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What Certificates Can Be Passed in order to Prove Spanish Levels?

From Jon, published on 20/02/2018 Blog > Tutoring > Advice for Tutors > What Tests Are Required for Different Spanish Proficiency Levels?
If you want to teach English as a foreign language in a Spanish-speaking country, taking Spanish lessons in order to learn the Spanish language, its alphabet, pronunciation, grammar, the conjugation of verbs from the beginner to bilingual level is essential.

Whether you are a junior and wanting to study for the Spanish SAT Subject Test or would like to go on to a Spanish university in a Spanish-speaking country  knowing both the language and cultural context, as well as Spanish literature is mandatory!

So, in order to validate your Spanish knowledge, why not pass the DELE exam?

Whatever your Spanish level, there’s just the diploma or Spanish test for you!

After reading this article, you will be unbeatable when it comes to the Spanish levels and tests you need to prepare for a successful Spanish degree!

Pass the A1 Level

You can choose to pass a diploma validating all the Spanish knowledge you have acquired over the years of studying the language.

DELE A1 is the first level that can be tested.

Passing a foreign language certification is a good way to access the Spanish-speaking world and gain confidence in yourself and your progress while improving on your language training.

This first level certifies that you are able to communicate with simple vocabulary words in the context of your immediate basic needs (drinking, eating, etc.) and within the themes of everyday life (your identity, your age, your hobbies, etc.)

The examination consists of several testing categories divided into two distinct groups:

  • Reading and writing skills:
    • Reading comprehension: 45 minutes, 4 categories
    • Written expressions and interactions: 25 minutes, 2 categories
  • Oral skills:
    • Listening comprehension: 20 minutes, 4 categories
    • Oral expressions and interactions: 15 minutes

In order to obtain an A1 level diploma, you have to obtain at least 30 points out of 50 in each category (reading and writing skills and oral skills). You are then declared “apt” to obtain your DELE A1.

Be careful to follow the instructions given in the written exercise, namely the number of words and text format.

Passing the A2 Level

You’re taking online courses and would like to know if you can validate the learning you’ve done in the Spanish language?

The A2 level is right for you if you can understand common phrases and everyday use expressions (information about you and your family members, about your purchases, your places of interest, your hobbies , etc.)

The DELE A2 is the same as the DELE A1, with the only difference being that the tests last longer:

  • Reading and writing skills:
    • Reading comprehension: 1 hour, 5 categories
    • Written interactions and expressions: 50 minutes, 2 categories
  • Oral skills:
    • Listening comprehension: 35 minutes, 5 categories
    • Oral interactions and expressions: 15 minutes

The minimum required here is also of 30 points out of 50 for each category in order for the learner to be recognized as “apt” in the language level.

Levels A1 and A2 are the “easiest” to obtain and will encourage you in your language efforts. Your Spanish teacher may want you to pass it to give you confidence and validate your progress.

Passing the B1 Level

Have you acquired good spelling and now know the rules of Spanish conjugation? You’d like to go sightseeing in Latin America and are hoping to gain confidence in your Spanish speaking skills? Time for the next level!

Level B1 certifies that you can:

  • Understand the main ideas of more simple and standard Spanish texts (not Latin American Spanish or the difficult Catalan) on common subjects.
  • Manage to get around in basic situations and during your travels (ask for your way to somewhere, order from a restaurant, etc.) in a hispanic country.
  • Write coherent texts on familiar topics or those that interest you and are close to your hobbies.
  • Describe experiences, events, wishes, and ambitions, while also justifying your opinions.

The composition of the categories is the following:

  • Reading and writing skills:
    • Reading comprehension: 1h10, 5 exercises
    • Written interaction and expression: 1 hour, 2 exercises
  • Oral skills:
    • Listening comprehension: 40 minutes, 5 exercises
    • Oral interaction and expression: 15 minutes + 15 minutes of preparation

The notation system is the same: one must obtain 30 points out of 50 in each category, minimum 60 points out of 100 in order to pass the diploma.

What is the CELU Spanish certification test? 

Passing the B2 Level

Spain-peseta A trip to Spain could ensure that your language skills evolve quickly and efficiently!

You’ve now enriched your Spanish vocabulary (adverb, verb, proverb, adjective, etc.)? Would you like to get certified in a higher level in Spanish, something which is appreciated by most employers?

The B2 level will also be asked of you if you want to work or do an internship in a Spanish-speaking country.

The level certifies that you are able to do the following:

  • Communicate with Spanish speakers without any effort and in a fluid manner in order to have natural conversations. 
  • Write clear and detailed texts on varied subjects and defend your point of view regarding general themes, indicating the pluses and minuses.
  • Understand the main ideas of complex, concrete, abstract, and technical texts if they are linked to your professional domain.

The test will be longer once again! You have to earn your B2 level.

  • Reading and writing skills:
    • Reading comprehension: 1h10, 4 exercices
    • Expression et interaction écrites : 1h20, 2 exercices
  • Oral skills:
    • Listening comprehension: 40 minutes, 5 exercises
    • Oral interaction and expressions: 20 minutes + 20 minutes of preparation

The final grade is “apt” or “inept.” To be declared apt, you will be asked the same thing: at least 30 points out of 50 in each of the categories which are assessed.

