Seal of Biliteracy
About the Seal of Biliteracy
The New York State Seal of Biliteracy (NYSSB) was established to recognize high school graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages, in addition to English.
It takes the form of a special seal that is affixed to the student’s diploma. The honor is also noted on the student’s official transcript.
The intent of the New York State Seal of Biliteracy is to:
- Affirm the value of diversity in a multilingual society
- Encourage the study of languages
- Identify high school graduates with language and biliteracy skills for employers
- Provide universities with additional information about applicants seeking admission
- Prepare students with twenty-first century skills
- Recognize the value of world and home language instruction in schools
All students wishing to earn the Seal of Biliteracy must earn a NYS Regents diploma and demonstrate proficiency in both English and a World Language by earning points in various ways described below. In almost all cases, students will complete a Culminating Project in either English or a World Language.
Criteria for Demonstrating Proficiency in English (3 points required)
- NYS English Regents – minimum 80% (1 point)
- For ELLs – score above 75% on two Regents, without translation (1 point)
- For ELLS – score 290 above in grades 9-12 on NYSESLAT (1 point)
- English 11 & 12 – class average of 85% or above (1 point)
- AP Language or Literature – 3 or higher (1 point)
- Culminating Project in English (2 points)
Criteria for Demonstrating Proficiency in a World Language (3 points required)
- Checkpoint C level World Language Course – class average of 85% or above (1 point)
- Checkpoint C World Language Assessment – minimum score varies (1 point)
- Culminating Project in the Target Language (2 points)
- Three years of foreign language study in a foreign country grade 8 and beyond (1 point)
Applying for the program
The Seal of Biliteracy application is contained in the handbook linked below, along with an in-depth look at the academic components of the program.