Spanish is the language of more than 410 million people in the world and is the second most spoken language in the world.

The Spanish Language CLEP exam will measure the student’s proficiency in Spanish reading and listening comprehension as would be expected after two to four semesters in college study. The exam will test knowledge gained from the end of the first year of study to the end of the second; therefore, both year 1 and year 2 are combined into the one exam.

The exam contains approximately 120 questions to be answered in approximately 90 minutes. Some of these are pretest questions that will not be scored. There are three separately timed sections. The three sections are weighted so that each question contributes equally to the total score. The College Board provides the parameters for the exam which we have listed below.

The exam has two Listening sections and one Reading section. All sections are timed.

  • The two Listening sections together are approximately 30 minutes in length. The amount of time students have to answer a question varies according to the section and does not include the time they spend listening to the test material.
  • The Reading section is 60 minutes in length.


  • Questions on the Spanish Language exam require students to comprehend written and spoken Spanish. The subject matter is drawn from the following skills.

SECTION I–LISTENING: 15% of the exam

  • Listening: Rejoinders
  • Listening comprehension through short oral exchanges

SECTION II–LISTENING: 25% of the exam

  • Listening: Dialogues and Narratives
  • Listening comprehension through longer spoken selections

SECTION III–READING: 60% of the exam

  • Part A: Discrete sentences (vocabulary and structure) 16%
  • Part B: Short cloze* passages (vocabulary and structure) 20%
  • Part C: Reading passages and authentic stimulus materials (reading comprehension) 24%

*Cloze refers to a test of reading comprehension that involves the test taker supplying words which have been purposefully deleted from the written passage.

Each college sets their own credit-granting policies for the exam, so check with your college admissions office, test center, or academic adviser before taking the test.


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