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The ALTE levels

ALTE – The Association of Language Testers in Europe – is an association of institutions within Europe, each of which produces examinations and certification for language learners.


The ALTE exams are placed at one of 6 levels (Breakthrough, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). The levels are described by a series of Can-do statements, which:

• define levels of ability in terms of what language users can typically do at each level of the ALTE Framework

• make it easier for users to understand what each level means in relation to what language users actually do.

Here is a short description of various general and work-related abilities at the different levels:

Level 1 (=A2)

- CAN express simple opinions or requirements in a familiar context.
- CAN understand straightforward information within a known area, such as on products and signs and simple textbooks or reports on familiar matters.
- CAN complete forms and write short simple letters or postcards related to personal information.
- CAN state simple requirements within own job area, such as 'I want to order 25 of...'.
- CAN understand most short reports or manuals of a predictable nature within his/her own area of expertise, provided enough time is given.
- CAN write a short, comprehensive note of request to a colleague or a known contact in another company.

Level 2 (=B1)

- CAN express opinions on abstract/cultural matters in a limited way or offer advice within a known area, and understand instructions or public announcements.
- CAN understand routine information and articles, and the general meaning of non-routine information within a familiar area.
- CAN write letters or make notes on familiar or predictable matters.
- CAN offer advice to clients within own job area on simple matters.
- CAN understand the general meaning of non-routine letters and theoretical articles within own work area.
- CAN make reasonably accurate notes at a meeting or seminar where the subject matter is familiar and predictable.

Level 3 (=B2), Cambridge First Certificate

- CAN follow or give a talk on a familiar topic or keep up a conversation on a fairly wide range of topics.
- CAN scan texts for relevant information, and understand detailed instructions or advice.
- CAN make notes while someone is talking or write a letter including non-standard requests.
- CAN take and pass on most messages that are likely to require attention during a normal working day.
- CAN understand most correspondence, reports and factual product literature he/she is likely to come across.
- CAN deal with all routine requests for goods or services.

Level 4 (=C1), Cambridge Advanced

- CAN contribute effectively to meetings and seminars within own area of work or keep up a casual conversation with a good degree of fluency, coping with abstract expressions.
- CAN read quickly enough to cope with an academic course, to read the media for information or to understand non-standard correspondence.
- CAN prepare/draft professional correspondence, take reasonably accurate notes in meetings or write an essay which shows an ability to communicate.
- CAN contribute effectively to meetings and seminars within own area of work and argue for or against a case.
- CAN understand correspondence expressed in non-standard language.
- CAN handle a wide range of routine and non-routine situations in which professional services are requested from colleague or external contacts.

Level 5 (=C2), Cambridge Proficiency

- CAN advise on or talk about complex or sensitive issues, understanding colloquial references and dealing confidently with hostile questions.
- CAN understand documents, correspondence and reports, including the finer points of complex texts.
- CAN write letters on any subject and full notes of meetings or seminars with good expression and accuracy.
- CAN advise on/handle complex delicate or contentious issues, such as legal or financial matters, to the extent that he/she has the necessary specialist knowledge.
- CAN understand reports and articles likely to be encountered during his/her work, including complex ideas expressed in complex language.
- CAN make full and accurate notes and continue to participate in a meeting or seminar.

For more information you can visit the ALTE website.


class 1


class 2

Fichet Bauche
Quaker Chemical
Printer Industria Gráfica
Lexmark España
Ayuntamiento de Barcelona
Pepe Jeans
and many more...

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