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English

English

LEVEL A1 (BREAKTHROUGH)

LEVEL A1 (BREAKTHROUGH)

General competences

At the end of the Breakthrough level learners will achieve the following competences:

Linguistic competences

Regarding the lexical and semantic competences, the learner at this level uses a very basic range of simple expressions about personal details and needs of a concrete type. He/she has a basic vocabulary inventory of isolated words, phrases and fixed expressions related to particular concrete situations.

In relation to grammatical accuracy, he/she shows only limited control of a few simple grammatical structures and sentence patterns in a learnt repertoire.

As for phonological and orthographic control, he/she is able to pronounce a very limited repertoire of learnt words and phrases. He/she can be understood with some effort by native speakers who are used to talking to speakers of his/her language group. He/she can copy familiar words and short phrases and set phrases used regularly. He/she can spell his/her address, nationality and other personal details.

Sociolinguistic competence

Learners at this stage have a quite reduced sociolinguistic competence. They are only able to establish basic social contact by using the simplest everyday polite forms of: greetings and farewells; introductions; saying please, thank you, sorry, etc.

Pragmatic competence

At this level the learner’s pragmatic competence is very limited. He/she has little flexibility and mastery of turn taking and he/she uses only very basic linear connectors such as “and” or “then”.

Functional competence

These competences are also quite limited at this level. The learner shows neither much spoken fluency nor propositional precision. He/she can utter very short, isolated, mainly pre-packaged utterances, with much pausing to search for expressions, to articulate less familiar words, and to repair communication.

Specific competences

Oral comprehension

An A1 learner can follow a slow and carefully articulated speech, with long pauses for him/her to assimilate meaning. He/she has serious difficulties in understanding conversations between native speakers or recordings. He/she can understand instructions and questions addressed carefully and slowly to him/her and follow short, simple directions.

Oral production

At this level the speaker can only produce simple mainly isolated phrases about people and places. He/she can describe him/herself, what he/she does and where he/she lives. He/she can read very short, rehearsed speeches.

Spoken interaction

At this stage, the learner can interact in a simple way but communication is totally dependent on repetition. The rate of speech is slower, and re-phrasing and repair is very common. He/she can ask and answer simple questions, initiate and respond to simple statements in areas of immediate need or on very familiar topics. He/she can ask people for things and can handle numbers, quantities, cost and time.

Reading comprehension

He/she can understand short, simple messages on postcards and very simple texts with easy vocabulary and about everyday topics. He/she usually has to re-read in order to understand. He/she can get an idea of the content of simpler informative texts and short simple descriptions, especially if there is visual support. He/she can follow short, simple written directions.

Written production

He/she can write simple isolated phrases and sentences about him/herself and other people, or about where he/she lives and what he/she does.

Grammatical, functional and vocabulary contents

Grammatical contents

  • The verbs to be and to have
  • The verb to want
  • Present Continuous
  • Present Simple
  • Articles
  • Personal Pronouns
  • Adjectives: word order
  • Possessives
  • Question words: who, what, where, where, which, whose
  • Countable/uncountable nouns
  • Use of auxiliary verbs in negation: do not, have not
  • Common habitual verbs
  • Verbs of ability: can/can't
  • Asking for directions
  • There is/There are
  • How much?/How many?
  • Would you like?
  • Some/any
  • Basic spatial and temporal prepositions
  • Basic conjunctions: and, but, because, when
  • Adverbs of frequency: always, sometimes, usually, never
  • Ordinal numbers: important dates
  • Time

Functional contents

  • Telling the time in relationship to habitual behaviour and daily routines: I get up at 7. I get dressed. I go to school/work at 8. I leave home at half past eight. I have breakfast/lunch/dinner at 2. I start work at 9.
  • Describing habits and routines with parts of the day, days of the week, months and seasons: I work in the morning. In winter I always go skiing. I have English on Mondays. At night I usually watch TV.
  • Basic spelling: common words, names, addresses.
  • Greetings and introductions: My name is… This is… I come from… I work in/at/for…
  • Talking about family
  • Talking about work
  • Describing people: What does he/she look like? He/she is...
  • Describing places/objects: What does the logo/product look like? It is... and made of…
  • Things in the classroom, at work and at home: There is/are - desk, chair, pen, pencil, rubber, pencil case, ruler, whiteboard
  • Meeting new people: Where are you from? What do you do? Have you got any brothers/ sisters? Where do you work? Who do you work for?
  • Asking for and giving directions: Where is the …? It is next to, in front of, between, near, behind... The photocopier is between the fax machine and the filing cabinet.
  • Shopping: I’d like a …, please. How much is/are...? What size...?
  • Talking about likes and dislikes: I like apples but I don’t like bananas.
  • Requests with want/would like: I’d like an apple, please. I want an apple please.
  • Talking about weather: It is hot/cold/cloudy/sunny/foggy/windy.
  • Dates: The conference is on the 22nd of June. My birthday is on the 21st ofJanuary. Christmas Day is on the 25th of December.
  • Expressing ability: I can ride a bike but I can’t drive because…

