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State Certification and Proficiency Tests: The Experience in Pennsylvania


  • Jean A. Perkins

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      Jean A. Perkins (Ph.D., Columbia University) is Associate Professor of French at Swarthmore College. She has published articles in Studies on Voltaire, has served on the Board of Directors of the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, and was the Conference's Chairman in 1966. She has conducted research in France under grants from Swarthmore College and the Old Dominion Fund. She is a member of MLA, ACTFL, and AATF.


ABSTRACT: This paper is based on a report delivered to the Massachusetts Foreign Language Association at its fall meeting, 4 November 1967. It tells what has happened in Pennsylvania since the adoption in February 1965 of the requirement that all candidates for certification in a foreign language pass the MLA Foreign Language Proficiency Tests. The consensus of opinion among foreign language department heads at both the school and college level is strongly in favor of this means of assuring fluency in all four language skills. However, certain problems have arisen, and these are outlined along with suggestions for solving them.