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English levels: Certificates and Examinations

English levels: Certificates and Examinations

In this article, we will develop some international certificates that enable to recognize your English level. Some partner’s schools of Courconnect propose special classes to prepare these examinations; do not hesitate to contact us or visit the website to know more about it!

 

CAMBRIDGE examinations: IELTS, CPE and BEC

Firstly, let’s discover the different English language tests proposed by the University of Cambridge. All of them have a reliable reputation to determine the proficiency and the capabilities in English Language.

The first one and one of the most popular is the IELTS. Over 2.5 million people pass this test which is a reference for admissions in educational institutions, companies, immigration agencies among others. Over 9000 organisations accept IELTS as a proof of language ability in the world.

There are two types of IELTS, Academic and General Training. The structure of the exam is the same for both but these exams have different purpose: the Academic IELTS is destined for professional English whereas the General Training is more dedicated to people who want to implant themselves in a foreign country for instance. If you are taking the IELTS for a special institution, make sure that you are taking the adequate exam; there are some organizations that are asking for one specific IELTS exam.

The number of places for each exam is limited; the first person who arrives is the first person who obtains the inscription. The best for you is to register yourself 2 months before the date of the exam. The registration will cost you approximately 250€ (5000 pesos), it depends of the type of the exam and the place you are taking it.

You can take the exam in the majority of the countries of the world. So, there are obviously sessions in UK and Ireland but also in Argentina!

 

 

Where and when could you take the exam in 2018?

In Argentina you can take the exam in:

  • Buenos Aires
    • In the British Council, there are sessions on 20th of January, 1st of February and 3rd of March (General Training and Academic)
    • In St Alban’s College there is a session of Academic IELTS on May 19th.

There are also some dates in Buenos Aires and Cordoba in December 2018 to take the IELTS but they are still unavailable.

In the English speaking countries, there are much more sessions. For instance, in London there are 7 official centres which offer an Academic IELTS session by week and a General Training IELTS every two weeks from January 3rd to December 15th of 2018.

There are lot of sessions too in Ireland but less than in England. Hereunder you can find tables with different sessions of IELTS in 2018 according to the city and the exam centre

 

  • Dublin
General Training Academic
UCD January 20

March 8 and 24

April 7 and 21

May 12

July 7 and 28

September 8 and 29

December 1

 

January 20

February 3 and 24

March 3 and 24

April 7 and 21

May 12

June 7, 23 and 30

July 7 and 28

August 11 and 25

September 8 and 29

October 13 and 20

November 3 and 17

December 1

 

CES Dublin January 6, 13 and 20

February 3, 10 and 24

March 3, 10 and 24

April 7, 14 and 21

May 5, 12 and 19

June 2, 23 and 30

July 7, 21 and 28

August 11, 18 and 25

September 8, 15 and 29

October 13, 20 and 17

November 3, 10 and 17

December 1, 8 and 15

 

January 6, 13 and 20

February 3, 10 and 24

March 3, 10 and 24

April 7, 14 and 21

May 5, 12 and 19

June 2, 23 and 30

July 7, 21 and 28

August 11, 18 and 25

September 8, 15 and 29

October 13, 20 and 17

November 3, 10 and 17

December 1, 8 and 15

 

 

  • Galway
General Training Academic
CES Galway May 12

July 7

September 8

October 13

 

January 13

February 3

March 10

April 14

May 12

June 23

July 7

August 11

September 8

October 13

November 3

December 8

 

 

  • Cork
General Training Academic
CEC St-Patrick’s Bridge February 10

March 24

April 7 and 21

May 12

June 2  and 30

July 7 and 28

September 8 and 29

October 13

December 1

 

January 13

February 10 and 24

March 10 and 24

April 7 and 21

May 5,12 and 19

June 2, 23 and 30

July 7 and 28

August 11 and 25

September 8 and 29

October 13 and 20

November 3 and 17

December 1

 

More information on: https://takeielts.britishcouncil.org/

 

 

The test lasts approximately 3 hours in total and the score obtained is between 1 and 9. In this exam, you will progressively be tested on your writing, reading, listening and speaking abilities. According to the score obtained in IELTS, you could visualize, in the table hereunder, your level in CEFR or according to the Cambridge English Scale.

