You don’t have to stress out about tests anymore!
In fact, tests are going to be your new friends! When you’re learning a language, language proficiency tests may become your unexpected (but much beloved) sidekick in your language learning saga.
So check out these six challenging websites to test your language skills!
- 1. Transparent Language
- 2. Cactus Language
- 3. Language Trainers
- 4. Sprachcaffe
- 5. Berlitz
- 6. Language Testing International
- Why Test Your Language Skills?
1. Transparent Language
If you’re looking for a proficiency test that’s thorough, challenging and free, look no further than Transparent Language!
Transparent Language is mostly known for its language learning programs. However, it also offers a number of free resources for learners. One of Transparent Language’s free resources is its proficiency tests. These tests are offered for a total of 14 languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Latin, Irish, Dutch, Swedish, Polish, Russian, Chinese, Japanese and Brazilian Portuguese.
Each proficiency test has two sections on grammar, a section on vocabulary and a section on reading comprehension. The test will automatically give you your overall percentage of correct answers. However, if you sign up for the site, you can also see a detailed breakdown of how you did in each section along with which answers were correct.
2. Cactus Language
It may sound prickly, but Cactus Language’s language level tests are not at all painful.
Cactus Language is a company that offers language courses all over the world, but these free online language level tests are something that any learner can benefit from. Each test contains 40 questions, and you should be able to complete the whole test in about 10 minutes.
If you don’t know an answer, you don’t even have to guess. Since the test is meant to reflect your skill level, it’s fine to just answer that you don’t know. And, at the very least, by the end of the test you’ll be well versed in your target language’s phrase for “I don’t know.”
Once the test is complete, you’ll have your results. Rankings include beginner, elementary, intermediate, upper intermediate, advanced and proficient. There is a also a detailed breakdown of the skills you’re likely to possess at your level.
Cactus offers tests for 22 languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Danish, Swedish, Dutch, Czech, Polish, Russian, Croatian, Greek, Turkish, Arabic, Hebrew, Hindi, Thai, Cantonese, Mandarin and Japanese.
3. Language Trainers
Want to make sure your language skills will be taken seriously anywhere in the world?
While Language Trainers usually focuses on providing language courses, it also offers free testing to assess your skill level.
Testing from Language Trainers corresponds to internationally recognized standards so that your skills will be clear wherever you may go.
Language Trainers asks that you only answer when you’re sure it’s correct since guessing could lead to inaccurate scores. Beyond that, the tests are fairly flexible. To get results, you need to go through at least 10 questions, but you can take up to 70. To receive your results, however, you must provide your email address.
Language Trainers offers tests for 18 languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Dutch, Russian, Greek, Turkish, Arabic, Hebrew, Mandarin Chinese, Korean and Japanese.
The name might not roll off your tongue, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it to improve your skills!
Sprachcaffe, known for its international network of language schools, offers quick, free online proficiency tests. To take the tests, you must complete a brief signup for the site, but then you’re immediately free to take the tests.
Each test contains about 70 questions. Once you’ve completed the test, you’ll receive your approximate level. You’ll also be able to look over the correct answers to the test to see what you got right and what you got wrong, which will provide you with some additional insight into your skills.
Sprachcaffe offers tests for seven languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Arabic and Chinese.
Written tests are great, but sometimes you really need to test your listening ability, too. Berlitz is the solution!
Berlitz, a language education company, offers free online aptitude tests to assess your language knowledge. All you have to do is register and get to work!
Each test contains nearly 70 questions and should take about 30 minutes. Some questions are written, while others contain audio examples to give you a nice balance between testing reading and listening skills.
Berlitz offers tests for English, Spanish, French, German and Italian.
6. Language Testing International
Want to include your impressive language skills on your résumé? Language Testing International can certainly help add weight to the skills you list.
Language Testing International focuses on certifying language skills through testing. International companies like Coca-Cola, Samsung, Verizon and many more use Language Testing International themselves.
Taking a test through Language Testing International can provide you with language certification from the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), which will certainly be a bright spot on any résumé. Plus, language certification can make your résumé stand apart from other candidates who may also speak the same language.
While this is a more formal test than others, you do still take the test online and are allowed to take it whenever and wherever you want. No need to go to a stuffy testing center!
Once you’ve selected the language you want to be certified in, you’ll have several options. You might choose a speaking test, writing test, listening test or reading test. Each test takes between 30 and 80 minutes and costs between $50 and $159.
Language Testing International offers certifications in over 100 languages, including popular languages like Spanish, French, German, Chinese and Japanese, along with less common languages like Kazakh, Lao, Somali and countless others.
Why Test Your Language Skills?
One popular reason to test your language skills is to see how much you’ve already learned. Seeing how far you’ve come can be very motivating. Who knows what the results might be? You may even know more than you think, which is super exciting.
Additionally, you might also want to test your language skills in order to see what you still need to work on. Many language tests are broken down into specific skills, like reading and writing. Seeing how you’re doing in these skills can help pinpoint your weakest area, allowing you to bring it up to the level of the rest of your skills.
Using a spaced repetition system (SRS) when learning can help tremendously, as it focuses your learning experience on the areas you most need to review. Several resources utilize SRS algorithms in this way.
FluentU, for example, is a language learning program that uses SRS to reinforce vocabulary learned from authentic web videos. The program includes customizable flashcard decks and quizzes that use spaced repetition to create a more personalized learning experience.
Finally, testing yourself is a valuable way to get a realistic estimate of your skills. Knowing your skill level will be useful if you ever want to select the right textbook, choose a language immersion software, find the best language learning app or include your language skills on a résumé. Since a lot of cool jobs require you to know an additional language, it’s important to be able to clarify your skill level.
Don’t let the bad reputation of tests scare you off. They may just become the best thing you never asked for!