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Can-Do Statements for Review

Thank you for your willingness to provide feedback on this draft version of revisions to the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements document. The Can-Do Writing Team has been working since September 2016 on revisions to the original document, with the goal of providing a framework to more clearly identify the broad differences across the major ranges of Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Superior, and Distinguished, as well as from sub-level to sub-level (Low – Mid – High).


NOTE: this is NOT the full final draft
You are asked to provide feedback on this SAMPLE document.

  •  Read the SAMPLE drafts and look for clarity, consistency, and usefulness.

There are three different presentations of the Benchmarks, Indicators, and Sample Tasks:

A: Grid of Benchmarks and Indicators (PDF)

Compare these two samples of ways to present Benchmarks, Indicators, and Sample Tasks

B: Each Range (Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Superior, Distinguished) with One Indicator shown across Three Sub-Levels (PDF)

C: Each Sub-Level (Novice Low-Mid-High; Intermediate Low-Mid-High; etc.) with all Three Indicators shown (PDF)


Please provide your feedback no later than Tuesday, May 30.

Your online survey responses will be automatically collected (when you click “Done” at the end of the feedback survey questions)

CAUTION:  Do not duplicate nor forward the document.  It is a draft version – for feedback only.

The Can-Do document is arranged as follows:

Benchmarks: Identify the overarching features of language performance, i.e., context, text type, accuracy and function, in each of the three modes of communication to describe learner’s progress along the ACTFL Proficiency continuum. Benchmarks are used for learners to set long-term goals and to inform program and course outcomes.  

Indicators:  Deconstruct the Benchmark by focusing on certain aspects of language performance, i.e., context, text type, accuracy and function. Indicators describe the steps toward reaching the overarching Benchmark goal. Indicators are used to help learners chart progress toward meeting language learning goals and to inform unit design.

Sample Learning Tasks: Provide examples of the performance indicators in a variety of learning contexts (e.g., social, academic across PK-20, immersion, adult). Learners provide multiple forms of evidence of consistent language performance over time.  Learning tasks are used to inform instruction at the lesson or learning activity level.

For successful implementation of the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements, it is important for learners and educators to understand what this tool is and what this tool is not.

What this tool IS

What this tool is NOT

Performance indicators for learners to demonstrate consistently over time
Learners need to demonstrate their evidence of what they “can do” in each mode at each sub-level,  with increasing consistency in numerous situations throughout the learning process.
Not a checklist of tasks to be demonstrated once and checked off
It is not sufficient for the learner to show evidence of the indicator in just one specific situation; the sample tasks provide examples of how the learner might demonstrate each mode of communication  through a wide variety of evidence of each indicator at each sub-level.
A set of sample learning tasks that can be adapted to school, district, or postsecondary curriculum as well as independent learning goals
The Can-Do Statements are meant to be adapted to individual learning contexts. They include open-ended “I can...” statements for learners and teachers to customize in order to fit the content and context of the learning and the targeted proficiency level.
Not a prescribed curriculum
The Can-Do Statements are designed to offer samples for modification or elaboration of language syllabi and curricula; they are not intended to provide ready-made lessons. The statements provided do not claim to be exhaustive or specific to a level of schooling.
A starting point for self-assessment, goal-setting, and the creation of rubrics for performance-based grading
Educators and learners use the statements for self-evaluation to become more aware of what they know and can do in the target language. By using statements aligned to the proficiency scale, educators can more easily  create rubrics that enable learners to chart their progress.
Not an instrument for determining a letter or number grade
Growth in acquiring a language is measured over time when tasks are integrated into performance assessments and evaluated using rubrics based on the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines.

Thank you

Your input is invaluable, coming from your perspective of using this document at a classroom or department level.

Can-Do 2.0 Writing Team Facilitators
Lisa Harris, Virginia Department of Education
Paul Sandrock, ACTFL
Kathy Shelton, Ohio Department of Education