Arabic Placement Tests
(studying for the final exam)
Everytime I start a new Arabic class I get put into some random level. I'm not sure there is a standard for any language but for Arabic it especially seems somewhat random.
After 2 years at one university I took a summer intensive at UCLA and started in the Advanced level. While I think I could have kept up with the class they were starting beyond my level of grammar so I was having a hard time at first, as were half the class, the teacher meanwhile was horrible and impatient. Every other student except one complained bitterly about their experience there to me. So I took Intermediate and actually learned quite a bit of grammar, which my previous school wasn't so focused on.
Everyone in the states seems to use Al-Kitaab except for a few places which try to seem above it all in their view but really this series is the standard, despite their weird approaches to grammar.
Here at Damascus University I took the placement test this morning with about thirty other students.
It was nearly impossible to do. Another guy who is more advanced in Al-Kitaab than I (he finished book 2, I am at book 2 chapter 7 about said that the test was incredibly hard.
It is in four parts: listening, reading, grammar and writing and vocab.
The first part was the hardest, listen to some paragraphs twice and answer a bunch of questions in like ten minutes. The rest of the test was just too many questions with too little time. The grammar was fifty questions with a fill in the blank and four potential answers (to be done in thirty minutes) - so you had four different possible answers with four different vowel markings and some really difficult placement in the sentence.
I have no idea what to do, will I be placed in Beginner 2 or something? I thought I was a bit more advanced than that but who knows.
Tomorrow morning I will board the bus for the university and try to find my name on the wall and see what level I got put in.
Maybe it's ABC's for me again.
I placed in level 4 which was Intermediate (and which I'll flush out a bit later about the details). There were a mix of students in the class who at first were in the wrong class, a couple were in too high of a class and a couple tested out of level 4 to level 5 (high Intermediate or something).
I think I could have tested out but I did actually learn a lot of new stuff and because there are only 8 levels and you finish one level in a month it's not like there is a huge difference between levels 4-8 (more on this at a later time as well).
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