Tester & Rater Certifications

Training and certification programs to meet the needs of world language educators, researchers, and administrators

OPI tester certificate sample
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Certification Types

The awarding of an ACTFL certification is a validation of one’s understanding of the principles and concepts of proficiency-based language assessment and of one’s ability to apply theory to practice in language teaching and learning settings.

ACTFL offers tester and rater certifications in four assessments:

OPI Blue
Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) Tester Certification

Full OPI Certification (through the Superior proficiency range) and Limited OPI Certification (up to the Intermediate High proficiency range)

Need a certificate for licensure?

Many State Departments of Teacher Credentialing require those applying for World Language and Bilingual Teacher Credentialing to demonstrate a specific minimum proficiency level in speaking and writing through an official ACTFL certificate. This requirement is fulfilled by taking the appropriate ACTFL Assessment(s). The ACTFL Tester Certification is not required.

Certification Prerequisites

To apply to become a certified tester or rater, candidates must meet the following general prerequisites:Affiliation with an accredited academic institution as defined by ACTFL*Possession of an undergraduate degree in a related fieldMinimal proficiency level of Advanced-Mid for Limited Certification and a Superior for Full Certification in the language of training.*An academic institution is an accredited school, college, or university where foreign languages are taught. The term affiliation with an academic institution is defined as a current faculty and/or staff member who is involved in the instruction or evaluation of language students. Private language companies that offer translation services or language testing do not qualify under ACTFL’s definition of an academic institution. Private for-profit companies also do not qualify.

Want to learn more?

  • Weekly Online Office Hours: Have your certification questions answered by joining one of our virtual office hours, which are hosted by the Certifications and Quality Assurance team.


    Thursdays from 3:00 to 4:00 pm ET. Register to attend this session here.

  • Email the ACTFL Certification Specialists at opicert@hnkkl.com. (Please note that this program receives a high volume of emails. It may take up to 48 hours for a response.)
  • OPI Certification Webinars: (for enrolled OPI Certification Candidates)

ACTFL hosts a 6 pm EST webinar once a month for enrolled OPI Certification Candidates. Each webinar is conducted by ACTFL’s Certification Specialist and is co-hosted by an OPI Master Tester along with a newly certified OPI Tester. OPI certification candidates can find webinar dates and registration information on ACTFL’s Certification Learning Portal.

Certification Appeals Process

ACTFL is committed to a transparent certification process. While not all individuals who apply for certification achieve it, ACTFL convenes an Appeals Committee on a quarterly basis to reconsider certification decisions. Candidates for an appeal must meet the following criteria:

  • Certification materials were evaluated inaccurately

    and/or

  • There were extenuating circumstances that did not allow for a fair assessment of a candidate’s testing/rating performance

For detailed information on the certification appeals process, visit Tester & Rater Certification Appeals Process.