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NEWL (former known as Prototype Russian AP Exam)
NEWL® Russian Language and Culture Exam


NEWL® Russian Language and Culture Exam is intended for secondary school students who have completed a minimum of two to three years (or the equivalent) of academic work in Russian language and culture, and is equivalent to an advanced-level college Russian course. Both traditional and heritage learners are encouraged to take the Russian AP Course and Examination, a standards-oriented, advanced-level course, which will enrich students of all backgrounds in understanding Russian culture and furthering language proficiency.


The principal performance metric for the NEWL® Russian Language and Culture Examination is proficiency, and does not measure achievement, or the accumulation of specific grammatical, literary, or historical knowledge. Test specifications reflect the most recent draft of the College Board’s “Framework Document for the Assessment of World Languages” (2006), and the proficiency guidelines developed by ACTFL. Test items are based on the tasks, skill domains, and performance indicators published in Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century.   The Standards and the ACTFL Performance Guidelines for K-12 Learners represent some of the best current thinking among second language specialists about how well students should perform in a foreign language, taking into account the student’s particular stage in the learning process and the relative difficulty of the target language.


NEWL® Russian Examination is an Internet-distributed linear test requiring approximately 5 hours for administration. During the online administration, examinees are assessed on their reading and listening comprehension, and their ability to complete natural dialogues and to provide contextually appropriate written responses in tasks requiring a combination of receptive skills. In addition to the online portion of the examination, Russian AP® students also take an oral proficiency assessment, given by a qualified tester at a pre-designated time.

New Info***

The State of Maryland recognizes the benefits of a diverse student population, provides opportunities to develop language skills outside the classroom and has created a framework for local systems to award a Seal of Biliteracy to qualified students. To receive a Maryland Seal of Biliteracy, a student must:


1. Pass the Maryland High School Assessment in English 10; AND

2. Demonstrate Intermediate High proficiency (minimum score of 4) in listening, speaking, reading and writing in a language other than English, as measured by assessments that are aligned to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency guidelines.


Since NEWL is recognized by ACTFL as an assessment of high proficiency in one or more languages in addition to English, and if a student scores 4 or 5 on Russian NEWL the Maryland the Seal of Biliteracy achievement is included in his/her school’s records and, if appropriate, the Seal of Biliteracy achievement is included in his/her graduation documentation.


To prepare for the NEWL exam a student must attend Russian AP Program provided The Russian School “Olympus” and to take a practice and the main exam., conducted by ACTFL.


For more information, please call 202-285-2883.

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