Note: Placement Tests are for your placement in a Chinese language class; Proficiency Tests (scroll down) are for GenEd requirements or LOTE (language other than English) requirements. Please make sure you are reading under the correct section. Individual emails due to your misunderstanding of the tests will NOT be answered. 

Placement Tests

You can register into a Chinese language course if you have completed the previous course in the sequence, or you have taken the Chinese language placement test and got placed into the course.

The goal of a placement test is to evaluate students' language capability for the purpose of placing them into the right level of language classes.  The Chinese language placement test is administered on-line. Since the test is not proctored, the result can not be used to satisfy GenEd requirements or LOTE (language other than English) requirements.  

The Chinese Placement Test for Fall 2024 is now open here

You can finish the test anytime between Monday August 12, 2024 and midnight Friday August 23, 2024. Note that you will only need to take a test if you are new to the Chinese program. If you are a continuing student, you don't need to take the test.

You can register for the test by enrolling yourself in the “course” for the Chinese Placement Test anytime from now on and before the test closes on Friday August 23, 2024.  You can only do the test during the time it is available as indicated above (08/12/2024-08/23/2024). You’ll then need to do a Technology Check to make sure that your computer can capture and transmit your responses.  Budget about 90 minutes to do the test.  Depending on how strong your skills are, you may or may not need that much time.

Please use Chrome or Firefox as a web browser.  We know that Safari and cell phones are not compatible with Moodle, the platform used for the Chinese placement test.

You’ll get your placement recommendation immediately upon completing the test.  Please make sure to follow the instructions in the test to get your placement recommendation. When you go to class, your instructor will let you know whether you should stay with that initial placement (which will be based on your passive skills of Listening Comprehension and Reading Comprehension) or whether you can move up to a higher placement (based on your active skills of Speaking and Writing).



Proficiency Tests

Before registering for the Chinese Proficiency Test, please look for the university's GenEd LOTE (Languages Other Than English) requirement here:

Also, if you complete at least one full academic year in a high school where you studied all of your subjects in a language other than English, you can ask the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to review your high school transcript for Gen Ed LOTE fulfillment. See Option #1 in the Options for Satisfying the General Education Language Requirements document.


The goal of a proficiency test is to evaluate a person's language capability. The test is meant to be general and not tied to specific textbooks. The Department of EALC has developed four Chinese proficiency tests to evaluate one's Chinese capability for GenEd LOTE (Languages Other Than English) requirement, fellowship application and study abroad programs.

The four versions of the Chinese Proficiency Test are: 

  • Test 1 is intended for students who seek to demonstrate third-level language proficiency. It is expected that students either will be native speakers or will have studied Chinese for at least 3 semesters in college or 3 years in high school (5 class hours per week). Passing Test 1 fulfills the third-level language requirement.
  • Test 2 is intended for students who seek to demonstrate fourth-level language proficiency. The Gies College of Business, most programs in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, and some programs in the College of Fine & Applied Arts require fourth-level proficiency. It is expected that students either will be native speakers or will have studied Chinese for at least 4 semesters in college or 4 years in high school (5 class hours per week). Passing Test 2 fulfills the fourth-level language requirement.
  • Test 3 is intended for students who seek to demonstrate sixth-level language proficiency, e.g. for the Global Studies major. It is expected that students either will be native speakers or will have studied Chinese for at least 6 semesters in college (5 class hours per week). Passing Test 3 fulfills the sixth-level language requirement.
  • Test 4 is intended for students who seek to demonstrate eighth-level language proficiency, e.g. for students majoring in East Asian Languages and Cultures. It is expected that students either will be native speakers or will have studied Chinese for at least 8 semesters in college (5 class hours per week). Passing Test 4 fulfills the eighth-level language requirement.

Please reach out to your academic advisor regarding which test you will need to take. The test will be administered and proctored online. You will need access to a computer with camera and a Chinese keyboard already set up; either traditional or simplified Chinese character is fine. You can ask the university IT support for help with that if you do not know how to set up a Chinese keyboard on your computer.

Each version of the test consists of three parts, which will be presented to you in this order: Listening Comprehension, Reading Comprehension, and Writing. There is NOT a Speaking section. For Writing, you'll type your response. You must complete each of the other sections in the order they are presented. The maximum total time for the test is approximately 80 minutes (Listening: 20 minutes; Reading: 30 minutes; Writing: 30 minutes). Depending on your ability level, you might complete the test in less time.


The Fall 2024 Chinese proficiency test will be given on Saturday September 14, 2-4PM.

The test will be given online via Moodle.

[VERY IMPORTANT] Self-registration will be opened on Friday March 1 at 8:00 AM and closed on Friday September 13 at 5:00 PM. Please fill out the registration and enter the correct UID, use the UIUC email address (, and type your name as shown on your student ID. You can NOT access the Moodle-based test with a non-UIUC email address. You will also need to enter your College and Department. Please make sure all the information you enter is correct. Any inaccurate information in registration will prevent your proficiency scores from being reported to your college and department; individual emails due to such reasons will NOT be answered. Please register before the deadline. Registration requests later than the deadline will NOT be accommodated and relevant emails will NOT be answered.

As the test is offered only ONCE each semester, you will have to wait until the following semester to register and take the test. If you are graduating soon, you want to register for the test as early as you can to secure a spot. Also if you are graduating this semester but have not taken the test yet, please also reach out to your academic advisor to figure out a solution. We do not have resources to offer the proficiency test on individual basis if you miss the group test time this semester.

The self-registration Link is:  

Registered students will receive an email by 11PM Friday September 13 about the test with (1) a link to the Chinese Proficiency Test, which will be administered via Moodle and (2) A Zoom link for test proctoring. You will need to show your ID in Zoom in order to proceed to the test.

Please check with your college and department academic advisors for your proficiency test results in a month or so from the date you take the test. We send the score reports to all colleges and departments and do NOT handle individual inquiries about proficiency test results from students.