Vocabulary content

  • Common verbs
  • Weather
  • House and home
  • Work
  • Occupations, jobs
  • Numbers
  • Adjectives
  • Months, days
  • Languages, countries and nationalities

LEVEL A2 (WAYSTAGE)

LEVEL A2 (WAYSTAGE)

General competences

At the end of the Waystage level students will achieve the following competences:

Linguistic competence

The learner at this level has sufficient vocabulary to conduct routine, everyday transactions involving familiar situations and topics and for the expression of basic communicative needs. He/she can cope with simple survival needs.

Regarding grammatical accuracy, the speaker uses correctly some simple structures, but still makes basic mistakes systematically.

In relation to phonological and orthographic control, pronunciation is generally clear enough to be understood despite a noticeable foreign accent, but other speakers may ask them for repetition from time to time. He/she can write some short and easy words possibly with some spelling mistakes.

Sociolinguistic competence

The speaker at this stage has the competence to perform and respond to basic language functions, such as information exchange and requests; he/she can also express opinions and attitudes in a simple way. He/she can socialize simply but effectively using the simplest common expressions and following basic routines. He/she can handle very short social exchanges, using everyday polite forms of greeting and address and can make and respond to invitations, suggestions or apologies.

Pragmatic competence

Regarding flexibility, he/she can adapt well-rehearsed memorized simple phrases to particular circumstances through limited lexical substitution and can expand learned phrases through simple recombination of their elements.

As for turn taking, he/she can use simple techniques to start, maintain or end a short conversation and can ask for attention.

With regard to thematic development, he/she can tell a story or describe something in a simple list of points.

Finally considering coherence and cohesion, he/she can use the most frequently occurring connectors such as “and”, “but”, and “because” to link simple sentences in order to tell a story or describe something as a simple list of points.

Functional competence

Spoken fluency: he/she can make him/herself understood in short contributions, even though pauses, false starts and reformulation are very evident; he/she can construct phrases on familiar topics with sufficient ease to handle short exchanges, despite very noticeable hesitation and false starts.

Propositional precision: he/she can communicate what he/she wants to say in a simple and direct exchange of limited information on familiar and routine matters.

Specific competences

Oral comprehension

He/she can understand phrases and expressions related to areas of most immediate priority provided speech is clearly and slowly articulated. He/she can generally identify the topic of discussion around him/her, when it is conducted slowly and clearly. He/she can catch the main point in short, clear, simple messages and announcements and can understand simple directions relating to how to get from X to Y.

He/she can understand and extract the essential information from short, recorded passages dealing with predictable everyday matters delivered slowly and clearly. He/she can generally understand clear, standard speech on familiar matters directed at him/her, provided he/she can ask for repetition or reformulation from time to time.

Oral production

He/she can give a simple description or presentation of people, living or working conditions, daily routines, likes/dislikes, etc. as a short series of simple phrases and sentences linked into a list. Can describe things, places and people using a simple language. He/she can answer straightforward questions if he/she can ask for repetition and if some help with the formulation of his/her reply is possible.

Spoken interaction

He/she can communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters to do with work and free time. He/she can handle very short social exchanges but is rarely able to understand enough to keep conversation going of his/her own accord.

He/she can use simple everyday polite forms of greeting and address, and make and respond to invitations, suggestions and apologies. He/she can say what he/she likes/dislikes and can agree or disagree with others. He/she can order a meal.

He/she can discuss everyday practical issues in a simple way when addressed clearly, slowly and directly. He/she can discuss what to do, where to go and make arrangements to meet. He/she can exchange relevant information and give his/her opinion on practical problems when asked directly, provided he/she receives some help with formulation and can ask for repetition of key points if necessary.

Reading comprehension

The speaker at this level can understand short, simple texts containing the highest frequency vocabulary. He/she can look for particular information in texts. He/she can understand everyday signs and notices. He/she can understand simple instructions on equipment encountered in everyday life.

Written production

He/she can write a series of simple phrases and sentences linked with simple connectors like ‘and’, ‘but’ and ‘because’ about his/her family, living conditions, educational background, present or most recent job.

