Student Oral Proficiency Assessment (SOPA) Training

CAL was awarded a three-year grant by the International Research and Studies Program of the U.S. Department of Education to develop a computer-based training program for an oral proficiency assessment of language learners in grades PK-8. This project, named “Oral Proficiency Assessment Training for PK-8 Language Educators”, allows CAL to update and combine our early language assessment offerings, the Student Oral Proficiency Assessment (SOPA) for grades K-8 and the Early Language Listening and Oral Proficiency Assessment (ELLOPA) for grades PK-2 into a single SOPA instrument for grades K-8 and create a sustainable, self-access online training program that will train educators in any foreign or dual language program in the use of these assessments.

The SOPA is a paired oral interview assessment that measures speaking and listening performance using a rating scale based on the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines. It can be adapted for use with any language and PK-8 context and, once administrators are trained, is free to use as an accessible, effective, and reliable way of measuring student language growth and informing classroom instruction. The SOPA Training Program will include language-specific resources such as task templates and test administration videos for Spanish and Mandarin, as well as instructions on adapting the assessments and materials for use in other languages. CAL is recruiting programs that teach English, Spanish, or Mandarin to participate in a SOPA administration video collection activity in early 2023. CAL will also be recruiting educators to review the training program later in 2023.

The SOPA Training Program is expected to be released for sale by early 2024. For more information about this project or to participate in video collection or review activities, please contact Elyssa Sun at

About the Project

Funder: U.S. Department of Education, International Research and Studies Program
October 2020 – September 2023