What is the BULATS Spanish proficiency test?

Passing the C1 Level

You’ve studied in a Spanish-speaking country, now know Spain and South America’s cultural environment and civilization. You want to show you have had a successful linguistic journey and have formal proof of being more advanced than before.

Your language skills are high enough for:

  • Understanding long texts that have a certain level of difficulty, as well as understanding their hidden meanings.
  • Express yourself with fluidity, spontaneity, and without any effort when finding the right expression.
  • Using language in an efficient manner in your social, academic, and professional environment.
  • Writing structured and detailed texts on complex subjects, correctly using organizational techniques, articulation, cohesion, as if it were your native tongue.

Like with the other levels, the DELE C1 has two tests with different durations and levels of difficulty:

  • Reading and writing skills:
    • Reading comprehension and language use: 1h30, 5 exercises
    • Listening comprehension and language use: 50 minutes, 5 exercises
  • Oral skills:
    • Listening comprehension, oral interaction and expression: 20 minutes and 20 minutes preparation
    • Reading comprehension, oral interaction and expression: 20 minutes and 20 minutes preparation

The minimum score is always the same: 30 points out of 50 for each category and therefore 60 points out of 100 on the entire exam.

Passing the C2 Level

coffee-black A coffee is a great way to get your Spanish lesson going.

Are you preparing an entry exam in order to become a teacher? It’s very probable that you are fluent in Spanish and its nuances, that you know how to cope in all linguistic situations in an efficient way and that you are able to express yourself spontaneously in all contexts.

Pass the C2 level! In this context, you will have to take three tests to validate your DELE C2:

  • Language use, reading comprehension and listening comprehension: 1h45, 6 exercises
  • Integrated skills: listening comprehension, reading comprehension, written expression and interaction (2h30, 3 exercises)
  • Complete skills: reading comprehension, oral interaction and expressions (20 minutes and 30 minutes of preparation).

The maximum grade that can be obtained at the exam is 100 points. One must obtain at least 60% on each testing category. You therefore need at least 20 points for each of the three testing categories.

Do you know the FPLE Spanish test with the University of Central Florida?

The Specifics on Junior A1 and A2/B1 Testing

Are you a Spanish teacher? You can suggest that your students take the Junior A1 and A2/B1 exams.

These exams are aimed at young people aged 11 to 17 who are studying Spanish. They are adapted to candidates of that age.

They consist of four testing categories: reading comprehension, listening comprehension, written expression and interaction, oral expression and interaction.

Junior DELEs are officially recognized internationally on behalf of the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, as are the classic DELEs.

junior-exam Regular work will make sure your middle and high school students get ahead with the DELE junior exam!

DELE A1 for Juniors

This first level provides basic language skills in order to understand and use simple everyday phrases that will meet a beginner Spanish speaker’s immediate needs.

This diploma helps to stimulate students with learning by validating their skills and encouraging them to learn more and improve their skills in the Spanish language.

The exam takes place with four testing categories:

  • Reading comprehension: 45 minutes
  • Auditory comprehension: 20 minutes
  • Written expression and interaction: 25 minutes
  • Oral expression and interaction: 10 minutes + 10 minutes preparation

You will find more information (guide and exam model) on the DELE website under the “Junior levels: A1 and A2 / B1” tab.

DELE A2/B1 for Juniors

Depending on the grade obtained on the exam, students may receive either of the following degrees: the A2 level or the B1 level.

The A2 level certifies that the student understands sentences and frequent expressions of everyday life with familiar subject matters.

Level B1 certifies that the student uses the Spanish language to:

  • understand the main ideas of texts written in the standard language on topics he or she knows.
  • use on a touristic trip to a Spanish speaking country.
  • write simple and coherent texts on familiar subjects.
  • describe experiences, events, wishes, and desires, and briefly justify his or her opinions.

The DELE is an official certificate that allows in a single test to define which level a student belongs to. This diploma has a permanent validity. The student does not have to take it again once he is past 17.

The exam consists of 4 parts:

  • Reading comprehension: 50 minutes
  • Listening comprehension: 30 minutes
  • Written expression and interaction: 50 minutes
  • Oral expression and interaction: 12 minutes + 12 minutes of preparation

To sum things up:

  • The DELE, both the general and junior version, is an official diploma awarded by Spain and other Latin-American countries.
  • To obtain recognition for the richness of your Spanish usage and so that you can write good letters in Spanish, for example, pass your DELE exam.
  • The levels correspond to the competences you have already acquired: A1 for breakthrough, A2 for waystage, B1 for threshold, B2 for vantage, C1 for effective operational proficiency, C2 for the mastery of the language.
  • The B2 level is required if you would like to work or be an intern in a Spanish-speaking country.
  • Even young people from 11 to 17 years old can pass the DELE exam with testing categories that are adapted to their skills!
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