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Student Scholarships, Awards & Special Programs

Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy

The State Seal of Biliteracy is an award provided by state approved districts that recognizes high school graduates who attain high functional and academic levels of proficiency in English and a world language in recognition of having studied and attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation. Our vision is to help students recognize the value of their academic success and see the tangible benefits of being bilingual. The State Seal of Biliteracy takes the form of a seal that appears on the transcript or diploma of the graduating senior and is a statement of accomplishment for future employers and for college admissions.

Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy

Translated version in:    Spanish    |    Portuguese    |    Chinese (Mandarin)    |    Haitian Creole    |    Vietnamese

Seal of Biliteracy by the Numbers


Massachusetts high school graduates who have earned the Seal since 2019


Massachusetts schools and districts authorized to award the Seal in 2023
List of authorized districts


Massachusetts public institutions of higher education offering credit and/or advanced course placement to Seal-earners

What's New for SY23-24?

Guidance and General Information
Enrolling in the Seal of Biliteracy

Please follow the steps outlined below to enroll in the MA State Seal of Biliteracy on WBMS in the Department's Security Portal.

  1. Thoroughly read the most recent version of the Seal of Biliteracy Guidance (See Guidance and General Information);
  2. Ask your data collection directory administrator to assign you the role of WBMS-District Authorizer in the Security Portal. (Find your district's data collection directory administrator. All questions regarding accessing the Security Portal should be directed to this administrator.)
  3. Log into WBMS through the Department's Security Portal.
  4. When you log into WBMS in the Security Portal, click on PQA Web MonitoringLOOK ActSeal of Biliteracy. (If you do not see PQA Web Monitoring as an option, click on View Your Application List. PQA Web Monitoring should then appear as an option.)
  5. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the enrollment process.

Implementation Resources

In order to qualify for the Massachusetts Seal of Biliteracy, students must demonstrate proficiency in English and at least one other language. Provided below is a list of assessments of English Language Arts and World Languages and their corresponding minimum threshold scores that the Department has approved for demonstrating proficiency toward the Seal of Biliteracy and the Seal of Biliteracy with Distinction. Please note that districts are required to keep records of world language assessments for students who earn the State Seal of Biliteracy.

  • Accessing the insignia
    • Districts access the insignia by logging into WBMS on the Department's Security Portal and clicking PQA web monitoring → LOOK Act → Seal of Biliteracy. The image is available for download on that screen.
  • The Department does not provide awards, but districts are encouraged to recognize students who earn the State Seal of Biliteracy with medals, pins, certificates, or other district-provided recognitions.
  • DESE Letter to Graduates


Districts report the number of graduates who earned the Seal of Biliteracy through SIMS. This is the only required reporting procedure. Please contact your district's data administrator to report Seal-earning students.

  • SIMS Data Report (Required for all districts who are participating in the State Seal of Biliteracy)
    • To be completed by the district's data administrator
    • Please ensure the data administrator has the following information:
      • The names of all graduates who have earned the State Seal of Biliteracy, and
      • Whether those graduates earned the Seal of Biliteracy or the Seal of Biliteracy with Distinction.
Higher Education

The Massachusetts State Seal of Biliteracy provides colleges and universities with a method to recognize and give credit to applicants for attainment of high level skills in languages. Currently several public and private institutions of higher learning in Massachusetts provide language on their websites to provide credits for prior learning and/or advanced course placement for students who have earned the Seal of Biliteracy. Those public institutions include:

  • Bridgewater State University
  • Bunker Hill Community College
  • Cape Cod Community College
  • Massachusetts Bay Community College
  • Middlesex Community College
  • Mount Wachusett Community College
  • North Shore Community College
  • Northern Essex Community College
  • Quinsigamond Community College
  • Salem State University
  • University of Massachusetts (Amherst)
  • Worcester State University

This list continues to grow. Check back for more updates.

Resources for Institutions of Higher Education

Last Updated: June 7, 2024

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
135 Santilli Highway, Everett, MA 02149

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.