The Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR)

  • CEFR: international standard for language ability;
  • Six levels: A1 (basic) – C2 (expert);
  • Key language skills: reading, writing, speaking, listening.

The CEFR is the standard used around the world to benchmark language ability. It is a series of descriptions of abilities, which can be applied to any language.

It makes it easier for anyone involved in language teaching and testing (such as teachers, learners, and parents) to see the levels of different qualifications, and it means that employers and educational institutions can easily compare Cambridge English Qualifications to other exams in their country.

It has a six-point scale, from A1 for beginners, up to C2 for those who have mastered a language. The CEFR describes the things that a language learner Can Do at each of these six levels.

We have been involved in the research and development of the CEFR since the 1970s. Our B2 First and C2 Proficiency qualifications informed the original development of the CEFR, and we have been continuously involved in its development and implementation.

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