Seal of Biliteracy

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Singapore American School is proud to offer the Seal of Biliteracy to students in the graduating classes of 2019 and beyond. The Seal of Biliteracy will help students with high levels of proficiency in languages taught at SAS to be more widely acknowledged as biliterate individuals.

Why offer the Seal of Biliteracy?

The Seal of Biliteracy serves to formally certify attainment of biliteracy for students and is recognized at SAS on high school diplomas. It is a statement of accomplishment that helps to signal a student’s readiness for multilingual career and college settings as well as for engagement as a global citizen. It is an award that is receiving national attention in the United States and is already given by secondary schools located in the 35 US states (and Washington, D.C.) that had approved Seal of Biliteracy legislation as of December 1st, 2018.

In which languages is the Seal of Biliteracy offered?

During the 2018-19 school year, high school students at SAS are eligible to earn a Seal of Biliteracy in world languages offered at SAS - i.e., Mandarin Chinese, French, and Spanish. Graduates in the class of 2019 will be the first to be awarded the Seal.

What are the requirements?

  • Students must demonstrate proficiency in both English and a world language offered at SAS.
    • Proficiency in English.  To satisfy the English language requirement, a student must meet expectations (i.e., earn a semester grade of B or higher) in any 10th-, 11th-, or 12th-grade English course offered at SAS.

    • Proficiency in World Languages.  To satisfy the world language requirement, a student must demonstrate Intermediate High-level proficiency based on the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines in all four modes of communication.  The four modes of communication are speaking, listening, reading, and writing. There are several ways to do this:

      • Students who have completed the AP examination in one of the three languages offered at SAS by the end of 11th grade may demonstrate proficiency by earning a 4 or a 5 on the associated AP examination.
      • Students who have completed (or are enrolled in) AT Chinese Language may demonstrate proficiency by earning a Semester 1 grade of B or higher.
      • Alternately, students may take school-designated external assessments to confirm that they have reached or exceeded these target levels of proficiency in all four modes.  The school has designated the STAMP assessment as the official external assessments of world language proficiency.
      • To ensure consistency, other assessments of proficiency are not recognized within this process.
         
  • Students must submit an online application form - click here.  In order to receive the Seal of Biliteracy at the end of the current academic year, students must submit the form prior to the final day of Semester 1 each year.

How much does the Seal of Biliteracy cost?

The cost to families depends upon the manner in which students opt to demonstrate world language proficiency.
  • If a student elects to demonstrate proficiency via an AP examination, the cost to families is approximately 204 SGD (including GST) per administration.
  • If a student elects to demonstrate proficiency via the STAMP assessments, the cost to families is approximately 50 SGD per student per administration.

How do I know if the Seal of Biliteracy is right for me?

  • Earning a Seal of Biliteracy will help students to indicate via their resumes that they have high levels of externally validated language proficiency. While the Seal of Biliteracy is not expected to be a differentiator in the college admission process, awareness of the Seal of Biliteracy among employers increases with each passing year, particularly in the United States.
  • If a student has earned a 4 or a 5 on an AP examination associated with a world language course offered at SAS, then we would strongly encourage that student to apply for the Seal of Biliteracy. If a student has earned a semester grade of B or higher in AT Chinese Language, then we would strongly encourage that student to apply for the Seal of Biliteracy.
  • If a student has successfully completed the Intermediate High multi-year course or the Advanced course at the high school, he/she is likely to be a strong candidate for the Seal of Biliteracy. Those currently enrolled in an Intermediate High world language course should seek the guidance of the current world language teacher.
  • The Seal of Biliteracy may not be right for you if you are a native speaker of a world language but have not formally studied the language.
  • The Seal of Biliteracy is only offered at SAS for world languages taught at SAS. It is not offered for other languages.

How do I apply?

  • Following the completion of 11th-grade, enrolled SAS students may request consideration by submitting an application via Google form to the SAS Director of World Languages. This application must be submitted by the final day of Semester 1 each year.
  • The application must include any past scores received on language proficiency examinations (i.e., AP or STAMP). If a student has not already earned an adequate score, he or she may register for the tests offered in January.
  • The Director of World Languages in collaboration with the High School World Languages Department Chair will review each student’s application, register the students for the assessment and make arrangements for the testing, and then make a determination by March 15th of each school year regarding whether the student will be awarded the Seal of Biliteracy.
  • The Seal of Biliteracy is awarded via a certificate ceremony and, if the student graduates from SAS, is acknowledged formally on the high school diploma.

When can I take the STAMP assessments?

The STAMP assessments will be offered to students once per year (in January). This year, students may register to take these assessments after school on Tuesday, January 29th, 2019.

For more information, please contact Sally Lean, Director of World Languages.

Email Sally Lean

How do I prepare for the STAMP assessments?

SAS does not offer or recommend dedicated test preparation for the STAMP assessments. The world language program at SAS is designed to support the growth of students’ proficiency. The STAMP assessments are a measure of language proficiency and are well-aligned with our curricula. Students who have reached the appropriate levels in our course sequence should already be strong candidates for the Seal of Biliteracy.