Grammatical, functional and vocabulary contents

Grammatical contents

  • Making suggestions: Shall we...?/Let's...
  • Modal verbs expressing ability, possibility, predictions and obligation
  • Describing objects and positions
  • Distances and times.
  • Zero Conditional
  • First Conditional
  • Irregular plurals of nouns: mouse-mice
  • Comparatives and superlatives
  • Past Simple
  • Past Continuous
  • Ago
  • The future tense: will, Present Continuous, going to
  • Be able to, will be able to
  • Basic phrasal verbs
  • Too and enough
  • How often do you …? Once, twice etc
  • How many times have you…? Once, twice etc
  • As well/too/also/either
  • Prepositions of place, time and dependant
  • The Passive Voice: Present Simple, Present Continuous and Past Simple
  • Present Perfect: for/since/yet/already/just, negative for/since

Functional contents

  • Making suggestions: Shall we go to…? Let's go to…
  • Offering help: Shall I…? Would you like…?
  • Making meeting arrangements: Shall we meet on Tuesday at 10am?
  • Asking for permission: Can I…?
  • Making comparisons: Spain is hotter than England. England isn't as hot as Spain. Inflation in Spain is higher than Germany. The German economy is expected to grow faster than the French.
  • Talking about health issues: I've got a headache/stomach ache/toothache/backache/a temperature.
  • Expressing ability: I can… I can't…, I'm able to…
  • Expressing future ability: I’ll be able to…
  • Expression obligation: I must… I mustn't… I have to… I don't have to…
  • Talking about future plans: I'm going to..., I'm meeting…, I'll visit…, I'll definitely go…, I might meet…, Perhaps I'll eat…, I'll probably see…
  • Talking about past events: I went to… I visited… months ago.
  • Agreeing and disagreeing: Yes, I think so. No, I don’t think so. I think you're right. I thing you're wrong because… That’s a good idea. I hope so/not. I like dancing as well.
  • Talking about frequency of events/routines: How often do you come to inlingua? How often do you have team meetings? Once/twice a/per week
  • Discussing things which have been done: How many times have you…? Once, twice
  • Talking about opinions: It’s too hot. It isn’t hot enough. The meeting room isn't big enough for 20 people.
  • Describing objects: How long/wide/heavy/high/fast is…? What is the length/width/weight/height/speed of… There is a... in the top/bottom hand corner, in the middle, at the top/bottom.
  • Talking about unfinished actions: I have already been to..., I haven't been to… yet. I've studied for/since…, I haven’t studied for 2 years.
  • Talking about distances/times: What time does the flight leave? How long does it take…? How far is it...?
  • Using public transport: Could I book a seat on the train to London on Monday?

Vocabulary content

Review and extension

  • Adjectives
  • Common verbs
  • Weather
  • House and home
  • Work
  • Occupations, jobs
  • Numbers
  • Adjectives
  • Free time activities
  • Transport

LEVEL B1 (THRESHOLD)

LEVEL B1 (THRESHOLD)

General competences

At the end of the Threshold level students will achieve the following competences:

Linguistic competence

The learner has sufficient vocabulary to express him/herself with some circumlocutions on most topics related to his/her everyday life such as family, hobbies and interests, work, travel, and current events. He/she shows good control of elementary vocabulary but major errors still occur when expressing more complex thoughts.

Regarding grammatical accuracy, he/she uses a repertoire of frequently used “routines” and patterns associated with more predictable situations reasonably accurately.

Phonological and orthographic control: Pronunciation is clearly intelligible even if a foreign accent is sometimes evident and occasional mispronunciations occur. He/she can produce continuous writing, which is generally intelligible throughout. Spelling, punctuation and layout are accurate enough to be followed most of the time.

Sociolinguistic competence

He/she can perform and respond to a wide range of language functions, using a neutral register. He/she is aware of the salient politeness conventions and acts appropriately.

Pragmatic competence

Regarding flexibility, he/she can adapt his/her expression to deal with less routine, even difficult, situations. He/she can use a wide range of simple language flexibly to express much of what he/she wants.

He/she can participate in a discussion on a familiar topic, using a suitable phrase to get the floor. He/she can initiate, maintain and close simple face-to-face conversations on topics that are familiar or of personal interest.

He/she can reasonably fluently relate a straightforward narrative or description as a linear sequence of points.

He/She uses coherence devices to link a series of shorter, discrete simple elements into a connected, linear sequence of points.

Functional competence

Spoken fluency: He/she can express him/herself with relative ease. Despite some problems with formulation resulting in pauses and “cul-de-sacs”, he/she is able to keep going effectively without help.

Propositional precision: He/she can explain the main points of an idea or problem with reasonable precision. He/she can express the main point he/she wants to make comprehensibly.

Specific competences

Oral comprehension

At this stage the learner can understand straightforward factual information about common everyday or job related topics, identifying both general messages and specific details, provided speech is clearly articulated in a generally familiar accent.

He/she can generally follow the main points of extended discussion and short talks around him/her, provided speech is clearly articulated and in a standard dialect. He/she can understand simple technical information, such as operating instructions for everyday equipment. He/she can follow detailed directions.

He/she can understand the main points of radio news bulletins and simpler recorded material about familiar subjects delivered relatively slowly and clearly. He/she can catch the main points in TV programmes on familiar topics when the delivery is relatively slow and clear.

