Biliteracy Testing


Emily Barbire, Editor

This past week, Hawthorne High School gave some students a unique opportunity.

For the first time, the administration required students in Spanish and Italian classes

to take the Biliteracy test. This exam measures your ability to communicate in the language of your desired study. As they put on their headphones, the students locked in on their tests to reach a certain level of proficiency, allowing them to qualify for the seal of biliteracy, an extremely prestigious award. 

The Biliteracy Test was given to students in level 4 or AP Italian and Spanish classes. The exam consists of four parts: reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Each section required you to complete six tasks.

During the reading section, students read passages, one of them tending to be longer and more complex than the others, in their particular language and then answered 2-3 questions about it.

During the writing section, students were given questions to which they were asked to respond in either Spanish or Italian, depending on their testing. While listening, the test played an audio recording in which students were required to try to comprehend and answer multiple-choice questions.

Finally, throughout the speaking portion, a video asks you a question. You are then asked to respond to that question in a certain amount of time. 

The exam was not easy, and all of the students who took part in trying to achieve a seal of biliteracy showed extreme grit throughout the three days it was administered. Those who do land a seal of biliteracy should be honored. This seal is recognized throughout the country. It can help you when you are applying for colleges or jobs in the future. 

The seal of biliteracy can be awarded to the students by the state or the school district. Adding the Biliteracy Test to our curriculum is an excellent step for the HHS Bears. Hard-working students are now able to be rewarded for their effort throughout all of their years of study. It can also be used to inspire students to dive deeper into their language studies to attain this goal.