Effective April 2017, college bound secondary education students in the United States will be able to earn college placement and college credits for Portuguese as a foreign language’.
To qualify, students will take the National Examinations in World Languages (NEWL), a test developed by the American Councils for International Education and recognized by the Advanced Placement Program of the College Board.
The NEWL is a language assessment exam that provides heritage language speakers and traditional language learners the opportunity to earn college placement and/or credit based on their proficiency on a critical foreign language, namely Arabic, Korean, Portuguese, and Russian.
In a prepared statement, Portugal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs remarked, “[T]his decision will benefit, in particular, the Portuguese and the Portuguese-descendant communities in the United States.” The process to include the Portuguese language in the NEWL was conducted by the Portuguese diplomatic and consular network in the United States, the statement added.
The Portuguese language, the 6th most useful language for business, is spoken by 263 million (2015) in Europe, South America, Africa and Asia. In 2050 Portuguese will be spoken globally by an estimated 390 million and in 2100 by a projected 400 million.
Portuguese is now recognized as a working language by European Union, the Mercosul, the African Union, the Organization of Ibero-American States, and the Organization of American States, among other world organizations.
A motion was approved recently to add Portuguese as the 7th official language of the United Nations in addition to Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish. May 5th is the International Day of the Portuguese Language and Culture.