Oral production

Regarding oral production, he/she can reasonably fluently sustain a straightforward description of one of a variety of subjects within his/her field of interest, presenting it as a linear sequence of points. He/she can relate the plot of a book or film and describe his/her reactions. He/she can describe dreams, hopes and ambitions and narrate a story.

He/she can describe everyday aspects of his/her environment. He/she can briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions, plans and actions.

He/she can give a prepared straightforward presentation on a familiar topic within his/her field, which is clear enough to be followed without difficulty most of the time. He/she can answer follow-up questions but may have to ask for repetition on occasion.

Spoken interaction

The learner can exploit a wide range of simple language to deal with most situations likely to arise when travelling. He/she can enter unprepared into conversation on familiar topics, express personal opinions and exchange information on topics that are familiar or of personal interest.

He/she can interact with reasonable ease in structured situations and short conversations, provided the other person helps if necessary. He/she can maintain a conversation or discussion but it may sometimes be difficult to follow him/her when he/she tries to express exactly what he/she would like to.

He/she can express and respond to feelings such as surprise, happiness, sadness, interest and indifference. He/she can participate in short conversations in routine contexts on topics of interest. He/she can generally follow the main points in an informal discussion with friends provided speech is clearly articulated and in a standard dialect.

He/she can make his/her opinions and reactions understood and express belief, opinion, agreement and disagreement politely.

He/she can deal with common aspects of everyday living such as travel, lodging, eating and shopping. He/she can deal with most situations likely to arise when making travel arrangements through an agent or when actually travelling.

Reading comprehension

He/she can read straightforward factual texts on subjects related to his/her field and interest with a satisfactory level of comprehension. He/she can find and understand relevant information in everyday material such as letters, brochures and short official documents. He/she can identify the main conclusions in clearly signalled argumentative texts. He/she can understand regulations, for example safety, when expressed in simple language.

Written production

He/she can write straightforward connected texts on a range of familiar subjects within his/her field of interest by linking a series of shorter discrete elements into a linear sequence. He/she can write accounts of experiences, describing feelings and reactions in simple connected text and narrate a story.

He/she can write about everyday aspects of his/her environment, e.g. people, places, a job or study experience in linked sentences. He/she can summarise, report and give his/her opinion about some factual information on familiar routine and non-routine matters within his/her field with some confidence.

Grammatical, functional and vocabulary contents

Grammatical contents

  • Reflexive pronouns: myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves, oneself
  • Reciprocal pronouns: each other
  • Short responses
  • Linkers: as, since, however, although, in order to, so that, for + -ing, therefore
  • Before/After +ing
  • Should, ought to
  • Regular form of the past participle (-ed)
  • Irregular forms of verbs in the Past Simple tense and as a past participle
  • Present Perfect Simple with still, just, so far, before, never, ever, during, lately, recently
  • Past Simple with last
  • Superlative + Present Perfect Simple
  • Adverbs of manner
  • Comparative with nouns
  • Comparative adverbs
  • Adjectival phrases: Adverb + past participle
  • Present Perfect Continuous
  • Past Perfect with until, as soon as, when
  • The Passive Voice in Present Continuous, Past Continuous, Present Perfect, Past Perfect, Future Simple
  • The Passive Voice with must, can, should, may, should
  • It is said/thought that
  • Used to vs. Past Simple
  • Past Simple vs. Present Perfect
  • Relative clauses (both defining and non-defining)
  • Adjective order - opinion/size/colour/nationality/material
  • Verbs followed by the infinitive and verbs followed by -ing
  • Polite language
  • Question tags
  • Present Continuous and Present Simple with future implication
  • Second Conditional
  • Phrasal verbs
  • Adjective modifiers: such, such a(n), so, so many/much
  • Reported speech
  • Indirect speech
  • Causative
  • I think so, I don’t think so, I hope so, I hope not.

Functional contents

  • Expressing opinions and feelings: I hope so, I hope not, I think so, I don’t think so, probably not, hopefully not, possibly, I doubt it, perhaps, maybe
  • Asking for directions: Do you know where the bank is?
  • Shopping: Could you tell me where the thumb tacks are?
  • Making comparisons: slightly, a little, much, a lot hotter
  • Describing a city/the country: fun, crowded, lively, polluted
  • Describing nature: dusty, rubbish, spoil, minerals
  • Asking for confirmation: The share price has risen, hasn’t it? Inflation will go down, won’t it?
  • Agreeing/Disagreeing with someone: So/Neither + Modal/Auxiliary + Subject - Neither am I. So do I. So have I. Neither will I.
  • Describing actions done to or by oneself: I cut my hair myself. I go to the hairdresser by myself. She introduced herself. I prefer working on my own.
  • Expressing future possibility: Perhaps he’ll postpone the meeting. Maybe transportation costs will go up.
  • Giving advice: You should/ought to reduce the price. I’d wear a suit to the interview if I were you.
  • Asking and talking about unfinished actions: I have been working on this project for 2 months. How long have you been living here?
  • Talking about past experiences: I’ve founded 3 companies. Have you ever taken someone to court?
  • Talking and asking about finished past habits: I used to lease an apartment in Queens. Did you use to take the minutes?
  • Talking about a sequence of past events: As soon as I had drunk my coffee, I went to work.
  • Describing an object when the word is unknown: It’s a thing which you use to get on the bus. It’s a person who works at a bar.
  • Talking about a sequence of events in the present: Before coming home, I go to the supermarket
  • Asking and requesting politely: Could you tell me where the bank is? Could you give me a quote on that? Would you mind opening your suitcase, please? Do you mind if I open your suitcase?
  • Talking and asking about events, which are scheduled to happen: When does the plane leave? My class starts in 10 minutes.
  • Asking for permission: May/Could/Can I begin the meeting?
  • Describing rules and regulations: You’re allowed to pay the landlord between the 1st and the 5th of the month.

