Placement & Proficiency Exams

Language Proficiency

We offer non-credit proficiency examinations in Modern Standard Arabic, Persian, and Turkish at the two- and four-semester level to satisfy the second language proficiency requirement in your home department. Passing a course for which the required level is a prerequisite also establishes proficiency in the language. Students wishing to test in Hebrew should contact the Arizona Center for Judaic Studies.

University of Arizona Policy provides for proficiency examination availability to University degree-seeking students. The results of proficiency examinations, if successful, are reported in writing directly to the Office of the Registrar, with a copy to the student. For more information on fulfilling the second language proficiency requirement in MENAS languages, contact MENAS undergraduate advising, or the graduate coordinator.

Credit by Examination

Under certain limited circumstances, students enrolled at the University of Arizona may earn non-graded credit for undergraduate MENAS language courses (maximum of 10 credits) by taking a special examination. You may not earn credit for language proficiency gained in secondary school, before entering university. The language proficiency should have been gained through post-secondary self study, summer study, or study abroad.  The responsibility for preparatory study for these examinations rests entirely with the student; faculty members are under no obligation to assist with such preparation. A passing grade will be recorded as credit “CR” and will become a permanent part of the student’s record, but will not be used in computing the student’s cumulative grade-point-average (GPA).

Credit by exam examinations are constructed and administered by the School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies. The examinations for MENAS languages include both a written and an oral component.


  • Credit by exam is not available for Persian.
  • International students are considered native speakers of the official language of their country of citizenship, and as such may not test out of and receive credit for courses in that language.
  • The credit earned through credit by exam may not duplicate units already presented for admission to the University.
  • Credit earned through credit by exam may not be in a course which is equivalent to, or more elementary than, another course in which the student is enrolled or for which the student has already received credit.


Students wishing to earn credit by exam in a language course must establish the following:  

  1. Active enrollment at the University of Arizona – Students not currently enrolled may not receive course credit by taking an examination.
  2. Preparation for the exam – The credit-by-examination option subsumes preparatory effort; students must demonstrate, through self-study or study abroad program that they have prepared for the exam.

Examination Process

The examining instructor will give you your exam on the scheduled date.

It should take about two weeks for the credit to appear on your record. If not, contact the Middle Eastern North African Studies main office at 520-621-8013. The grade "CR" will be reported to the Office of the Registrar. The student's graded examination paper and any evaluations of oral performance or projects will remain on file with the department for at least one year.

  1. Schedule the Exam
    Contact the MENAS Language Coordinator in order to schedule a proficiency examination.
  2. Take the Exam
  3. Receiving Credit

Please contact the department for further information about the credit by exam policy or to schedule an exam.