Office for Prior Learning Assessment

Seal of Biliteracy

The Maine Department of Education awards the Seal of Biliteracy to qualified high school students who are proficient in English and an additional language. Students receive a seal affixed to their diploma and the Seal of Biliteracy is included on their high school transcripts.

Information about the Seal on the Maine DOE website can be found here. Information regarding programs in other states can be found here. 

USM recognizes the knowledge demonstrated by students who have earned the Seal of Biliteracy, both in and outside the state of Maine. Students matriculating at USM who have earned the seal will be eligible for the following: 

American Sign Language = ASL 201 + ASL 202 (8 cr total) 

Arabic = ARA 201 + ARA 202 (8 cr total) 

Chinese = LAN 201 + LAN 202 (8 cr total) 

French = FRE 201 + FRE 202 (8 cr total) 

German = GER 201 + GER 202 (8 cr total) 

Italian = ITA 201 + ITA 202 (8 cr total) 

Spanish = SPA 201 + SPA 202 (8 cr total) 

Other languages = LAN 201 + LAN 202 (8 cr total) 

Students who earn the Seal of Biliteracy with a score of at least advanced-low on the ACTFL OPI, an advanced score on the AAPPL speaking and listening sections, or a score of at least 3 on the ASLPI will earn an additional four credits at the 300 level:  ASL 305 for the ASL Seal and 3XX for all other languages.  Students who have taken these exams in the course of earning the Seal the Biliteracy should contact the PLA Office directly about submitting their scores. 

All students earning the Seal will be considered to have fulfilled the Cultural Interpretation requirement for USM's Core Curriculum. FRE 202, SPA 202 and ITA 202 also fulfill the International requirement.

Please Note:

  • USM students can earn a maximum of 8 credits per level (100, 200, 300) by exam for each language.
  • Students who receive credit for Foreign Language course equivalents through Advanced Placement (AP) Examination cannot receive credit through the Seal of Biliteracy for the same language.
  • Credits earned from the Seal of Biliteracy do not satisfy the foreign language requirement of the International Studies track in the Political Science major.   

Students will be informed by an email to their maine.edu account when any Seal of Biliteracy credits are posted. Students who have questions about the Seal, or believe they are eligible for credit they have not received, should contact the PLA Office at 207-780-4663 or priorlearningusm@maine.edu