Vocabulary contents

Review and extension

  • At work
  • Health and illnesses
  • Sports and free-time activities
  • Food and drink
  • Geographical features
  • Weather

New content

  • Staying in a hotel
  • Memories/Experiences
  • Planning a Trip/Travel/Transport
  • Construction of a house
  • Telephoning
  • At the restaurant
  • Relationships
  • Money
  • Employment and professions
  • Customs
  • Weather
  • Crime
  • Natural disasters
  • Books
  • Home
  • Describing people
  • Environment
  • Entertainment
  • Communication

LEVEL B2 (VANTAGE)

LEVEL B2 (VANTAGE)

General competences

At the end of the Vantage level students will achieve the following competences:

Linguistic competence

At this level the speaker has a good range of vocabulary for matters connected to his/her field and most general topics. He/she can vary formulation to avoid frequent repetition, but lexical gaps can still cause hesitation and circumlocution. Lexical accuracy is generally high, though some confusion and incorrect word choice does occur without hindering communication.

He/she has good grammatical control but has occasional “slips” or non-systematic errors.

He/she communicates with reasonable accuracy in familiar contexts. Errors occur, but it is clear what he/she is trying to express.

Regarding phonological and orthographic control, he/she has acquired a clear, natural, pronunciation and intonation. He/she can produce clearly intelligible continuous writing, which follows standard layout and paragraphing conventions. Spelling and punctuation are reasonably accurate but may show signs of mother tongue influence.

Sociolinguistic competence

He/she can express him/herself confidently, clearly and politely in a formal or informal register, appropriate to the situation.

Pragmatic competence

Flexibility: He/she can adjust what he/she says and the means of expressing it to the situation and the recipient and adopt a level of formality appropriate to the circumstances. He/she can vary formulation of what he/she wants to say.

Turn taking: He/she can intervene appropriately in discussion, exploiting appropriate language to do so. He/she can initiate, maintain and end discourse appropriately with effective turn taking.

Thematic development: He/she can develop a clear description or narrative, expanding and supporting his/her main points with relevant supporting detail and examples.

Coherence and cohesion: He/she can use a variety of linking words efficiently to mark clearly the relationships between ideas. He/she can use a limited number of cohesive devices to link his/her utterances into clear, coherent discourse.

Functional competence

Spoken fluency: He/she can communicate spontaneously, often showing remarkable fluency and ease of expression.

Propositional precision: He/she can pass on detailed information reliably.

Specific competences

Oral comprehension

He/she can understand the main ideas of propositionally and linguistically complex speech on both concrete and abstract topics delivered in a standard dialect, including technical discussions in his/her field of specialization. He/she can follow extended speech and complex lines of argument provided the topic is reasonably familiar, and the direction of the talk is sign-posted by explicit markers.

He/she can with some effort catch much of what is said around him/her, but may find it difficult to participate effectively in discussion with several native speakers who do not modify their language in any way. He/she can follow the essentials of lectures, talks and reports and other forms of academic/professional presentation, which are propositionally and linguistically complex.

He/she can understand recordings in standard dialect likely to be encountered in social, professional or academic life and identify speaker viewpoints and attitudes as well as the information content. He/she can understand most radio documentaries and most other recorded or broadcast audio material delivered in standard spoken language.

He/she can understand in detail what is said to him/her in the standard spoken language even in a noisy environment.

Oral production

He/she can give clear, detailed descriptions and presentations on a wide range of subjects related to his/her field of interest, expanding and supporting ideas with subsidiary points and relevant examples. He/she can give clear, detailed descriptions on a wide range of subjects related to his/her field of interest.

He/she can reasonably fluently relate a straightforward narrative or description as a linear sequence of points. He/she can give detailed accounts of experiences, describing feelings and reactions.

He/she can develop an argument systematically with appropriate highlighting of significant points, and relevant supporting detail. He/she can explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.

