CEF test



Who uses this test?

Students enrolling in new schools or adults starting English courses to help identify their level.

Where it could be used?

It could be used either in schools or language centers.

Can I use it to asses my proficiency in English?

Yes, since the test is set according to the European standards, it can be used to assess proficiency.

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEF or CEFR) was put together by the Council of Europe as a way of standardising the levels of language exams in different regions. It is very widely used internationally and all important exams are mapped to the CEFR.

There are six levels: A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2. These are described in the table below.

Council of Europe levels Description
C2 Mastery The capacity to deal with material which is academic or cognitively demanding, and to use language to good effect at a level of performance which may in certain respects be more advanced than that of an average native speaker.
Example: CAN scan texts for relevant information, and grasp main topic of text, reading almost as quickly as a native speaker.
C1 Effective Operational Proficiency The ability to communicate with the emphasis on how well it is done, in terms of appropriacy, sensitivity and the capacity to deal with unfamiliar topics.
Example: CAN deal with hostile questioning confidently. CAN get and hold onto his/her turn to speak.
B2 Vantage The capacity to achieve most goals and express oneself on a range of topics. Example: CAN show visitors around and give a detailed description of a place.
A2 Waystage An ability to deal with simple, straightforward information and begin to express oneself in familiar contexts. Example: CAN take part in a routine conversation on simple predictable topics.
A1 Breakthrough A basic ability to communicate and exchange information in a simple way. Example: CAN ask simple questions about a menu and understand simple answers.


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