Bilingual Program Approval Process FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)

Questions Posed by Prospective Bilingual Program Sponsors and Responses from CTC

1.    How do we respond to bilingual standard 1.7? The curriculum is designed around the Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs) for Bilingual Methodology and Culture, the KSA’s encompass the entire set of bilingual standards.  Do we repeat the same response? Do we develop a matrix chart of KSA’s and courses and indicate which course has primary and secondary emphasis in the program?

CTC Response: There is no bilingual standard 1.7.  Some standards do have Program Planning Questions to guide the development of programs. The Program document must address each sentence of the standard; it is not necessary to respond to program planning questions.  It is not necessary to provide the level of detail in response to Program Standard 1 that is provided in response to Program Standard 6.

A matrix is included in Appendix F of the handbook (pgs. 46-47).  A completed matrix identifies the courses where the KSAs are covered and is a nice organizational tool for both programs and readers, but it is not required for all programs.  However, if you will be using a combination of CSET: LOTE examination and program coursework the KSA/course matrix is required.

2.    Could we develop some sort of a CSU system-wide BCLAD program to assist those CSU campuses that don’t have sufficient students to run their own programs?

CTC Response:  Yes.  It will be important to identify the institution that is the sponsor of the program, is responsible for the program and that will be completing the required accreditation activities for the program.

3.    How do we apply the unit cap under the new bilingual standards?

CTC Response:  Coursework offered in addition to the requirements of the 2042 preliminary program and used toward bilingual authorization is NOT a part of the one year program limitation.  Coursework used toward a 2042 preliminary credential is part of the unit cap and must not exceed the equivalent of one year in length.

4.    Does it make a difference in the unit cap if we define our programs as concurrent or sequential?

CTC Response:  It does not. If the course is part of the 2042 preliminary preparation program, it is part of the one year program limitation (unit cap).  If the course is part of the bilingual authorization program, it is not subject to the unit cap.

5.    AB 1871 (Coto) provides options for candidates to combine program completion with passage of one or two of the three subtests of the CSET:LOTE examination to qualify for the bilingual authorization. What does an institution need to do if it plans to recommend candidates based on a combination of coursework and Commission-approved CSET: LOTE examinations?

Education Code Section 44253.7 (b) clarifies the option to allow candidates to complete the requirements for the bilingual authorization by one of three routes; passage of the CSET:LOTE–an oral and written–examination, by completing an approved program that consists of coursework, or a combination of coursework and passage of one or two subtests of the CSET:LOTE examination. Program sponsors should clearly indicate (Appendix F of the handbook provides a matrix) which course(s) will be waived if an individual has passed one or two subtests of the CSET: LOTE examination.

6.    What is the approval process for an institution interested in creating its own bilingual language competency exam separate from CSET LOTE?

CTC Response:  Education Code Section 44253.5 (a) charges the Commission with responsibility for the development and administration of examinations. The Commission has fulfilled this responsibility with the CSET: LOTE examination series.  At this time, there is no option for alternative assessments of languages for which the Commission has developed an examination.  The Commission has language competency examinations for American Sign Language, Arabic, Armenian, Cantonese, Farsi, Filipino, French, German, Hebrew, Hmong, Japanese, Khmer, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

EC 44253.5(c) allows the commission to establish guidelines for approving assessments of languages for which the Commission has not developed an examination and are performed by organizations that are experts in the language and culture assessed.  Institutions interested in developing a local language skills assessment for which there is no CSET: LOTE examination should contact Phyllis Jacobson, administrator of the Examinations Unit of the Commission.

7.     Could CSU establish a system-wide bilingual language assessment exam that could be used by all CSU’s?

CTC Response:  Since the Commission has adopted a bilingual language assessment there is no option for alternative assessments of language.

8.     Is it possible to offer an online bilingual language assessment that would be used commonly across programs?

CTC Response:  Not as an alternative to the CSET: LOTE. But if the bilingual language assessment is a component of an approved program (See response 9b or 9c) then it is possible.

9.    How might a program meet Bilingual Program Standard 6?

CTC Response:  There are several ways to meet Program Standard 6 (listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in the target language).  The program must provide information in its response to this standard to clarify how it is determined that language skills are equivalent to the CSET: LOTE content specifications or how it is determined that the minimum performance standard in terms of ACTFL are met, as well as, the qualifications of those individuals making the determination.  The following are some possibilities but additional options could be suggested by program sponsors;

a)    Candidates pass the CSET: LOTE examination in the target language as the sole means of meeting Program Standard 6.
b)    The program prepares candidates and provides multiple opportunities for them to demonstrate their competence in reading, writing, speaking and listening in the target language which may include university coursework that employs the target language as the language of instruction, assignments, and locally-developed language assessment instruments as part of the approved Bilingual program to verify candidates’ level of use of the target language.
c)    The program determines equivalence to upper division and/or graduate-level foreign language course units that directly address candidate competencies in listening, speaking, reading, and writing the target language.
d)    The program grants equivalence to candidates who have completed a Commission-approved subject matter program in the target language.


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