Test Scheduling Instructions

Schedule

Chinese Proficiency Tests

Overview

All Flagship programs are required by our funders to assess the progress of all participants. The following are the tests that are part of the overall assessment plan, which is administered in cooperation between Brigham Young University Flagship Center and the American Councils for International Education. Please see the current testing schedule as linked above for which tests are required and which are optional.

ACTFL-OPI: Oral Proficiency Interview

ACTFL OPI is an assessment of functional speaking ability, independent of any specific curriculum. The ACTFL OPI takes the form of a carefully structured conversation between a trained and certified interviewer and the person whose speaking proficiency is being assessed. The interview is interactive and continuously adapts to the speaking abilities of the individual being tested. The topics that are discussed during the interview are based on the interests and experiences of the test candidate.

Through a series of personalized questions, the interviewer elicits from the test candidate examples of his or her ability to handle the communication tasks specified for each level of proficiency in order to establish a clear 'floor' and 'ceiling' of consistent functional ability. Often candidates are asked to take part in a role-play. This task provides the opportunity for linguistic functions not easily elicited through the conversational format.

The ten proficiency levels are:

Superior Intermediate Mid
Advanced High Intermediate Low
Advanced Mid Novice High
Advanced Low Novice Mid
Intermediate High Novice Low

In order to schedule an appointment, you will need to contact the program testing coordinator at flagship_assessment@byu.edu with at least your TWO choices of date and time. When one of the choices is secured, the testing coordinator will notify you via email. To select this requested time slot of yours, please follow the instruction below:

Read more on the test provider website: http://www.languagetesting.com/oral-proficiency-interview-opi

The ACTFL-OPI is taken by all students at least twice. First as part of the overseas capstone admissions process (arranged by American Councils) and as and exit exam at the end of the overseas capstone experience (arranged by the the BYU Flagship Center). The later is done within a month of completing the program and can be arranged by contact the assessment assistant at flagship_assessment@byu.edu

ACTFL-WPT: Writing Proficiency Test

The Writing Proficiency Test is delivered via the web, and consists of a number of prompts, which are customized to reflect the interests and experience of the test-taker. The candidate is presented with four to five prompts for written responses dealing with practical, social and professional topics that are familiar to the individual and of general and/or cultural relevance, encountered in both formal and informal contexts. The responses are assessed by certified ACTFL raters, and results provided against the ACTFL scale. The test takes 60-80 minutes, depending on the range of proficiency being assessed.

The ten proficiency levels are:

Superior Intermediate Mid
Advanced High Intermediate Low
Advanced Mid Novice High
Advanced Low Novice Mid
Intermediate High Novice Low

WPTs are always administered in a proctored environment during a testing window pre-determined by your program administration. Please contact the testing coordinator at flagship_assessment@byu.edu to find out the upcoming testing windows.

BYU ART—Chinese and BYU ALT—Chinese Reading & Listening Tests

BYU ART (Adaptive Reading Test) and BYU ALT (Adaptive Listening Test), formerly called the ACTFL-BYU tests, were developed at Brigham Young University in cooperation with ACTFL and with additional support from DLNSEO.

The ART has two forms: one for traditional characters and one for simplified. However, at the higher levels both forms contain a mix of both traditional and simplified characters, based on the assumption that to have higher-level reading proficiency is to command both forms as they are presented to the reader.

ART and ALT are computer adaptive, criterion referenced, and internet deliverable. In addition to the ACTFL ratings, they include a notation to show trends toward the next level as follows: For ease of description, progress within a proficiency level is described using the mnemonic “REDS”, where:

  • R stands for Random ability – or a score that is at or below the level of random guessing.
  • E stands for Emerging ability – or a score that is at least one item better than chance, but does not exceeded getting half of the items correct.
  • D stands for Developing skills – or the ability to answer more than half of the items correctly, but not be able to sustain that level of performance at least 70% of the time.
  • S stands for Sustained ability. Using the ILR scale, there is a single threshold score of 70% that represents the lower qualifying boundary for sustained performance at that level. In the ACTFL scale, 70% qualifies for a sustained rating of “Low” and 80% is required for a sustained rating of “Mid”. By definition, it is not possible to earn an ILR “Plus” or an ACTFL “High” sublevel rating unless one shows both sustained ability at that level and developing skills at the next higher level.
Learn more

The ten proficiency levels are:

Superior Intermediate Mid
Advanced High Intermediate Low
Advanced Mid Novice High
Advanced Low Novice Mid
Intermediate High Novice Low

BYU ART and BYU ALT must be administered in a proctored environment by a pre-approved proctor. The approved proctor will receive the Proctor Guideline, which include the detailed testing instructions and troubleshooting information from the BYU Chinese Flagship Center. Please contact your proctor to get the detailed registration and testing information.

ACTFL-OPIc: Oral Proficiency Interview by Computer

The OPIc is an internet delivered test which provides valid and reliable oral proficiency testing on a large scale. It was developed in response to the increased worldwide demand for the testing of oral language proficiency. The computer delivered assessment emulates the ‘live’ OPI, but delivery of questions is through a carefully designed computer program, and via a virtual avatar. Thus the test can be taken on demand, and at at a time convenient to the candidate and proctor.

The OPIc structure is based on one of three test forms:

  • Form 1 – targets proficiency levels Novice Low through Novice High, though any rating from Novice Low through Intermediate Low can be assigned to a sample that is elicited using Form 1.
  • Form 2 – targets proficiency levels Novice High through Intermediate Mid though any rating from Novice Low through Advanced can be assigned to a sample that is elicited using Form 2.
  • Form 3 – targets proficiency levels Intermediate Mid through Advanced, though any rating from Novice Low through Advanced can be assigned to a sample that is elicited using Form 3.

The ten proficiency levels are:

Superior Intermediate Mid
Advanced High Intermediate Low
Advanced Mid Novice High
Advanced Low Novice Mid
Intermediate High Novice Low

American Councils will be administering the OPIc. The OPI-c is has not yet been approved as an official alternative to the standard ACTFL-OPI by the full Flagship assessment group. It is used by some programs internally as an additional tracking tracking tool.

American Councils Overseas Listening and Reading Tests

These two tests are online and will be scheduled through American Councils (AC) as pre- and post capstone assessments, and are a required part of the admissions process for the overseas capstone program. These tests are online and will be scheduled through American Councils (AC). They must be administered in a proctored environment by an approved proctor. Please contact your testing coordinator at flagship_assessment@byu.edu or AC coordinators Linda Larsen at llarsen@americancouncils.org or Vivian Hou at vhou@americancouncils.org for the detailed information regarding upcoming designated testing windows, registration, and other testing instructions.

HSK

Overview

The Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi, also known as HSK or the Chinese Proficiency Test, is a national standardized test designed and developed to assess the Chinese language proficiency of non-native speakers including foreigners, overseas Chinese and students from Chinese national minorities. Supervised by the Office of Chinese Language Council International (also known as Hanban) under the PRC Ministry of Education, HSK is held regularly in China and other countries each year.

The new HSK consists of two independent parts: written test and oral test. The written test can be divided into six levels from HSK-Level 1 to HSK-Level 6. As a test of general language proficiency, HSK is differentiated by six new levels of difficulty, while the oral test can be divided into three levels of HSK (Basic), HSK (Elementary-Intermediate), HSK (Advanced), and the candidates’ on-site performance will be recorded.

The HSK can be done at authorized testing centers in China and outside. The Nanjing Flagship Center is working on a plan to provide each HSK to each capstone student at the end of the program.

HSK Website