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General English Exams

Among Our 19 Qualifications, There are 10 General English exam levels.
please see samples of each Below:

Level 1: "First Step"

At this level, the student has a basic vocabulary recognition of about 100 words (such as colours, numbers, family members and items in the home); can read and follow simple instructions and can understand the language of basic identification.

Level 2: "Junior"

At this level, the student has a basic vocabulary recognition of about 200 words (the First Step words, plus 100 more from familiar categories such as parts of the body, animals, food and means of transport); knows how to describe present actions; can identify and describe basic locations and positions; can follow a short, simple written text.

Level 3: "Primary"

At this level, the student has a basic active vocabulary of about 400 words (from the previous levels plus familiar categories like jobs, feelings and weather); can tell the time; can describe present actions; give personal and family information; describe habits, routines, and everyday activities; can communicate when and how often an action or event takes place; can form questions and negatives.

Level 4: "Preliminary"

Preliminary is the first of the levels to divide the language tested into separate skills: reading (including use of English), writing, listening, and speaking. The speaking is optional. It is also the first of the steps in our 10-step system to reach a Common European Framework of Reference level (A1).

At this level, the student has a basic active vocabulary of about 800 words; can communicate present and past events; recently completed actions and life experiences; can communicate where things are and when things happen; can express opposites, comparisons and ownership; can ask questions, answer questions, and write full sentence.

Level 5: "Elementary"

Elementary is A2 on the Common European Framework of Reference.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: increased vocabulary; future tenses; present perfect; past continuous; used to; modals; expressing purpose; question tags; relative pronouns; reflexive pronouns; adverbs; some phrasal and prepositional verbs.

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Level 6: "Pre-Intermediate"

Pre-Intermediate is A2+ on the Common European Framework of Reference.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: increased vocabulary; the passive; the second conditional; the present perfect continuous; the gerund and non-finite verbs; more adverbs; expressing agreement with positive or negative statements; more phrasal verbs.

Level 7: "Intermediate"

Intermediate is B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference and an AIM Entry Level 3 qualification on the UK National Qualification Framework.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: reported speech; the third conditional; the past perfect; certain gerund expressions; to have something done; conjunctions and connectives; variation in word order; more phrasal verbs.

Level 8: "Advanced"

Advanced is B2 on the Common European Framework of Reference and an AIM Level 1 qualification on the UK National Qualification Framework.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: increased vocabulary; inversion; verbs followed by the past tense; hypothesis and deduction with modals; various uses of the infinitive; more phrasal verbs; collocation and idiom.

Level 9: "Proficiency"

Proficiency is C1 on the Common European Framework of Reference and an AIM Level 2 qualification on the UK National Qualification Framework. The student has a very good active vocabulary and structural understanding at this level, and can therefore undertake a course of study in English in further or higher education.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: evidence of a wide vocabulary; evidence of control of structures and organisation of language; collocation not just individual words; control of style and idiom; differentiation of variety and tone when necessary.

Level 10: "Masters"

Masters is C2 on the Common European Framework of Reference and an AIM Level 3 qualification on the UK National Qualification Framework. A C1 may also be awarded from this exam if a C2 is not achieved. The student can confidently manipulate the language at this level, and use it both for any study or professional purpose.

Over the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking (optional), new elements that this level tests are: evidence of a very wide vocabulary; evidence of excellent control of structures and organisation of language; full control of collocation; full control of style, idiom, inference; nuanced differentiation of variety and tone.

For further information on our General English exams, please view our complete Syllabus. Within this handbook, you will find a complete breakdown of the assessments, as well as the marking criteria, performance descriptors and vocabularly lists.

For further information on our General English exams, please view our complete Syllabus.

Within this handbook, you will find a complete breakdown of the assessments, as well as the marking criteria, performance descriptors and vocabularly lists.