On This Page

Placement Exams

You are here

Foreign Languages

These examinations are for students who wish to continue a language studied in high school. You must take this placement examination if you have more than one year of study in the language and do not have an SAT II or AP score in that language. For specific information on individual language exams (basic placement exams, advanced standing or CASE exams, schedules, locations, and makeup exams), please consult the websites listed below.

African Languages (Swahili and Yoruba): Any student wishing to sign up for an African language placement test should contact the Africana Studies and Research Center at 607.255.4625, email africana@cornell.edu, or visit africana.cornell.edu.

Arabic: Any student wishing to sign up for the Arabic placement exam should contact Munther Younes, director of the Arabic language program, by calling 607.255.6275 or by email at may2@cornell.edu.

Asian Languages (Bengali, Burmese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Khmer, Korean, Mandarin, Nepali, Sanskrit, Sinhala, Tagalog, Thai, Urdu, and Vietnamese): Any student wishing to take an Asian language placement exam should visit the Asian studies department website

German: Visit the German Studies website for more information. Please contact Gunhild Lischke at gl15@cornell.edu or 607.255.0725 if you have questions.

Greek, Ancient: To arrange a placement test in ancient Greek, please call Linda Brown at 607.255.3354 or email her at lmb296@cornell.edu.

Hebrew: For the Hebrew placement exam, you may sign up at 409 White Hall, by calling 607.255.6275, or by sending an email to Nava Scharf, Hebrew language coordinator, at ns21@cornell.edu.

Latin: To arrange a placement test in Latin, please call Linda Brown at 607.255.3354 or email her at lmb296@cornell.edu.

Persian: Any student wishing to sign up for a Persian language placement exam should contact Iago Gocheleishvili, Persian language coordinator, by calling 607.255.6467 or emailing ig44@cornell.edu.

Romance Languages (French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish):
Visit our website for more information.

Russian: The Russian placement exam (also called Russian CASE) is given in the fall and spring semesters, usually two or three days before the first day of classes. Details will be posted in advance under Current Announcements at our website.

Scandinavian Languages (Norwegian and Swedish): Please contact K.E. von Wittelsbach at wittelsbach@cornell.edu

Slavic and Ugro-Finnic Languages (Bosnian, Croatian, Czech, Hungarian, Macedonian, Polish, Slovenian, Serbian, and Ukrainian): If you have questions about placement in any of these languages, please contact Callean Hile at 607.255.8222 or by email at clh2@cornell.edu.


Why placement examinations?

Placement examinations are administered to determine a new student’s appropriate level of study within a discipline. On the basis of your performance on an examination, you may be placed in the subject’s introductory course; be exempted from the introductory course and be allowed to take a more advanced course; or be exempted from the introductory course, receive credit for that course, and be allowed to take a more advanced course. Grades on advanced standing examinations do not become part of your university record.

Do I have to take an exam?

Some of the examinations may be required by your college. Check the materials sent to you by your college and the college orientation section of this booklet for more details. Consult Courses of Study (courses.cornell.edu) and information from your college regarding credits awarded on the basis of your exam scores and descriptions of the courses you may be exempted from and placed into.

What about students with disabilities?

Students who wish to receive testing accommodation for placement exams due to a disability must contact Student Disability Services (SDS) prior to taking a placement exam. Disability documentation is required to receive academic accommodation. Contact SDS by calling 607.254.4545, emailing sds_cu@cornell.edu, or visiting the office on Level 5 of Cornell Health located on Ho Plaza.

What about ESL (English as a Second Language) students?

Contact the Writing Workshop at 607.255.6349 if you are an ESL student who needs help with your writing.

Next: Pre-Health Recommendations