He/she can give a clear, prepared presentation, giving reasons in support of or against a particular point of view and giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options. He/she can take a series of follow up questions with a degree of fluency and spontaneity, which poses no strain for either him/herself or the audience.

Spoken interaction

He/she can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction, and sustained relationships with native speakers quite possible without imposing strain on either party. He/she can communicate with some confidence on familiar routine and non-routine matters related to his/her interests and professional field.

In informal discussions he/she can with some effort catch much of what is said around him/her, but may find it difficult to participate effectively in discussion with several native speakers who do not modify their language in any way.

He/she can account for and sustain his/her opinions in discussion by providing relevant explanations, arguments and comments. He/she can participate actively in routine and non-routine formal discussion. He/she can follow the discussion on matters related to his/her field, understand in detail the points given prominence by the speaker.

He/she can deal with most transactions likely to arise whilst travelling, arranging travel or accommodation, or dealing with authorities during a foreign visit.

Reading comprehension

He/she can read with a large degree of independence, adapting style and speed of reading to different texts and purposes, and using appropriate reference sources selectively. He/she has a broad active reading vocabulary, but may experience some difficulty with low frequency idioms.

He/she can scan quickly through long and complex texts, locating relevant details. He/she can understand specialised articles outside his/her field, provided he/she can use a dictionary occasionally to confirm his/her interpretation of terminology.

He/she can understand articles and reports concerned with contemporary problems in which the writers adopt particular stances or viewpoints. He/she can understand lengthy, complex instructions in his field, including details on conditions and warnings, provided he/she can reread difficult sections.

Written production

He/she can write clear, detailed texts on a variety of subjects related to his/her field of interest, synthesizing and evaluating information and arguments from a number of sources.

He/she can write clear, detailed descriptions of real or imaginary events and experiences, marking the relationship between ideas in clear connected text, and following established conventions of the genre concerned. He/she can write a review of a film, book or play.

He/she can write an essay or report which develops an argument, giving reasons in support of or against a particular point of view and explaining the advantages and disadvantages of various options.

Grammatical, functional and vocabulary contents

Grammatical contents

  • 3rd Conditional and Mixed Conditional
  • Comparatives: The more ___, the less ___.
  • Degree modifiers of adjectives: quite, pretty, rather, very, somewhat, hardly
  • Verbs followed by infinitive or -ing
  • Adjectives with -ing and with -ed (boring-bored, interesting-interested)
  • Around/among/beside
  • Prepositions
  • Phrasal verbs
  • Either ___or ___/Neither ___ nor ___
  • I 'd rather... You’d better...
  • I wish I had.../If only I had...
  • Not only___, but also___.
  • Phrasal and prepositional verbs
  • Modal verbs: must, can't, mustn’t, need, needn’t, don’t have to
  • Modal verbs: may, might, can
  • Relative sentences: I must have
  • Expressing contrast: In spite of, despite, even though, even if
  • Conjunctions, adverbs and prepositions expressing cause, consequence, purpose and result
  • Gradable and ungradable adjectives
  • Compound plurals
  • Let/make
  • Whatever, wherever, whoever, whenever
  • Causative
  • International English
  • Similes
  • Passive Voice
  • Prefixes and suffixes
  • Collocations
  • Used to, get used to, be used to
  • Verbs of ability: can, could, be able to, manage to
  • Past Perfect, Past Perfect Continuous, Future Perfect
  • Future in the past
  • Idioms
  • Both/all/some/most of which/who
  • Not since, never before, at no time, no sooner, under no circumstances

