More About Foreign Language Evaluations
Understanding the language requirement for your host country is a very important part of the application process for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. You are required to have the language skills you need to complete your proposed Fulbright project.
When Language Skills Are Required
A professional language teacher, ideally a faculty member, must complete a Foreign Language Evaluation Form for you. You must register this person in the Fulbright portal. Please provide the person with this guidance. In addition, you, as the applicant, are required to fill out the Language Self Evaluation Form, which is located in the online application.
From Fulbright: “Submission of both forms is mandatory, even if you have advanced skills or native-speaker ability. The application system will not allow the submission of an application if a required Foreign Language Evaluation form is not registered. Failure to submit the required language forms may affect your eligibility.”
When Language Skills Are Recommended/Not Required
In some cases, a program may recommend, but not require language skill. However, you will still want to share your language skills if relevant to your proposed host country. You can do this by submitting a Foreign Language Evaluation Form and completing the Language Self Evaluation Form.
From Fulbright: “It will be advantageous to have your language ability documented, even though it is not required for the award. Remember, even if a country indicates that English will be sufficient for carrying out the proposed project, for purposes of Community Engagement, at least a basic level of language skill should be obtained prior to leaving the United States for the host country.”
Plans to Learn a Language
In a situation where language skill is not required for a grant, but you will work to develop proficiency before the Fulbright grant begins, you can illuminate your plan in the Language Self Evaluation Form. Do not have a professor complete a Foreign Language Evaluation Form in this case.
The application question reads: “If you do not currently have the level of language proficiency necessary to communicate effectively, orally and in writing, in the host country language, indicate what you are doing now and what you plan to do to bring your language facility to an acceptable level by the time a grant would begin․”
When English Is a Language of the Host Country
No forms need to be submitted if English is one of the languages of the host country. That said, if your project requires skill in a language other than English, you will still need to submit the forms.
Who Should Complete the FLE Form?
For Commonly-Taught Languages: The Foreign Language Evaluation should be completed by a professional language teacher, preferably a university professor. The language evaluator cannot be related to the applicant.
For Less-Commonly-Taught Languages: If a professional language teacher is not readily available, a college-educated native-speaker of the language can be used. The language evaluator cannot be related to the applicant.
Can My Language Evaluator Also Recommend Me?
Yes, the same individual can submit the Foreign Language Evaluation Form and write a recommendation for you. Be sure, if you plan to do this, to register the individual twice: as a recommender and as the foreign language evaluator.
More From Fulbright:
ETA: Foreign Language Forms
Study/Research: Foreign Language Forms