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Seal of Biliteracy

What is the Seal of Biliteracy?

The Washington State Seal of Biliteracy is established to recognize public high school graduates who have attained an intermediate-mid proficiency in English and one or more world languages in speaking, reading, and writing. This includes American Sign Language and Tribal languages. Students in all Graduation Pathways are eligible to earn the Seal. "Participating school districts with students eligible to receive the Seal, shall place a notation on a student’s high school diploma and high school transcript indicating that the student has earned the seal." (RCW 28A.230.125)

The Seal of Biliteracy can be earned if students complete the following steps:

  • STEP 1: Show proficiency in a language other than English by taking an Approved Proficiency Assessment and earning 4 Competency-based Credits OR earning 4 class-time credits and passing an Approved Proficiency Assessment
  • STEP 2: Show proficiency in English by meeting all Graduation Pathway ELA requirements
  • STEP 3: Graduate

Who is eligible for the Seal?

  • Heritage Speakers who meet the criteria
  • Students who have lived abroad and acquired reading , writing and speaking skills in a language other then English
  • Students who have learned a language in a coursework environment who meet the requirements.

How will these students be recognized?

  • Marked on student’s transcript
  • Seal from the state to go on diploma
  • Medallions to wear at graduation

World Language Competency-Based Testing

General Information

Which language can I test in: Many (not all) languages are available. You will need to know how to speak, listen, read and write in your selected language. Please see your assessment coordinator for the list of available languages.

What can I earn: Up to 4 World Language credits plus eligibility for the Seal of Biliteracy.

What if I already have WL credits from a class: Students who are taking a class can receive additional credits by taking the competency-based test but cannot exceed 4 total credits in the same language.

  • Example #1: You earn 2 credits in high school Spanish. Then you take the STAMP test in Spanish and earn 3 credits, the equivalent to 3 years of seat-time. On your transcript, it will show the additional Spanish credit for a total of 3 credits in Spanish.
  • Example #2: You earn 2 credits in high school Spanish. Then you take the World Language competency test in Korean and you earn 3 credits. Your transcript will show 2 credits in Spanish and 3 credits in Korean.

What other benefits are there: Seniors in the 4th year or beyond in a language may take these tests to show eligibility for the Seal of Biliteracy. 

Is there a cost: These tests are free to Federal Way Students taking the test for the first time. Bring your photo ID.  

How do I begin? Register for the World Language Competency Test at your school!