Functional contents

  • Talking about experiences with languages: The more I speak, the more fluent I am. My objective is to improve my grammar as/since it is my weakest area.
  • Talking about experiences at work: The more amusing my presentation the better the attention. The more detailed my report the happier my manager.
  • Talking about urban/rural environments: Madrid is somewhat cold in winter. Barcelona is pretty lively at night. There are not all that many shops in Mollerussa.
  • Expressing intensity or degree in the workplace: The new software is extremely frustrating. The report was very informative.
  • Describing skills and qualities: He is a very versatile programmer. I’d describe him as being self-motivated.
  • Assessing difficult situations: The business plan doesn’t seem particularly realistic. The brochure seems highly informative.
  • Describing management strategies and concepts: The companies are considering merging. I’d like to find a balance between tradition and innovation.
  • Reacting to objections: I advised him not to drive so fast. I warned her to study.
  • Talking about the distribution of furniture and things in a room and office: There is a socket underneath the draining board. Among the books there is a postcard. The stapler is on top of the filing cabinet. The drawers are beneath the desk.
  • Talking about cooking, recipes and eating habits: To make a cake, first you sieve flour into a bowl, then crack some eggs and whisk.
  • Talking about advantages and disadvantages: Taxes on fuel would force people to use public transport which would help the environment.
  • Talking about scenarios: Were there to be an earthquake then people are bound to die. Should an asteroid hit earth then life could be wiped out.
  • Talking about opinions: I’m bored with travelling. I’m fed up with politics.
  • Speculating about past events: The Titanic could have hit another ship. He couldn’t have robbed the bank because I saw him. If there had been enough food, then he wouldn’t have starved.
  • Speculating on outcomes: The venture could have succeeded if they had hired a fully qualified sales team. If the London Stock Exchange had crashed last night, we may have seen the value of the pound plummet.
  • Talking about the future using the past: I was going to go shopping tomorrow.
  • Providing tourist information: Buckingham Palace is a real tourist trap. A trip to the chocolate museum is a must.
  • Talking about working conditions: I took a job in spite of the low salary. I love my job even though I work long hours.
  • Talking about abilities: I managed to get to work on time despite the traffic jam. I don’t think he is capable of becoming the finance manager.
  • Speculating on cause, consequence and result: The operation costs must have been high for the company to fold. I bet either John or Peter could get promoted.
  • Talking about actions done on your behalf: I had my hair cut. I got my car repaired.
  • Describing business services: Susan has had her sales team take care of the complaints. We have had an architect draw up new plans of the office.
  • Expressing regrets: I’d rather have gone on a diet than had liposuction. I wish I hadn’t had a nose job. If only I hadn’t had a tattoo. I’d rather have worked in the marketing department. I wish the meeting had finished.
  • Describing colours and styles: Those lime-green flares are absolutely outrageous.
  • Talking about actions which will finish or be in progress in the future: By 5pm tonight I will have worked for 7 hours. I will be working at 5pm tonight.
  • Explaining safety precautions: You should keep away from fireworks, children should be kept back from fires
  • Explaining current and former procedures: Hard hats should be worn at all times on the building site. In some circumstances, tariffs may be restricted.
  • Complaining: Never before have I eaten such a bad meal. Under no circumstances will I come here again. Not since the last election have I heard such rubbish.
  • Participating in meetings: Shall we start with the minutes of the last meeting? Perhaps you could sum up the financial position. It was agreed that the production team would carry out a feasibility study.

Vocabulary content

  • Part of the body
  • Shapes, sizes and colours
  • Crime
  • Shopping and clothes
  • Climate
  • Money
  • Health
  • Crime and punishment
  • Food
  • Politics
  • US/UK English
  • Meetings

LEVEL C1 (Effective Operational Proficiency)

LEVEL C1 (Effective Operational Proficiency)

General competences

At the end of the Effective Operational Proficiency level students will achieve the following competences:

Linguistic competence

At this level the speaker can select an appropriate formulation from a broad range of language to express him/herself clearly without having to restrict what he/she wants to say. He/she has a good command of a broad lexical repertoire allowing gaps to be readily overcome with circumlocutions: little obvious searching for expressions or avoidance strategies. Good command of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms.

The speaker consistently maintains a high degree of grammatical accuracy; errors are rare and difficult to spot.

Regarding phonological and orthographic control, he or she can vary intonation and place sentence stress correctly in order to express finer shades of meaning. His/her layout, paragraphing and punctuation are consistent and helpful. Spelling is accurate, apart from occasional slips of the pen.

Sociolinguistic competence

At this level the speaker can recognise a wide range of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms, appreciating register shifts; may, however, need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is unfamiliar. They can follow films employing a considerable degree of slang and idiomatic usage as well as use language flexibly and effectively for social purposes, including emotional, allusive and joking usage.

Pragmatic competence

Flexibility: He/she can adjust what he/she says and the means of expressing it to the situation and the recipient and adopt a level of formality appropriate to the circumstances. He/she can vary formulation of what he/she wants to say.

Turn-taking: Can select a suitable phrase from a readily available range of discourse functions to preface his/her remarks appropriately in order to get the floor, or to gain time and keep the floor whilst thinking.

Thematic development: He/she can give elaborate descriptions and narratives, integrating sub-themes, developing particular points and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion

Coherence and cohesion: He/she can produce clear, smoothly flowing, well-structured speech, showing controlled use of organizational patterns, connectors and cohesive devices.

Functional competence

Spoken fluency: He/she can express him/herself fluently and spontaneously, almost effortlessly. Only a conceptually difficult subject can hinder a natural, smooth flow of language.

Propositional precision: He/she can qualify opinions and statements precisely in relation to degrees of, for example, certainty/uncertainty, belief/doubt, likelihood, etc.

2.5.2 Specific competences

Oral comprehension

He/she can understand enough to follow extended speech on abstract and complex topics beyond his/her own field, though he/she may need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is unfamiliar.

C1 students can recognize a wide range of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms, appreciating register shifts and are able to follow extended speech even when it is not clearly structured and when relationships are only implied and not signalled explicitly.

They can easily follow complex interactions between third parties in group discussion and debate, even on abstract, complex unfamiliar topics. He/she can follow most lectures, discussions and debates with relative ease.

