French & Italian Placement Tests

The Department of French & Italian Studies offers online placement tests for students to place into French and Italian language courses and demonstrate proficiency for UW language requirements. Any undergraduate, graduate or non-degree student can take a placement test throughout the year. To take the placement test, see the information below and follow the link to register and pay for your placement test. If you have questions you may email or before you take the French or Italian placement test.  

Who Should take a Placement Test?

If you have never studied French/Italian before, you do not need to take a placement test. You are eligible to register for FRENCH 101 or ITAL 101.

All students who have previously studied French/Italian but do not have college credit must take the placement test in order to register for a French/Italian language course at the UW. If you took French or Italian in high school you must take a placement test, unless you already have college credit from UW in the High School, an AP language examInternational Baccalaureate language exams, or transfer credit recorded from another institution. Otherwise, the UW registration system will not allow you to register for French/Italian courses.

Students who have taken two or more years of French/Italian in high school will not earn credit if they take FRENCH/ITAL 101 at UW.  This is considered duplication of the student's high school language courses, which were an admission requirement for the UW. If such a student still wants to take FRENCH/ITAL 101 or places into 101 then that student must get departmental permission to take 101 and must understand they will not receive the 5 credits for FRENCH or ITAL 101. Students in this situation can receive credit for completing FRENCH/ITAL 102 and on.

Learn more about foreign Language credit and requirements at the UW.

 French & Italian Placement Test Details

The French & Italian Studies placement tests use the Avant Standards Based Measurement of Proficiency (STAMP) 4S tests provided by the Avant Assessment company.  The Avant STAMP 4S placement test is a remotely proctored, web-based test that assesses French/Italian language proficiency with test questions/prompts that are based on real-world, everyday situations. The test’s four sections are; Reading (30 multiple choice questions), Writing (3 prompts), Listening (30 multiple choice questions), and Speaking (3 prompts). The Avant STAMP 4S placement test places students from elementary to advanced French/Italian language courses.

The Avant STAMP 4S placement test costs $39.90 and is payable online by debit/credit card. On average the test takes around 2 hours and the maximum amount of time allowed is 3 hours (180 minutes). In order to prepare for the test you should carefully review the STAMP 4S Test Taker Guide and the Remote Proctoring Guide to ensure you have the necessary internet connection, operating system, browser, and specific equipment  (PC or Mac computer, smart phone, web camera, mouse, keyboard, and microphone) required to take the test. You can test your computer and equipment with the Avant Technology Check. 

Testing Guides and Resources

Students do not need to study for the placement test but can review materials from previous courses. You may also prepare for the test by consulting the following guides.

Register and Take the Test

Register and pay to schedule the French placement test HERE using your UW email address and student ID number if you have one.

Register and pay to schedule the Italian placement test HERE. Students should note that ITAL 201 in Autumn 2023 is the highest level Italian language course we will offer during the 2023-2024 academic year. We will not offer ITAL 202, 203, or 301 so If you place beyond ITAL 201 there is not an Italian language course available this year.

 If you have any technical issues with registering or taking the test please contact Avant’s Support team at or phone 1-888-713-7887 for assistance. They are open 6:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time Monday – Friday. If you other questions or issues please contact the FIS main office at

Incoming first year students should take the exam as soon as possible during the summer and at least 2 weeks before autumn quarter begins. Current students should at a minimum take the placement test at least 2 weeks before the quarter begins otherwise it may not be possible to take a course that quarter.

Test Results and Course Registration

The FIS Language Program Director evaluates all test results and determines placement. The FIS Main office will send your test scores and placement results within 1-2 weeks after you take the test, you WILL NOT be able to register yourself. We will ask if you want to be registered for the course you have placed into and if a section is available, we will register you. In order to be registered you need to be an eligible degree-seeking student and cannot have another course which conflicts with the class meetings of your French/Italian course or be registered for more than 19 total credits before the quarter begins. Once you are taking a French/Italian language course, you can then register yourself for the next course in the language sequence in registration Period I.

You can wait to take a French or Italian language course, placement test results are accepted for registration one year after the date you took the test, after which they will expire. If you have questions about your test results or registration email with your UW email and student ID number.  For more information see the language placement testing page hosted by the Humanities Academic Services (HAS) Center.

Students who take the placement test cannot register in registration Period I and must wait to be registered until Period II for the upcoming quarter. It is a department policy that only students currently enrolled in language courses can register for courses in registration Period I of the upcoming quarter. Please check the academic calendar for registration Period I & II dates. Students with no French/Italian language experience or courses on their transcripts (high-school level or above) are eligible to register for 101 during Period I. All students must attend the first two days of class in order to maintain registration and those who don't attend can be dropped from the course.

Fulfilling a Foreign Language Requirement

If you are taking the French or Italian placement test to demonstrate proficiency and fulfill your foreign language graduation requirement  or another language requirement you must let the FIS main office ( know when we email you your placement results. If you fulfill the requirement by placing into FRENCH/ITAL 201 or higher, we will then notify the University Registrar so they record it in your academic records.