IELTS: International English Language Testing System
IELTS: IELTS or the International English Language Testing System is an English language exam and is internationally accredited. This test is a measurement for evaluating English language proficiency of people who wish to study, work or immigrate to English-speaking countries. The IELTS exam is being held in collaboration with the University of Cambridge, the British Council and the IDP Australia. It meets the highest and most reliable international standards for English language proficiency and evaluates four abilities of Writing, Reading, Listening and Speaking.
The score ranges from 2 to 9, means there is no pass or fail, but generally speaking score 5 is considered as average and 6 and above it is considered as good. Cambridge, Oxford, and Harvard University accept at least IELTS 7.
IELTS exam consists of 4 parts: listening, reading, writing and speaking. There are two types of IELTS- Academic and General Training. IELTS Academic is more difficult than the general one and this is the test that is required to enter universities.
TOEFL: Test of English as a Foreign Language, a test that measures the extent to which individuals are able to communicate in English at universities and educational institutions.
PBT paper test
As the name of this test is clear, candidates are required to answer the questions in the test booklet. This test has been replaced by Ibt (the internet test) and in fact will be completely abolished in near future. The paper exam tests three language skills:
• Listening Comprehension
• Structure and Language
• Reading Comprehension
In addition to the above three skills, there is a writing skill section that the candidates should be able to write on a specific topic within 30 minute. The scores obtained from each section are summed up after scaling and determined the total score of the candidates. This score can vary from 310 to 677.
Ibt internet test
This test was introduced late 2005 and significantly replaced the other two types of “computer-based” and “booklet-based”. The test was initially held in the US, Canada, France, Germany and Italy, and has gradually progressed to other countries since 2006. The “computer-based” test, or CBT, was stopped in September 2006.
In this type of test, participants must attend the test site on specified dates and take the test online. The validity of this test is the same as the old TOEFL exams, but this test has some differences, including:
• Unlike the older TOEFL which more emphasis on grammar, this test covers all language skills.
• The time interval between taking the test and getting a test results online is about two weeks.
• The test is held several times a month and candidates have more freedom to choose the test date.
It is a 4-hour test with 4 sections. Each section may test one or even several skills. In this type of test, unlike the manual-based method, note taking is allowed. This test cannot be held more than once a week. It should be noted, however, that one or more sections may be presented longer (longer than usual). For this reason, it is unclear which part of the questions is actually corrected and included in the score. The questions are chosen randomly.
1. Reading Comprehension
This section contains 3 to 5 long texts and questions about these texts. Topics are academic and usually found in academic books. The questions are mainly about main subject of the text, details, inferences, sentence simplification, replacement of the sentences, synonyms. In ibt exam, the candidates must have skills such as summary writing, quick inference of main ideas, and tabulation. Generally, there is no need for background information but prior information can be helpful.
۲. Listening Comprehension
This section contains six texts; two of them are students’ conversations and four texts simulating academic classroom and discussions.
۳. Speaking Comprehension
This section comprises six sections; two independent sections, each with a question about academic life and the students must talk about them. Other four sections are integrated with reading and listening. In these sections, the candidates should talk about the text summary he/she is reading or hearing, or express his/her new ideas about these texts. These conversations should be precise, clear and have a detailed analysis of the information provided.
۴. Writing Comprehension
This section consists of two parts; an integrated part and an independent part. In the integrated section, the candidates should read the academic text, then listen to the rest of it, and after that write his/her interpretations about text. In the independent section, the candidates also write an essay on given question.
Each skill score between 0 to 30, and the total score is among 0 to 120. The score 79 or 80 is equivalent to the score of 550 of paper exams which is required for accepting at postgraduate degrees at most universities.
DELE: The Spanish DELE exam (Diplomas de Espanol Como lengua extranjera) belongs to those whom Spanish is not their native language and is their second language. DELE diplomas certify degree of competence and mastery of the Spanish language provided by Cervantes Institute which is granted by Spain’s Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.
The Spanish DELE exam is divided into 6 levels and these levels are approved by the European Union Reference (CEFR). The DELE diploma is not only approved by schools but is also valid for those who want to improve their career (valid in occupation and Business). The various levels of this Spanish exam are:
DELE Level A1:
The DELE A1 is the first level of the Spanish exam and is a good proof for those who have started their Spanish. In addition to giving you confidence to continue learning Spanish, it gives you the ability to use basic language in essential situations. Level A1 consists of 2 stages and to qualify for the DELE A1 you need to score in both stages, with a maximum total score of 100 and a minimum score of 30.
• First stage: The comprehension and writing section is 45 and 30 minutes, respectively. Make sure the writing section matches the format required in the exam.
• Second stage: listening (20 minutes) and speaking (15 minutes).
DELE Level A2
DELE A2 is perfect for language learners who can simply and basically speak about their desires, interests, family, etc. and use simple terms and phrases. This level of DELE also has two stages.
• First stage: 60 minutes comprehension and 50 minutes writing
• Second stage: 35 minutes listening and 15 minutes speaking
DELE Level B1
Among the skills you need to take the Spanish DELE B1 exam include:
• Comprehending different texts on different topics
• Facing challenges that may arise when using Spanish while traveling to Spanish-speaking countries
• Writing simple texts on various topics
This exam also has two stages and to pass it you need to score 60 out of 100, i.e. at least 30 out of 50 in each step.
• First stage of the DELE B1 Spanish exam consists of 70 minutes comprehension and 40 minutes listening
• Second stage: 60 minutes writing and 30 minutes listening.
DELE level B2
This Spanish exam is suitable for those who have the following skills and are actually at advanced level.
• Comprehending different and complex texts on different topics
• Speaking and communicating with natives and having fluency while speaking
• Producing and writing various texts and defending your opinion and point of view
The Spanish DELE B2 exam also has two stages. The first stage is 60 minutes comprehension and 40 minutes listening. The second stage is the 80 minutes writing and the 60 minute speaking.
DELE Level C1
This exam has undergone changes since November 2011 and the success in this Spanish exam demonstrates the highest level of language ability in Spanish as a second language. Understanding every single word in a demanding text, fluently speaking like a mother tongue are among the key elements of being successful in this level. The 2-stage DELE C1 test level is slightly different. Since 2013, for passing DELE C1 exam, you must get at least 30 points in each stage. And the highest score in each stage is 100 points.
• First stage: 90 minutes reading and 80 minutes mix of listening and comprehension
• Second stage: 50 minutes listening and 20 minutes mix of comprehension and speaking (20 minutes for exam preparation)
DELE level C2
The latest and most advanced level of the DELE exam is the DELE C2 which contains 3 exams:
• First exam: Use of language, writing and listening (105 minutes)
• Second exam: A mix of comprehension, listening and writing (150 minutes)
• Third exam: 20 minutes comprehension and speaking (30 minutes ready)