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Languages and Cultures

Graduate

Contact Languages and Cultures  

Languages and Cultures

Address:
224 Mitchell Hall
West Chester, PA 19383


Phone: 610-436-2700
Fax: 610-436-3048


Dr. Cristóbal Cardemil-Krause
Acting Chair July 2018-June 2019

K-12 Graduate Certification in French, German. and Spanish*

*This site is currently being updated; some information may not be current. Once the update is completed, this announcement shall be removed.

Should I enroll at the graduate or undergraduate level for post-bacc certification?

Either one is acceptable by the State of Pennsylvania. Graduate certification courses cost more but they may be counted toward a master’s degree and they will give you a higher salary on the job.

Do I have to take the undergraduate two math, two English courses required for undergrads?

No, those undergraduate course requirements have been dropped. You just need a major in the language.

When should I take the Praxis II exam? Where do I register and pay?

Pre-Professional Skills Tests (PPST) are required for ALL subject areas unless currently holding PA Certification. Candidates should contact their major department for preferred date and sequence of their required Praxis tests.

Important Information: These tests must be taken seriously. The Teacher Certification Office administers the Praxis I and II paper-delivered tests; 4 times a year for Praxis I. Because test requirements and passing scores frequently change and vary for the different certification areas, students are encouraged to contact Mrs. Gail Habbersett 302 Recitation Hall (Phone: 610-436-2426) on a regular basis throughout the completion of their degree program.

View College of Education - Praxis for upcoming test dates.

Paper-Based or Computer-Based Tests (CBT)
Test Sessions Paper-based Code/CBT Code Option 1 Score Meet or exceed each minimum test score Option 2 Score Composite score = 521 All areas must meet the minimum (see below), and the sum of the three scores must meet or exceed 521.
PPST Reading 1 710/5710 172 Minimum 169
PPST Writing 2 720/5720 173 Minimum 170
PPST Math 1 730/5730 173 Minimum 170

Option 1 Score Meet or exceed each minimum test score

Option 2 Score Composite score = 521 All areas must meet the minimum (see below), and the sum of the three scores must meet or exceed 521.

Students must take the Praxis II exams before their student teaching. For specific information, please visit the College of Education website.

When should I take the ACTFL Exams: Oral (OPI) and Written (WPT)? Where do I register and pay?

Before enrolling in EDS 411/412, certification candidates work with designated faculty members to request and take second language proficiency tests offered through ACTFL/LTI. The OPI is administered by a certified rater via telephone; the WPT is administered online and/or as a paper exam. For students who are new admits to the program in Spring 2013 and after, a rating of Advanced Low on both the OPI and WPT is required in order to enroll in EDS 411/412, and to be recommended for certification to the PDE. World languages majors who fail to meet the Advanced Low criterion will not student teach or be recommended for certification, but will be permitted to complete the BA without certification in their language of specialization; this requires completion of 202 or its equivalent in a second language. Achievement of advanced proficiency requires a significant immersion experience prior to student teaching. The immersion experience can include, but is not limited to study abroad, internship, and intensive summer language programs at a domestic institution. For this reason, immersion opportunities to increase proficiency should be discussed with an advisor as early as possible in the program, and well before FATE.

Why do I need to take both the ACTFL and both Praxis II exams?

You must take both Praxis II tests and the ACTFL OPI and WPT tests: the Praxis before student teaching and the ACTFL during that semester. The Praxis II is required as part of your language program assessment. The ACTFL exams are required because they determine functional language ability as described in the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines.

Do I need both to graduate with K-12 certification?

Yes, currently you must take both the Praxis II and the ACTFL exams.

Under what circumstances can I take one of the two exams and still be certified?

For K-12 certification in French, German, Russian and Spanish, the Pennsylvania Dept. of Education (PDE) accepts either Praxis II or ACTFL OPI/WPT scores. Students must report their passing ACTFL exam scores to the Certification Office, care of Gail Habbersett.

Certification Areas and Requirements

French
  • Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge (#0511) REQUIRED SCORE: 150
  • World Languages: French (#5174) REQUIRED SCORE: 162 (computerized test, no paper tests available)
  • TEST: ACTFL (OPI + WPT)*** REQUIRED SCORE: 120
  • PRAXIS II required by department
  • Must TAKE any required Praxis II tests prior to student teaching.

All PRAXIS II exams are required for Pennsylvania certification but NOT to graduate from West Chester University.

German
  • Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge (#0511) REQUIRED SCORE: 150
  • World Languages: German (#5183) REQUIRED SCORE: 163 (computerized test, no paper tests available)
  • ACTFL (OPI + WPT)*** REQUIRED SCORE: 120
  • PRAXIS II required by department.
  • Must TAKE any required Praxis II tests prior to student teaching.

