Chinese Proficiency & Placement

See also general information on Proficiency and Placement Exams. Proficiency Exams measure your ability in a language and are used to satisfy or waive language requirements. Placement Exams and interviews determine which language class is appropriate for your background and ability. The department does not offer either kind of exam to those outside the University.

Please read carefully and thoroughly!

(For more information on Chinese language courses and answers to frequently asked questions, see the Chinese Language Courses page.)


Note! We do not offer the Exam to prospective UW students or non-UW students.

One way to waive the one-year UW foreign language requirement is to pass the Department's Mandarin Proficiency Exam, scheduled quarterly during the regular academic year, except for summer quarter. (For information on proficiency testing in non-Mandarin dialects of Chinese, please contact the Language Learning Center at 543-0536.) A $20 fee is to be paid on the day the Exam is taken. If paying by check, make it out to "Department of Asian Languages and Literature." Please send an email to with your name and e-mail address to sign-up for the Exam.

The next Chinese Proficiency Exam will take on September 26th from 2:30-4:20 in Smith 115.

Second- and third-year proficiency exams are also offered for CISB students and Jackson School students, generally held at the same time as the Mandarin Proficiency Exam described above. For details or to sign up for an exam, send an email to the advisor.

The University of Washington is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education and employment for individuals with disabilities. If you are a student with a documented disability and need to request disability accommodation(s) for your exam, please contact the Disability Services Office at least ten days in advance of your scheduled exam date at: 206.543.6450/V, 206.543.6452/TTY, 206.685.7264 (FAX), or e-mail at


If you would like to take a modern Chinese language course and are not currently enrolled in any UW Chinese language class, you must first complete the online Chinese Language Evaluation Questionnaire.

FOR AUTUMN QUARTER: The Questionnaire is open May 1 through June 5 and will open again from June 23 through September 18. 

Once you have submitted your questionnaire, you will receive email indicating your status and including further directions. Notification is normally within five working days; we appreciate your patience. 

Note that if you find it closed, please check back again later. Or, if you get a "catalyst tools error" message when clicking on the link below, this simply means the questionnaire is currently closed.

Note that if you wish to take Classical Chinese you do not need to fill out the questionnaire.

We regret that non-matriculated students will not be considered for modern Chinese language classes at the first- through third-year level, with the exception of Summer courses.

Chinese Language Evaluation Questionnaire