Common European Framework Reference (CEFR)

Proficiency Levels Explained

You are at this level when you have… 

 

A0 – Entry level

  • No prior knowledge of the language to be studied

 

You are at this level when you can …

A1 – Beginner (Breakthrough)

  • Understand and use familiar expressions and very basic phrases aimed at meeting your everyday needs
  • Introduce yourself to others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where you live, people you know and things you have
  • Interact in a simple way if the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help

 

A2 – Elementary (Waystage)

  • Understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to areas of most immediate relevance (for example, very basic personal and family information, shopping, local geography, employment)
  • Communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters
  • Describe, in simple terms, aspect of your background, immediate environment and matters in areas of immediate need

 

B1 – Intermediate (Threshold)

  • Understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc.
  • Deal with most situations likely to arise while travelling in an area where the language is spoken
  • Produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest
  • Describe experiences, events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans

 

B2 – Upper intermediate (Vintage)

  • Understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in your field of specialisation
  • Interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party
  • Produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options

 

C1 – Advanced (Effective operational proficiency)

  • Understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning
  • Express yourself fluently ands spontaneously without much obvious searching for expressions
  • Use language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes
  • Produce clear, well-structured, detailed text on complex subjects, showing controlled use of organisational patters, connectors and cohesive devices

 

C2 – Proficiency (Mastery)

  • Understand with ease virtually everything heard or read
  • Summarise information from different spoken and written sources, reconstructing arguments and accounts in a coherent fashion
  • Express yourself spontaneously, very fluently and precisely, differentiating finder shades of meaning, even in the most complex situations