The "Certificate in Advanced English" (CAE) is an advanced level exam taken by 50.00 people in more than 60 countries every year. CAE is the fourth level of the Cambridge Main Suite examinations.

CAE recognises the ability to communicate with confidence in English and deal with most aspects of everyday life.

As with all Cambridge examinations, CAE covers the main language skills: reading, writing, listening and speaking, as well as grammar and vocabulary. CAE also recognizes the student's ability to communicate in English in real situations.

Universities and companies worldwide accept CAE as proof that the candidate has a good English level to deal with a scope of both, social and professional situations.

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The CAE exam has 5 papers: Reading, Writing, Use of English, Listening and Speaking.

- Reading (Paper 1) 1 hour 15 minutes
The Reading paper assesses candidates' ability to read and understand a number of texts taken from books, newspapers and magazines. Candidates are expected to be able to show understanding of gist, main points, detail, text structure or specific information, deduce meaning or recognise opinion and attitude.

- Writing (Paper 2) 2 hours
The Writing paper assesses candidates' ability to write non-specialised text types such as letters, articles, reports and reviews for a given purpose and target reader, covering a range of topics. Responses are of about 250 words in length.

- Use of English (Paper 3) 1 hour 30 minutes
In the Use of English candidates are expected to demonstrate knowledge and control of the language system by completing various tasks at text and sentence level, based on authentic texts. This will include gap-filling, error correction, word formation, Register transfer and text completion exercises.

- Listening (Paper 4) (approx 45 minutes)
The Listening paper assesses candidates' ability to understand the meaning of spoken English and to extract detailed and specific information from the spoken text and to understand speakers' attitudes and opinions. The texts are taken from a variety of text types including interviews, discussions, lectures and conversations.

- Speaking (Paper 5) (Approx. 15 minutes)
The Speaking Test assesses candidates' ability to interact in conversational English in a range of contexts. It contains four parts, including an interview section, individual long turns, a collaborative task and a discussion. Candidates are provided with stimulus materials such as photographs and drawings. Candidates normally take the Speaking Test in pairs.


Exam dates are in June and December each year.

CAE may only be taken at Cambridge official testing centers. There are more than 2,400 authorized centers in more than 130 countries.

In order to enroll for the test, candidates must contact the authorized test center at least 10 weeks in advance. It is no possible to register through UCLES.


Once the examination finished, all exams scripts are sent back to Cambridge for marking. The examiners are specialists in the teaching of the English language with years of relevant experience in the proper level. While marking the tests, the examiners, who have previously been trained, are guided and supervised by examiners of greater seniority who are highly experienced.
There are five possible grades for CAE:

• A, B, C (Passing grade)
• D, E (failed)

Five or six weeks after the test, all candidates get an Exam Report that reflects their total results and a chart showing the performance of the candidates in each of the tests.

The Certificates for candidates who pass the test successfully will be available approximately 10 weeks after the test.


Cambridge EFL tests (English as a Foreign language) enjoy great respect and recognition at international level and enormous effort goes into ensuring both its validity as its reliability. Each KET test takes approximately three years to produce. Before any task or questions are included in an actual examination, they are trialled on students at a suitable level in a process that is called "pretesting". This guarantees that the level of difficulty of all the examination material is the right one and it's not biased towards people from particular cultural or educational ethnic backgrounds at the expense of others. Only when all the material has been checked and UCLES is certain that it meets the correct standard is it used in actual question papers.

UCLES works with thousands of highly trained examiners to write and mark the examination papers, and carry out speaking tests. The examiners work in teams, led by very experienced examiners, who co-ordinate the work to ensure that standards remain consistent.

Before a school or other institution can become an approved Cambridge EFL center it has to meet rigorous selection criteria. Centers operate according to clearly defined regulations by UCLES that carries out regular center inspections to ensure that standards are maintained.


The University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES) was founded in 1858, and today it is a world leader in the provision of educational assessment services.

UCLES began to organize English tests as a foreign language in 1913 and nowadays offers a wide range of tests and services that include specialized tests in business English, English for Academic Purposes, English for Children as well as diplomas and certificates for teachers of the English language.

Each year, more than 700,000 people take the English Cambridge Exams.


The members of the "Association of Language Testers in Europe" (ALTE) have worked together to develop a five-level scale that can be used as a guide for the development and description of language examinations across Europe. All Cambridge EFL examinations are now developed and revised using this scale as a guide, whether they are general English examinations or specialized English examinations, such as the Business English Certificates. This means that Cambridge certificate holders can compare their level of English with the other Cambridge EFL examinations and also with many other European language examinations.

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