The CaMLA English Placement Test

The CaMLA English Placement Test (EPT) is designed to quickly and reliably place ESL students into appropriate ability levels. It provides an accurate assessment of a test taker’s general language proficiency by measuring performance in the following key skill areas:

  • Listening comprehension
  • Grammatical knowledge
  • Vocabulary range
  • Reading comprehension

There are 80 questions on all CaMLA EPT forms: 25 listening items, 20 grammar items, 20 vocabulary items, and 15 reading comprehension items. All questions on the EPT are multiple choice, with three options for the listening section and four options for all other sections.

The CaMLA process consists of the following steps:

  1. Determine whether you should take the CaMLA
  2. Take the CaMLA
  3. View and understand your CaMLA results
  4. Explore extra writing support options

Step 1: Determine whether you should take the CaMLA

All international students (F1 or J1 visa holders) who are conditional, probationary, or developmental admits for undergraduate or graduate programs will need to take the CaMLA.

Please note that in addition to the CaMLA, conditionally admitted F1 and J1 students who have not met the English proficiency requirement will need to take two additional assessments—an American Language and Culture Institute (ALCI) writing test as well as an oral interview. These assessments are offered by the ALCI at the beginning of fall, spring, and summer semesters. Your international enrollment counselor will provide further information.

Step 2: Take the CaMLA

The CaMLA EPT will be completed during Global Student Orientation or at the Academic Success Center when you arrive on campus. Talk to your international enrollment counselor if you have further questions.

Step 3: View and understand your CaMLA results

International students whose CaMLA test scores fall below the advanced level range of 69-80 will be required to take TESL 101, TESL 102, or a combination of both courses. Regularly admitted multilingual students whose test scores fall below the cutoff score will be highly encouraged to self-select TESL 101, TESL 102, or a combination of both in their first semester. Once you have completed the CaMLA, your score will be available from International Enrollment Services and the LEC. CaMLA will help you understand whether your foundational English language skills (speaking, listening, reading, writing) are strong enough to launch into your regular program of studies.

Note: CaMLA is a tool used for TESL 101/102 placement purposes; this test cannot be used as a substitute to iBT or IELTS to waive English proficiency requirements. For ALCI test takers, the CaMLA is just one of three exams used for placement in the ALCI program. See your international enrollment counselor for further details.

Step 4: Explore extra writing support options

Students may also visit the Writing Center for free one-on-one appointments. Writing coaches are specifically trained to work with ESL learners. The Writing Center guides APU students to improve their own writing by employing a better writing process. The center can help any APU student, from developmental to advanced, with any kind of writing project at any stage of their writing process.

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