Introduction: The National Spanish Exam (NSE) is an online, standardized assessment competition for Grades 6 -12, given voluntarily by about 4,000 middle and high school teachers throughout the United States, to measure performance (interpretive communication) and achievement of students who are studying Spanish as a second language.
Exam format: The NSE is divided into five levels, based on the student’s level of proficiency in Spanish: Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Superior, and Distinguished. Each exam level consists of a multiple-choice section and a free-response section, which may include translation, interpretation, and composition tasks.
The format and length of the National Spanish Exam for all levels (01-6) is as follows:
- Achievement exam (vocabulary and grammar) is 40 minutes.
- Proficiency exam (reading and listening) is 40 minutes.
The NSE is typically administered in a classroom setting, with students being given a set amount of time to complete each section. The exact format and length of the exam may vary yearly. Students who score well on the NSE may be recognized as National Spanish Exam Scholars, and may be eligible for awards and other recognition from the AATSP.
- Premio de Oro: scores at or above the 95th percentile
- Premio de Plata: scores at or above the 8th through 94th percentiles
- Premio de Bronce: scores at or above the 75th through 84th percentiles
- Mención Honorífica: scores at or above the 50th through 74th percentiles
- Perfect scores: scores every answer correctly