Your Language Level

It is really important that you inform us of your current English level in advance.

English Plus courses require Pre-Intermediate to Intermediate level depending on the subject, please check the individual course pages for details.

If you are unsure about your level, please read the following descriptions:

Beginners

  • Can understand simple greetings and some individual words but cannot understand the basic topic of a conversation.  
  • Can only produce simple greetings and a few international words.
  • In reading they may understand simple signs and in writing be able to write disconnected words with spelling errors.  (CEF = A1)

Elementary

  • Can understand many simple expressions of everyday basic functions in familiar situations and sometimes understand what the basic topic of a conversation in English is.  
  • Can produce understandable questions and answers involving more than basic information.  
  • In reading can follow very simplified stories or information and can write a few simple but connected sentences on a given topic.  
  • Grammar is not always correct but the writing can be understood.  (CEF = A1-A2)

Pre-Intermediate

  • Can understand the main idea of a general conversation in English but not in detail and can produce English well enough to take part if spoken carefully.  
  • Can also start a conversation by asking questions on a range of everyday topics and can perform most everyday social and practical functions.  
  • In reading can understand the full meaning (content) including details of simpler authentic texts.  
  • Can write short compositions using simple but varied structures correctly on a variety of non-specialist topics.  (CEF = A2-B1)

Intermediate

  • Can understand general conversation involving fluent speakers, provided that some allowances are made, or occasional help given.  
  • Can produce well enough to make relevant contributions and to get satisfactory information from other speakers by questioning as necessary.  
  • Is functionally competent for all everyday negotiations except when there are completely unpredictable problems.  
  • In reading can understand the general idea of authentic texts and can write effective communications of information or opinion, but with a number of errors, or problems because of inability to handle some of the more complex structures.  (CEF = B1)

Upper-Intermediate

  • Can understand well enough to hold a continuous conversation with a native speaker.
  • Can produce language well enough to start new topics, change the subject, and generally take part in the management of the conversation rather than just responding.  
  • Can manage all normal life functions with ease, and manage linguistically with completely new situations.  In reading, can understand the majority of any non-specialist, modern text and begin to respond to different ‘registers’ or types of writing.  
  • Can produce fluent writing on most kinds of topic and can use complex sentence structures without many errors.

A learner at this level should be able to achieve a good pass in the Cambridge First Certificate exam.  (CEF = B2)

Pre-Advanced

  • Can understand native speakers of everyday standard English, though may still experience difficulties with more complex interaction and themes.
  • Can produce speech fluent enough to express feeling, to argue and maintain a point of view.
  • In reading, can easily understand the majority of non-specialist modern text and respond to different ‘registers’ or types of writing.
  • Can produce fluent writing on most topics and can use complex sentence structures accurately.

A learner at this level would be a suitable candidate for the Cambridge Advanced exam. (CEF = C1)

Advanced

  • Can understand native speakers of everyday standard English, even when not being directly addressed, and can take part in normal interaction on almost the same terms as a native speaker.  
  • Can produce speech fluent enough to express feeling, to argue and maintain a point of view, or to express complex information to a listener.  
  • In reading, can use specialist books written in English to obtain specialist knowledge, can recognise and respond to different styles of writing.  
  • Can write fluently and with relatively few errors, not only on any topic but also in a range of styles.

A learner at the top of this level should be able to achieve a good pass in the Cambridge Advanced exam.  (CEF = C1-C2)

Adapted from a blog which previously appeared on englishschool.org.uk. Based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

If you are still unsure about your level after reading this, please contact us about level testing opportunities.