Oral English Proficiency Program (A-35.1)
Original Implementation: September, 1990
Last Revision: October 12, 2009
Legislation enacted by the Texas Legislature requires instruction at public colleges and universities to be delivered in understandable English. Each public institution is required to adopt a policy establishing a procedure to ensure that proficient English is spoken by all faculty members. "Faculty member" means a person who teaches a course offered for academic credit by an institution of higher education, including teaching assistants, instructors, lab assistants, research assistants, lecturers, assistant professors, associate professors and full professors.
A faculty member may use a foreign language to conduct foreign language courses designed to be taught in a foreign language. A faculty member may also provide individual assistance during course instruction to a non-English-speaking student in the native language of the student.
New faculty members, as defined in this policy, who do not identify English as their primary language shall be offered two options to demonstrate their oral proficiency in English:
- Take and pass the locally administered Speaking Proficiency English Assessment Kit (SPEAK) test with a score of 45.
- Allow observation of a regularly scheduled class by a two person team from the university’s American English Language Institute (AELI). The observation shall occur during the first two weeks of employment. Both members of the team must agree that the faculty member’s English oral proficiency is equivalent to a score of 45 on the SPEAK exam.
The chair shall place in the faculty member’s employment file the results of the oral proficiency performance. A copy of the English proficiency outcome shall be forwarded to the appropriate dean.
Faculty members who do not demonstrate proficiency in oral English shall be required to complete successfully a program conducted by the AELI. Texas law requires the faculty member to bear the costs of the program.
Cross Reference: Tex. Educ. Code §51.917
Responsible for Implementation: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Contact For Revision: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs