Common European Framework

The Euroexam tests on the CEFR scale

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) is an internationally-accepted standard for describing language ability, which is used in different language teaching and assessment contexts. The Framework uses a scale from level A1 to C2 (beginner to near-native), helping all stakeholders, learners, educational institutions and employers to make sense of a given language qualification. 

Universities and other academic institutions use a variety of methods to describe their language competence requirements for prospective international students. Some make explicit reference to the CEFR levels whilst others make reference to a number of well-known exams including IELTS, Cambridge, TOEFL and Trinity. Each of these exams have different approaches to language competence measurement and employ different marking methodologies, which complicates efforts to directly compare them.

However, the CEFR levels, against which all major exams are aligned, provide the most widely accepted common point of reference to support such comparisons. Euroexam International, similarly to other major exam boards, publishes CEFR equivalence tables, as the Framework is a practical tool for language professionals to evaluate and compare different testing systems and to promote common definitions of language competence through alignment with the CEFR proficiency scales.

Each level of the Euroexam suite of English Language Exams is directly built on the CEFR approach. Euroexam was involved in two Council of Europe projects in 2015 to develop model exam tasks for dissemination. Euroexam employs a combination of internal and independent research to support its claim of equivalence with CEFR and other major exams.

Euroexam CEFR Equivalence Table:

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Euroexam Pass - IELTS

Based on our internal and external research and Cambridge published equivalence tables, the Euroexam Level C1 Pass is equivalent to an overall 6.5 band score on the IELTS test. This level of English language competence is typical of the requirements of many universities throughout Europe in both Arts and Science courses.


Euroexam Pass

IELTS - overall band score IELTS - minimum single score
Euroexam Level C1 Pass 6.5 6.0
Euroexam Level B2 Pass 5.5 5.0

Euroexam Distinction - IELTS

The Euroexam Distinction demonstrates language competence that is a minimum half point IELTS band score higher than the equivalent of the Euroexam Pass rate.


Euroexam Distinction

IELTS - overall band score

IELTS - minimum single score

Euroexam Level C1 Distinction 7.5 6.5
Euroexam Level B2 Distinction 6.0 5.5