The Stanford Language Center has been offering the highest quality language instruction and assessment since its establishment in 1995. With course offerings in more than forty languages, SLC programs are proficiency-oriented and standards-based. Our language programs emphasize doing rather than knowing, so that students learn to speak, listen, read, and write in ways that are immediately useful in a real world setting.
At the Language Center, we prepare all Stanford students to have a foreign language capability that enhances their academic program and enables them to live, work, study, and research in a different country. Stanford students need to be able to initiate interactions with persons from other cultures but also to engage with them on issues of mutual concern.
Accurate initial placement is a key factor in successfully learning a foreign language. The Language Center administers placement tests to all students who intend to continue studying a foreign language at Stanford. The purpose of testing is diagnostic: it assesses students' current language abilities in order to match them to the course most suitable for that level. Accurate initial placement is a key factor in successfully learning a foreign language. Placement exams in each language consist of both text and oral components. Proficiency testing measures what students are able to do with the language.