ACTFL Proficiency Level Overview

Communicates at word level; communication must be prompted Low Middle High 25 -50 words, characterized by lists Can use memorized phrases, 50+ 50% of the time at the Intermediate and some memorized phrases words, may be hard to understand. level: Some sentences, beginning to Still no creative language. recombine memorized phrases.

Communicates at sentence level; communicates autonomously Low Middle High Can manage in predictable Can speak in sentences. Can 50% of the time at the Advanced situations, producing at least a manage informal settings and level: describing and narrating in sentence at a time. Creates predictable situations (shopping, all time frames in paragraph-length personalized meaning with the restaurant). discourse but not consistently. language.

Communicates at paragraph level; develops well-formed narratives with internal logic Low Middle High Can narrate and describe in all time Can narrate and describe in all time 50% of the time at the Superior frames in paragraph-length frames in paragraph-length level: supporting opinions and discourse talking about self and discourse talking about self and hypothesizing in extended others with minimal coherence and others with broader range of discourse with no patterned errors. cohesion. cohesive devices.

Proficiency Baseline levels
Proficiency Level Advanced-low Intermediate-high Intermediate-mid Intermediate-low Academic Settings / Learner levels K-12 Language teacher, Undergraduate language majors with a year of study abroad Undergraduate language majors without a study abroad experience AP High School students, College students after 4-6 semesters High School students after 4 years, College students after 2 semesters Other professional settings Physician, Police Officer, Military Linguist, Billing Clerk Aviation Personnel, Receptionist, Missionary Tour Guide, Cashier, Sales Clerk

Targeted High School Proficiency levels
Year AP 4 3 2 Throughout Year Intermediate Mid Intermediate Low Novice High, approaching Intermediate Low Novice Mid End of Year Intermediate Mid, approaching Intermediate High Intermediate Low, approaching intermediate Mid Intermediate Low Novice High

Notes by Michele Whaley, organized by Nathan Black.

Sources Rifkin, Benjamin, Dean of Culture & Society at the College of New Jersey. "Workshop on Proficiency Oriented Instruction for Anchorage School District." Anchorage School District Russian Language Program Summer Academy Workshop with Benjamin Rifkin. Dimond High School. June 2010. Lecture. "The ACTFL Guidelines." The ACTFL Guidelines. ACTFL, 15 Sept. 1998. Web. 20 Aug. 2010. < TheACTFLGuidelines.htm>. “Oral Proficiency Levels in the Work World.” ACTFL, 2002. Web. 23 Aug. 2010. <>