 

 

IELTS note 4.5 5 5.5 6 6.5 7 7.5 8 8.5 9
Equivalent CES 150 158 165 172 180 187 195 203 207 212
Equivalent CEFR B1 B1+ B2- B2 B2+ C1 C1+ C2- C2 C2+

 

If you need to have an official recognition of your English level, do not hesitate and pass the IELTS. With more than 1100 locations in 140 countries, you will easily find an exam centre near to your home. Moreover, you receive your results just few days after the exam.

[For more details about IELTS, check out the official Cambridge website here]

 

Then for those with an excellent English level, there is a specific exam called CPE (Cambridge English Proficiency). The exam indicates that you have an excellent level of English (C2), and that you could communicate easily with a native. It helps especially for the people who want to integrate prestigious universities in UK, or abroad. Concerning the structure, it’s a 4-hour test with 4 tests of oral and written comprehension and expression. You will receive a note between 200 and 230 to determine your proficiency.

[For more details about CPE, check out the official Cambridge website here]

 

There is another exam proposed by Cambridge called BEC (English Business Certificates) designed for professionals. This exam enables to certificate a certain level of English in a professional context and is especially useful for people working in business, supply chain, administration, etc. The BEC is available in three levels: preliminary (B1), vantage (B2) and higher (C1).

[For more details about BEC,, check out the official Cambridge website here]

 

ISE examinations:

CAMBRIDGE is not the only institution which provides reliable English Certifications. In London, the Trinity College propose different tests to evaluate your English level, such as the ISE examinations.

Integrated Skills in English (ISE) is an exam provided by the Trinity College of London which justifies a certain level of English, from A2 to C2. The ISE qualification is a reliable evidence of English Language proficiency around the world while the Trinity institution is recognised by exams regulator Ofqual.

The exam determines the English capabilities for a student through reading and listening tasks that stimulates the 4 areas of language learning: reading, writing, listening and speaking. It is, at the same time intended for students, professionals and even teachers that want a reliable recognition for their English level.

It exists 5 different levels for ISE exam, depending on the level.

  • ISE Foundation (A2):
  • ISE I (B1)
  • ISE II (B2)
  • ISE III (C1)
  • ISE IV (C2)

Except for ISE IV (C2), ISE exam has globally the same structure whatever the level. It is divided in 2 parts, one that focus on Reading & Writing and another about Speaking & Listening.

The structure of the Reading & Writing part is the same for the 4 first tests: 2 Reading tasks, 1 Reading into writing task and 1 Writing task for a total of 2 hours of test. Then, the Speaking & Listening part differ according to the level, A2 and B1 level tests are composed of 2 listening and 2 speaking tasks while B2 and C1 level tests are made of 3 listening tasks and 1 speaking task. More the level is important and more the Speaking & Listening tasks lasts (from 13mn in A2 to 25mn in C1).

Concerning the C2 test, the structure is much more different, there are 3 tasks:

  • The Portfolio: It is a task prepared 6 to 12 weeks before the exam. You will have to choose 3 on 15 writing tasks available and return the portfolio for the official exam date.
  • Controlled Written Exam: It is composed of 2 reading into writing tasks and 1 writing task for a total of 3 hours.
  • The Interview: 4 speaking tasks and 1 listening task during 25 minutes

 

Where and when could you take the exam in 2018?

You have to register between 6 and 9 weeks before the exam and it cost from 140€ to 250€ according to the level.

In Argentina, there are two sessions in October and November (or December) each year.

There are much more sessions in Ireland and UK, hereunder you could find the calendar of 2018:

  • January 17
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • February 7
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • March 7
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • April 11
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • May 9
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II, ISE III and ISE IV
  • May 26
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • June 13
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • June 30
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • July 18
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • August 8
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • September 12
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • October 3
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III
  • November 14
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II, ISE III and ISE IV
  • December 12
    • ISE Foundation, ISE I, ISE II and ISE III

More information in: http://www.trinitycollege.co.uk/site/?id=612

[For more details about ISE, check out the official Trinity College website here]

 

>> See all the preparatory courses proposed by Courconnect partner schools<<

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