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The ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines were created by the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages in order to provide a means of assessing the proficiency of a foreign language speaker.

The guidelines are broken up into different proficiency levels, each of which is further subdivided: novice, intermediate, advanced, and superior. Additionally, these proficiency levels may refer to one's ability to listen, speak, read or write. For example, most American students of foreign languages reach the advanced level in reading and writing only. Since the American system focuses on written language more than spoken language, their proficiency in speaking and listening is much lower than their ability to read and write.

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