EFL exams that are popular in Poland
Reflective Diary submitted by Karolina, Madrid.
In this essay I am going to describe which EFL exams I have noticed to be the most popular among students in Poland, where I am also a student and english teacher. I have had the opportunity to help other students with their English, specifically EFL exams. These exams are English language tests designed to check a non- native speaker’s proficiency in the English language, the results of which can give a non-native speakers the confidence to communicate with people from all around the world and prove their English language skills to employers, universities and other institutions. As a Polish student, I can say that there is a huge variety of possible options for everyone, but several EFL exams are particularly popular amongst the student environment.
Exams which have a wide appeal among Polish students are 3 ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages ) exams, like:
- CPE (Certificate of Proficiency in English),
- CAE (Certificate of Advanced English) and
- FCE (First Certificate in English).
I think the ESOL exams are the most recognisable language exams in the world as, to take the ESOL exam, the students’ English language level must meet high standards. It is obvious that you can pass the exam to a minimum score, but this is not satisfactory, as the old Polish proverb says: “Measure high, and even if you do not reach the moon you will find yourself among the stars”. The exam structure is comparatively straightforward and there should be no problems with understanding the content of the exam questions, provided you have the knowledge on the appropriate level exam. Exams consist of 4 parts: reading and use of English, speaking, listening and writing.
The main trick with these exams is finding the balance between the student feeling comfortable and pushing their limits. It can admittedly be difficult to find a students’ adequate language level, but, once we have completed the level testing and found it, they then must work hard to achieve the intended goal of passing with best possible mark for them. In fact, most of my pupils who have taken the ESOL exams have passed without any problems.
Furthermore, the main advantage of certificates is that they do not expire and are indefinite, providing a number of benefits to their holders. In my experience, ESOL certifications are honoured by numerous universities in Poland and abroad, and are also recognised by most large recruiting companies for positions requiring English proficiency.
- Pitt, Kathy. Debates in ESOL Teaching and Learning: Culture, Communities and Classrooms. New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, 2005