These speakers can extract specific information from poor quality, audibly distorted public announcements, e.g. in a station, sports stadium etc. Can understand complex technical information, such as operating instructions, specifications for familiar products and services.

The speaker can understand a wide range of recorded and broadcast audio material, including some non-standard usage, and identify finer points of detail including implicit attitudes and relationships between speakers.

Oral production

The speaker can give clear, detailed descriptions and presentations on complex subjects, integrating sub-themes, developing particular points and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion.

He/she can give clear, detailed descriptions of complex subjects. Can also give elaborate descriptions and narratives, integrating sub-themes, developing particular points and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion.

He/she can deliver announcements fluently, almost effortlessly, using stress and intonation to convey finer shades of meaning precisely.

He/she can give a clear, well-structured presentation of a complex subject, expanding and supporting points of view at some length with subsidiary points, reasons and relevant examples. They can handle interjections well, responding spontaneously and almost effortlessly.

Spoken interaction

He/she can express him/herself fluently and spontaneously, almost effortlessly. Has a good command of a broad lexical repertoire allowing gaps to be readily overcome with circumlocutions. There is little obvious searching for expressions or avoidance strategies; only a conceptually difficult subject can hinder a natural, smooth flow of language.

In informal discussions he/she can understand in detail speech on abstract and complex topics of a specialist nature beyond his/her own field, though he/she may need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is unfamiliar. He/she can use language flexibly and effectively for social purposes, including emotional, allusive and joking usage

At this level the speaker can easily keep up with the debate, even on abstract, complex unfamiliar topics, can argue a formal position convincingly, responding to questions and comments and answering complex lines of counter argument fluently, spontaneously and appropriately.

He/she can participate fully in an interview, as either interviewer or interviewee, expanding and developing the point being discussed fluently without any support, and handling interjections well.

Reading comprehension

He/she can understand in detail lengthy, complex texts, whether or not they relate to his/her own area of speciality, provided he/she can reread difficult sections. Can understand any correspondence given the occasional use of a dictionary.

He/she can scan quickly through long and complex texts, locating relevant details. He/she can understand specialised articles outside his/her field, provided he/she can use a dictionary occasionally to confirm his/her interpretation of terminology.

He/she can understand in detail a wide range of lengthy, complex texts likely to be encountered in social, professional or academic life, identifying finer points of detail including attitudes and implied as well as stated opinions. They can also understand in detail lengthy, complex instructions on a new machine or procedure, whether or not the instructions relate to his/her own area of speciality, provided he/she can reread difficult sections

Written production

He/she can write clear, well-structured texts of complex subjects, underlining the relevant salient issues, expanding and supporting points of view at some length with subsidiary points, reasons and relevant examples, and rounding off with an appropriate conclusion.

He/she can write clear, detailed, well-structured and developed descriptions and imaginative texts in an assured, personal, natural style appropriate to the reader in mind.

He/she can write clear, well-structured expositions of complex subjects, underlining the relevant salient issues. Can also expand and support points of view at some length with subsidiary points, reasons and relevant examples.

Lexico-semantic, grammatical and functional contents

Lexico-semantic contents

  • Biographical details
  • Media and marketing language
  • Detailed hobbies
  • Working conditions and relations
  • Presenting points of view
  • Judgments
  • Pros and cons
  • Climate and forecast
  • Arguments
  • Questioning claims
  • Trends and beliefs

Grammatical contents

  • Assuming /supposing /given that
  • I’d be willing to ___, only if you ___.
  • Degrees of certainty
  • Verbs followed by infinitive or -ing (in use)
  • Time and progress: step by step...
  • As if/though
  • Reinforcing a point: What's more/Moreover/In addition
  • Prepositions (in depth)
  • Phrasal verbs (in depth)
  • Emphasizing: sheer/mere
  • Contrasting, compensating and generalizing: while/whereas/nonetheless/on the whole
  • May/might as well
  • The use of even
  • Cause and effect: because of.../due to.../owing to...
  • Probing questions: Why is that... happens to/just so happens...?
  • Advanced comparisons: just as.../every bit as...
  • Describing change
  • Thus
  • By any/all/no means
  • Believing and not believing
  • Comparatives and superlatives - evolution: busier and busier, the very latest
  • Conjunctions, adverbs and prepositions expressing cause, consequence, purpose and result

Functional contents

  • Talking real estate and man-made features
  • Describing and explaining personal status and relationships
  • Natural features
  • Explaining academia and progress
  • Navigating and making sense of the world of work
  • Literature and arts - deep discussions
  • Sports and music conversations
  • Talking history and ruler/government issues
  • Motoring (US/UK)
  • Accommodation and travelling
  • Banking environments
  • Food, cooking and tasting vocabulary
  • Climate vocabulary and stating forecasts
  • Religion and beliefs
  • Crime and military
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