Spanish Heritage Language (SHL) Test
Before the Test Begins
Have the Test Codes (Username) and Passwords ready (For each testing group there will be a Student Test Code and Password, and a Teacher Test Code and Password.)
Where appropriate, have a list of authorized test takers and/or ask test takers to provide photo ID
Have students’ ID numbers available, if they are being used for the required Student ID field on the Student Profile (if not, be prepared to advise students on what to enter)
Ensure that test takers are using a supported browser – Please see our Assessment Technology Guide
Ensure that headsets are plugged in before the test takers start the test
Inform test takers how much time is allowed for this testing session
Direct test takers to read the instructions in each section of the test carefully
Have a printout of this Avant SHL Test Proctoring Guide handy
In situations where a teacher was not available to prepare test takers, read the Avant STAMP 4S Test Taker Guide and decide if any of the information should be shared with test takers
Rules for Taking an Avant Test
Avant Assessment’s online language proficiency tests must be taken in a proctored environment with a proctor who is authorized by the organization sponsoring the test.
Avant’s test utilizes spontaneous, unrehearsed situations to measure real-world language proficiency. The purpose of this assessment is to measure what you are able to do with the language without the support of any translators, reference material (including taking notes during any portion of the assessment) or assistance of any kind.
- The use of dictionaries, textbooks, cell phones, paper, pens, or other support materials (paper-based or electronic). The only time test takers should have access to pens or pencils is if the Writing section is being administered as handwritten.
- Taking or using notes of any kind (digital or handwritten) for any portion of the test, including the Speaking, Writing, and Expressive sections.
- Writing down a Speaking or Expressive response and using it as your recorded response. This will lower your score for that response, and it may be scored as a ZERO because it involves the use of paper or reference material.
- Using additional computer or smartphone applications (e.g., Word, email, chat) or having other browser windows open during testing.
- The use of Google Translate or any other translation aid (paper-based or electronic).
- Using copy-paste, printing, screen capture apps/tools, video conferencing, messaging tools, or scanning and taking pictures/videos with your phone.
- Sharing information about questions or prompts on the test with anyone.
- Corresponding with anyone other than the proctor during the test. Or, receiving any advice or help from anyone during the test.
- Using violent, profane or inappropriate language in your responses. This will lower your score for that response and it will be scored as a ZERO.
Violating any of these rules may invalidate your assessment results. We recommend also referring to your organization’s policy on academic dishonesty. Learn more about Test Security and Integrity.
To Begin Testing
The test proctor should provide test takers with the information below. The information can be written on a whiteboard or projected on a screen. If you decide to distribute this information to test takers on slips of paper, be sure to collect the paper after testing.
The testing group’s Avant SHL Test Code (Username)
The testing group’s Avant SHL Test Password
Guidance for filling in the Login Name field:
Login Name must be between 1-25 characters on the login page. Login Name should be any combination of letters, numbers, or any of the following special characters: @ (at symbol); _ (underscore); – (hyphen); . (period); , (comma); ‘ (single quote).
Login Name must be unique within the testing group (Do not use the Login Name “student”)
Be sure you remember how you entered your Login Name because if you need to resume you will need to use the same Login Name you started the test with previously.
If a test taker has taken the test previously using the same Test Code, we recommend using the same Login Name, with the number 2 added at the end
Instructions for filling in the Student ID field on the Student Profile
Instruct students on the order of the test: The Avant SHL Test begins with a set of demographic questions followed by a Lexical (Vocabulary) section. After the Lexical section, the test test taker will either exit the test, or with a high enough score, continue on to the Dictation, Translation, Sentence Completion, and Verb Conjugation sections. At this point, the test taker will either exit the test or, with a high enough score, continue to the last two sections: Speaking and Writing. Test takers will have three (3) minutes of recording time for the Speaking response and up to 2500 characters (400-600 words) for the Writing response. The Avant SHL Test design diagram is available here.
Instructions for stopping the test at a certain point or directions to continue until the test is complete
During the Test
The proctor must remain in the testing area throughout testing. Circulate while the testing is taking place to ensure that no paper, pens, pencils, cell phones, etc. are being used. Make sure that no additional windows or applications (such as Word, email or web browsers) are open or launched during testing. Make sure that no dictionaries, textbooks or other support materials are being used.
Any infractions to the above regulations are to result in the immediate logging out of the individual test taker’s test by the proctor (by closing the browser), and the suspension of testing for that individual test taker. Such incidents shall be reported to the Testing Coordinator.
As a proctor, you can assist test takers with logging in, answering their profile questions, proper use of their headsets, computer issues, and resuming a test.
Please circulate among the test takers to ensure they are following instructions and progressing smoothly. During the Speaking section, make sure test takers are recording successfully.
You can also use the Teacher Login to monitor the progress of test taking, such as who has finished and who still needs to work on another section of the test.
Do not help with anything that is related to the content of the test items.
If a test taker needs to resume the test due to lost connection (or any other reason), the login information will need to be entered exactly as originally entered. Avant SHL Test should resume from the point at which the test taker left off. If the Student Profile screen appears instead, the test taker must STOP the test. This indicates that the Login Name entered this time is different than it was originally entered. If necessary, the teacher or proctor can use the Teacher Login to look up the test taker name.
Please login to the Teacher Report Page to monitor test taker logins to ensure that students have completed the test and that they have not created unnecessary duplicate test logins.
After the Testing Session
After testing is completed, the test proctor or test coordinator may log in to the Avant Login Page to view test results for test takers who exit the test before the Writing and Speaking sections. The Test Coordinator will be able to access the results and share them with the test taker. If the test taker completes the Writing and Speaking portions of the test, the results for the entire test will be available in 3 to 5 business days.
After rating is complete, the proctor or test coordinator may print individual test taker reports or download an Excel file of test results. Do not allow the test takers to access the teacher report page or see other test taker scores.
Updated February 2023