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Tester & Rater Certifications

ACTFL offers a variety of training and certification programs designed to meet the needs of world language educators, researchers, and administrators. All ACTFL Certified Testers and Raters are specialized language professionals who have completed rigorous certification processes and have met all ACTFL-determined criteria. ACTFL Certified Testers and Raters represent a critical resource to their academic institutions and to the world language profession. ACTFL Tester and Rater Certifications are highly-valued professional credentials that are recognized internationally.

Certification Types

ACTFL offers tester and rater certifications in four assessments:

  1. Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) Tester Certification
    • Full OPI Certification (through the Superior proficiency range)
    • Limited OPI Certification (up to the Intermediate High proficiency range)
  2. Oral Proficiency Interview – Computer (OPIc) Rater Certification (by invitation)
  3. Writing Proficiency Test (WPT) Rater Certification
  4. ACTFL Assessment of Performance toward Proficiency (AAPPL) Rater Certification

The awarding of an ACTFL certification a is validation of one’s understanding of the principles and concepts of proficiency-based language assessment and of one’s ability to apply theory to practice in language teaching and learning settings.

Certification Prerequisites

To apply to become a certified tester or rater, candidates must meet the following general prerequisites:

  • Affiliation with an accredited academic institution as defined by ACTFL*
  • Possession of an undergraduate degree in a related field
  • Minimal proficiency level of Advanced-Mid for Limited Certification and a Superior for Full Certification in the language of training.

*An academic institution is an accredited school, college, or university where foreign languages are taught. The term affiliation with an academic institution is defined as a current faculty and/or staff member who is involved in the instruction or evaluation of language students. Private language companies that offer translation services or language testing do not qualify under ACTFL’s definition of an academic institution. Private for-profit companies also do not qualify. 

Want to learn more?

  • Frequently Asked Questions:
    Visit the Frequently Asked Questions page. It is updated regularly.
  • Weekly Online Office Hours:  Have your certification questions answered by joining one of our virtual office hours, which are hosted by the Certifications and Quality Assurance team.

    Mondays from 4:00 to 5:00 pm EST. Register to attend this session here.

    Wednesdays from 12:00 to 1:00 pm EST. Register to attend this session here.

  • Email the ACTFL Certification Specialists at opicert@actfl.org. (Please note that this program receives a high volume of emails. It may take up to 48 hours for a response.)
  • OPI Certification Webinars: (for enrolled OPI Certification Candidates)

ACTFL hosts a 6pm EST webinar once a month for enrolled OPI Certification Candidates.  Each webinar is conducted by ACTFL’s Certification Specialist and is co-hosted by an OPI Master Tester along with a newly certified OPI Tester.  OPI certification candidates can find webinar dates and registration information on Path, ACTFL’s Certification Learning Portal.

Certification Appeals Process

ACTFL is committed to a transparent certification process.  While not all individuals who apply for certification achieve it, ACTFL convenes an Appeals Committee on a quarterly basis to reconsider certification decisions.  Candidates for an appeal must meet the following criteria:

  • Certification materials were evaluated inaccurately

    and/or

  • There were extenuating circumstances that did not allow for a fair assessment of a candidate’s testing/rating performance

For detailed information on the certification appeals process, visit here.