our teachers will use level-checks the first week of classes to confirm placements and recommend changes if necessary.
  3. We want to reserve Spanish 101 for students who didn’t study any Spanish in high school.
  4. We want to place students who transfer AP or IB credit to Emory in the right level, which will either be Spanish 212 or our Foundational Course level (300-318).
  5. We want to help students with previous experience with Spanish choose the right Portuguese course. Students who finish Spanish 212 or place into a Spanish Foundational Course may register for PORT 110: Portuguese for Spanish Speakers. Combining SPAN 212 or higher with PORT 110 is a unique way of satisfying Emory’s HAL requirement with courses in two different languages, and we are the only language program to have been granted such approval by Emory College of Arts and Sciences.


For more information about Spanish placement, please contact Prof. Robyn Clarke, Director of the Spanish Language Program and Director of Placement, at