Michigan Seal of Biliteracy

Attention Seniors who speak another language other than English: The Michigan Department of Education offers you a unique opportunity to earn a seal for your diploma and certificate that verifies that you are bilingual. The award expands your career opportunities and college admissions credentials. This year, the proficiency test to verify that you are at the qualifying level for your other language, (Intermediate High level), will be proctored completely on line. Please register today (and get more information) by scrolling down and filling out the form below. The test will be proctored with an app that you download to verify that you do not open any other tab or program and record you as you take to make it fair for everyone. You will have only one week to finish it, so if you decide to do please follow through by finishing all the required modules within the time provided. The test should take a total of about 2 and 1/2 hours to finish at home. Do not sign up if you do not have the interest to finish it and do well.

What is the Seal of Biliteracy?

(To register for this year's test please go to the form below, BUT please read this page carefully).

The Michigan Seal of Biliteracy has been created to recognize high school graduates who exhibit language proficiency in English and at least one additional world language. The Seal may be awarded to any student receiving a high school diploma, a high school certificate of completion or a high school equivalency certificate AND who has demonstrated Intermediate High proficiency on acceptable world language assessments and met the English Language Arts requirements for graduation.

Why take the test and earn the Seal of Biliteracy?

Michigan's Seal of Biliteracy is a national effort to recognize students like yourself who speak another language. Here at DPSCD we rank in the top schools in Michigan for the numbers of students who earn the seal. Last year students who spoke the following languages were recognized: Spanish, Sylheti, Bangla, Arabic, Russian, among other languages. Here are some testimonials from students throughout the US that talk about why they chose to go after the Seal. (Please note: The Sylheti test is different from the online computer test and may require you to come to school for a verbal interview.

So, what is the test like? How do I get the Seal?

For most languages, you will take an online test at home on your desktop or laptop with a microphone and headphones. You will take a listening and reading section, a conversation section and a written section. In each section you have to show that you are at an Intermediate High level in your language. (For languages without a script like Sylheti, the process will be a bit different and you may need to do it through Teams or at the school.) Don't be intimidated by the fancy term, Intermediate High. This means you can do the following:

For reading and listening, you can fully understand and with ease identify the main ideas and supporting facts in short passages, simple narratives and descriptive passages on familiar topics. In addition, you can understand some more complex passages on less familiar topics. You may need to read/hear complex passages more than once. Your knowledge of the language, your ability to tell the difference between a main idea and a detail, and your ability to use context clues and inferencing may help you understand what you read/hear.

For writing, you can write about yourself and a number of topics beyond yourself. Most of the time you can write well enough to tell stories, describe people, places, and things, and report events. This means that you can use the present, past and future tenses. You write in well-connected sentences (with transition words like however, additionally, in conclusion) and some paragraphs. People who are not used to language learners understand your writing most of the time.

For conversations, you can you keep the conversation going by asking questions, telling stories, describing people, places, and things, and reporting events. You can talk about some topics beyond yourself. You can also resolve a problem that you might encounter in your daily life. You speak in well-connected sentences (with transition words like however, additionally, in conclusion) and some paragraphs. You do all of this in a way that people who speak this language can understand you most of the time even if they are not used to language learners.

You can do this. You have been doing it most of you life!

Here is more info. on how to pass the test, especially for Spanish-speakers.