If an Avant test includes a writing section a virtual keyboard may be needed for typing appropriate characters. Please read below to determine which steps, if any, must be completed prior to testing.

Languages That DON'T Need A Keyboard Loaded


English, Filipino (Tagalog), French, German, Haitian Creole, Ilocano, Italian, Samoan, Somali Maay & Maxaa, Spanish, Yup'ik

For the languages listed above, the test will include a character box where the appropriate symbols and accented letters are included and can be clicked. No additional action is required to set up a virtual keyboard for these languages.


Languages That DO Need A Keyboard Loaded

Arabic, Armenian, Cantonese, Chinese (Mandarin) Simplified & Traditional, Hebrew, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Russian, Tamil, Vietnamese

The languages listed above all require that a virtual keyboard is loaded. A standard keyboard will be used to type characters corresponding with the virtual keyboard. There are a couple options for activating these virtual keyboards.


Option 1: Using Google Chrome's Input Tools

A quick and easy solution for loading a web-based virtual keyboard if you are using the Google chrome browser. Please follow the steps on this page.


Option 2: Computer's Built-In Virtual Keyboard

Most computer operating systems include virtual language keyboards found in the control panel or computer settings. Click on the links below to see detailed instructions for your operating system:



Handwritten Writing Section?

If your organization is administering a special handwritten option for the writing section of the test, please refer to the Handwritten Writing Section Guide.


Printed Keyboard Layouts & On-Screen Keyboards

Test takers are allowed to have a printed copy of their keyboard layout or use an on-screen keyboard during the test. We allow this exception to the "no paper" rule as long as test takers do not have access to a pen or pencil to write anything on it. Keyboard layouts and steps to use on-screen keyboards are provided in the operating system specific guides above.



Pinyin or Romaji?

Test Takers may use a Romanized version (such as Pinyin or Romaji) of a character-based language. However, in doing so, the test taker will top-out at the novice-high level. In order to score at the intermediate level or higher, test takers must show the ability to use characters. 

  • Pinyin is the Romanization of the Chinese characters based on their pronunciation. In Mandarin Chinese, the phrase "Pin Yin" literally translates into "spell sound." In other words, spelling out Chinese phrases with letters from the English alphabet.
  • Romaji is the Romanization of the Japanese characters based on their pronunciation. In Japanese, the phrase "Romaji" literally translates into "roman letters." In other words, spelling out Japanese phrases with letters from the English alphabet.