Spanish Placement Exam

All students taking their first college-level Spanish course are required to take a placement exam before registering for Spanish courses. Exams for incoming freshmen will be held during the summer at New Student Registration.

The College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

The CLEP provides students the option of earning college credit without enrolling in college courses. USF is an institutional-testing center which means USF officials provide CLEP testing for students and former students.

Students may earn up to 32 semester hours of credit toward a USF degree through CLEP. CLEP will be allowed only for the special subject examinations and only for scores equivalent to the grade of 'C' or better. No grades will be indicated for CLEP credit on students' transcripts other than "Pass."

CLEP testing is administered through the Academic Success Center (ASC). Individuals must schedule an appointment to take a computer-based CLEP exam by contacting the ASC at 331-6740 or

The cost to complete a CLEP exam is $87 to be paid by credit or debit card at the time of registration. Prior to beginning a CLEP exam at USF, students must pay a $30 administration fee per test. If students pass a CLEP exam, no additional charges will be incurred for transcription of the credits to USF.

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The specific CLEP subject examinations allowed for Spanish and the corresponding USF course credits that can be earned are as follows:

  • College Spanish (Levels 1 and 2)
  • SPA 101 and 102: First and Second Semester Spanish (8 credits)
  • SPA 201 and 202: Third and Fourth Semester Spanish (6 credits)


Credit for Prior Spanish Learning

As approved by the USF Faculty in November of 2007, students who have earned a "B" or better in both Spanish 201 and 202 at USF may transcribe credits for Spanish 101 and 102 without additional (CLEP) testing. A $15 per credit transcription fee is assessed for each credit earned through the "B" or better policy: $60 for SPA101, $60 for SPA102.

Those students who have extensive prior learning experiences and wish to begin their Spanish studies at the 300 level should take the CLEP exam, unless they have credit for Spanish 101 through 202 through a College Board Advanced Placement Exam in Spanish Language or have those credits transferred from another university.

Questions about Credit for Prior Spanish Learning

I've passed SPA 102 with a 'B' or better, why can't I use this policy to transcribe credit for SPA101?

For two reasons:

  1. SPA101/102 is a fundamental introduction to Spanish grammar, vocabulary, and Hispanic cultures. SPA201/202, while not covering these topics in the same sequence, builds on that foundation by reviewing the same topics while offering a more challenging level of reading and communication. We can safely presume that a student who has shown strong performance in both 201/202 has fulfilled the objectives of both SPA101/102. But we cannot divide 101/102 and 201/202 experience into semesters because the sequence of topics is not the same.
  2. The Credit for Prior Learning Policy is designed to facilitate advanced placement in a 201/202 course. Students who have had 3-4 years of challenging high school instruction are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity and maximize their learning at minimal cost. Those who merely wish to transcribe credit can do so by taking the CLEP exam.