All PRAXIS II exams are required for Pennsylvania certification but NOT to graduate from West Chester University.

Latin
  • Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge(#0511) REQUIRED SCORE: 150
  • Latin (#0600) - REQUIRED SCORE: 610
  • Must TAKE any required Praxis II tests prior to student teaching.

All PRAXIS II exams are required for Pennsylvania certification but NOT to graduate from West Chester University.

Spanish
  • Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge (#0511) REQUIRED SCORE: 150
  • World Languages: Spanish (#5195) REQUIRED SCORE: 168 (computerized test, no paper tests available)
  • ACTFL (OPI + WPT)*** REQUIRED SCORE: 120
  • PRAXIS II required by department
  • Must TAKE any required Praxis II tests prior to student teaching.

All PRAXIS II exams are required for Pennsylvania certification but NOT to graduate from West Chester University.

If I fail the Praxis II, how often can I retake it to achieve a passing score?

Praxis II tests for foreign languages may be taken each time they are offered since the minimum lapse time required between CBT tests is 30 days. Most of the world languages tests are administered at least two months apart.

If I fail one or both ACTFL exams, can I retake one or both to achieve a passing score?

Yes, you can retake the ACTFL exams. Please consult both the ACTFL website and Dr. Maria Cabrera to retake ACTFL exams.

If I do not pass the Praxis II and/or the ACTFL exams, can I still graduate as a language major? What options do I have?

You can graduate with the B.A. degree in your language area, provided that you have met all the requirements (for instance, the second language requirement needed in the B.A.). Always consult your advisor, language coordinator or department chair when you switch from Elective Certification to the B.A. without elective certification.

How long are the Praxis I scores valid from the last test date?

Praxis I test scores are good indefinitely.

I took and passed the Praxis II many years ago. For how many years are my scores valid from the last test date?

Praxis II scores are valid for 10 years.

Are there practice sessions for Praxis II and ACTFL exams?

While your course work prepares you to take both exams, the department has review books and study guides available for the Praxis II.

Can I get certified outside of West Chester University?

Yes, you may be certified directly by a school district or by the PDE in Harrisburg.

What is Formal Admission to Teacher Education?

Formal Admission to Teacher Education is required for enrollment in the final three courses for certification. You must have passed the Praxis I exams first.

What are the conditions for a waiver for Formal Admission to Teacher Education?

The waiver is for one missing course. It cannot be used for an inadequate GPA.

What do I do if I need an education course for certification and there are no more seats, or the course is not offered that semester/session?

You can take the course at a different school or at a different level at WCU.

If I wish to obtain certification in a second foreign language, what do I do?

You must pass the Praxis II exam in the second language.

I want to enroll in EDS 505 (Field Experience), but there are no more seats available. What do I do?

You should contact Deborah Kaba in the College of Education.

Can I take both EDS 505 and LAN 503 in the same semester? Also, what passing grade do I need in LAN 401?

EDS 505 must be taken before you are eligible to enroll in LAN 503. The minimum passing grade that you must achieve in LAN 503 is a B.

If I fail either EDS 411 or 412, can I repeat one or the other?

No, a grade of F results in dismissal from the graduate program. You must withdraw to avoid this.

I have transfer credits for professional education courses from another school. Who evaluates them?

That contact is Dr. Matthew Kruger-Ross (MKRUGER-ROSS@WCUPA.EDU; 610-436-2106)

Can I combine undergraduate and graduate level credits for certification?

Yes, they both count equally for state certification. But only graduate credits count toward a master’s degree, of course, and all grades are counted under the graduate standards, and all tuition is at the graduate level.

Why do I need two advisors: one in the Dept. of Languages and Cultures and one in the College of Education?

You are assigned an academic advisor in the Department of Languages and Cultures, and a professional advisor in the College of Education’s Department of Professional and Secondary Education, in order to provide you quality advising and guidance.

My advising sheet lists the professional education courses I must take prior to FATE. Do those courses have to be taken in the order listed?

You must take all the required courses, but not necessarily in the order listed. For the requirements for FATE, see your advising sheet and the COE website: There are some courses that are prerequisites for others, though.

Are my undergraduate courses counted in my graduate GPA?

Yes, you have one GPA which must conform to the graduate program standards.

Do I have to pay graduate tuition for all my courses?

Yes, but keep in mind that you will earn a higher salary for any graduate credits achieved.

If I am certified to teach K-12 in PA, am I qualified / eligible to teach in Maryland, New Jersey or Delaware? Does my license follow me from state to state?

Each state has its own requirements for certification. Please contact the Department of Education for the appropriate state to learn about their own requirements.