Euroexam: Level B1 / Niveau B1

At this level, Euroexam measures candidate's ability to:

  • understand the main points of familiar matters encountered in work or school,
  • deal with most situations likely to arise while travelling in an area where the language is spoken,
  • produce simple connected text on topics of personal interest,
  • describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes, and ambitions, and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.

Overview of the Exam

Euroexam: Level B1 consists of four parts covering the four principal language skills:

 

Number of tasks

Time (minutes)

Marks

Reading /
Leseverstehen

3

35'

25

Writing /
Schreiben

2

50'

25

Listening /
Hörverstehen

3

30'

25

Speaking /
Sprechen

4

20'

25

 

 

Total: 215 min + breaks

Total: 100

Candidates are allowed to use ANY printed (i.e. not electronic) dictionary in the reading, writing, the last five minutes of the listening and the preparation period of the speaking tests.

Click here for our Bring a dictionary (or two) page for more details on dictionary usage, and our suggestions for the most efficient use of dictionaries during the exam.


The Exam in Detail

A description of each and every exam task.

 

Reading / Leseverstehen

The reading test consists of 3 tasks, and takes a total of 35 minutes.

Task 1 – Paragraph Headings

  • Candidates receive a text of 250-350 words; excerpted from a narrative text, a descriptive text, or correspondence consisting of seven sections or paragraphs (one is used as an example), and nine paragraph titles or headlines; the task is to match the heading to the appropriate paragraph. An example is provided.
  • This task tests the ability to understand globally.

Task 2 – Scan Reading

  • Candidates receive four texts on a single topic, totalling 420-560 words, and eight statements (one is an example) containing information from one of the four texts or sections. The task is to decide which section each statement comes from. The texts typically contain a lot of information, often fairly densely, and there will often be some numerical information e.g. prices, phone numbers, dates, times etc. An example is provided. his task tests the ability to scan for specific information.

Task 3 – Multiple-Choice Reading

  • This task uses a single text of 250-350 words, normally an article, letter or narrative, followed by six multiple-choice comprehension questions. his task tests detailed comprehension, overall understanding, and interpretation of the purpose of text.

Writing / Schreiben

The writing test consists of 2 tasks, and takes a total of 50 minutes.

Task 1 – Transactional Writing

  • Candidates fill in a blank form, such as an application form, a questionnaire, a feedback form, or a report form, with various pieces of information. The form consists of four short and four extended responses. The word limit for each extended response is 15-20 words. This task tests communicating basic personal information.

Task 2 –Discursive Writing

  • Candidates are given a choice of two questions, and write ca. 80-100 words within the genre specified, typically a personal email or postcard. Content may include a description of recent events, of social occasions, visits, changes, moves, jobs, places, or people. This task tests informal letter writing skills; describing, relating personal information, narrative language, some functions such as giving advice.

Listening / Hörverstehen

The listening test consists of 3 tasks, and takes a total of approximately 35 minutes. Candidates listen to recorded material and complete a task sheet.

Task 1 – Short Conversations

  • Candidates hear six short conversations, all taking place in the same location, e.g. a train station, but of several different discourse types. The task consists of eight pictures or eight short blocks of text, or a list of eight items. Candidates have to select six correct answers out of eight possibilities, e.g. choose the picture that corresponds to the speakers they hear.
  • This task tests understanding the overall idea, understanding main points, distinguishing between fact and opinion, identifying simple discourse markers which organise what is being said, picking out important information, identifying speaker’s mood.

Task 2 – Making Notes

  • Candidates hear an extended monologue, such as an answering machine message or an oral explanation of a process. The task consists of notes forming a summary of the text with nine gaps representing words or phrases of up to three words, marking key information from the text. Candidates have to fill the gaps with an appropriate word or phrase.
  • This task tests understanding the main points, picking out important specific information, and following discourse.

Task 3 – Radio Programme

  • The text is an excerpt from a radio programme, such as news, documentary or formal discussion. The task consists of ten multiple- choice questions, each including three options.
  • This task tests understanding the main points, listening selectively, understanding and utilising features of redundancy, and understanding some detail.

Speaking / Sprechen

The speaking paper consists of four tasks, and takes approximately 20 minutes, with an additional ten minutes given beforehand for preparation for Task 2. The candidates may use printed dictionaries during the preparation stage. The tasks are designed to elicit a range of speaking skills. Candidates are examined in pairs with two examiners present, one acting as an interlocutor, the other as an assessor.

Task 1 – The Interview

  • Candidates are first asked a number of scripted questions, with the intention of relaxing them and eliciting basic social interaction. Questions and prompts encourage candidates to give their opinions, explanations, express preferences, and describe people and places. Some possible topics include travel, family, hobbies, education, and relationships. As the candidates’ skills in basic social interaction and conversation on familiar topics are being tested, they should be attentive to turn-taking and at the same time attempt full responses, avoiding short answers.
  • The task tests comparing, stating an opinion / preference, giving explanations, describing a place, and describing a person.

Task 2 – The Picture Story

  • Each candidate receives a picture story. The task is to tell the story. Before meeting the examiner, the candidate has ten minutes to prepare. The opening line of the story is given. The candidate then tells the story. The candidate may take notes in the preparation stage but should not read aloud from a prepared script.
  • The stories are everyday incidents, with limited complications or confusions to explain. There is typically one main event in the story and the rest are straightforward sequences leading up to or following from this.
  • The task tests sequencing events, describing cause and effect, comparing, describing experiences.

Task 3 – Transactional Dialogues

  • The interlocutor has cue cards and corresponding dialogue frames. For each task the candidate looks at the information on a cue card (providing a context and a communicative need) and then produces an appropriate utterance to the interlocutor. The interlocutor replies in line with the dialogue frame. The candidate then responds.
  • One card will involve an everyday situation in the street, in a café, in a workplace, at home etc., and involve an informal interaction with a friend or colleague, requiring functions of greeting, ordering, offering, and/or expressing preferences. The other cards will involve more demanding formal contexts requiring the candidate to introduce complex ideas into the conversation and attempt to achieve more difficult communicative goals. Functions include requesting, apologising, confirming or checking, expressions of surprise or anticipation, asking for information or directions, asking for help, suggesting, complaining, persuading, expressing sympathy, expressing regret, making complex arrangements, refusing or denying, or hypothesising.
  • The task tests functional exponents for requesting /giving information, asking for clarification, booking something, confirming / denying, and paying for something.

Task 4 – Discussion

  • Candidates receive a card with a sentence describing a problem or situation. After thinking of a few ideas, the candidates discuss the advantages and disadvantages of various options before coming to an agreement about the most suitable.
  • The task tests Stating an opinion / preference, giving reasons, and comparing / getting to an agreement.

Topics on the Speaking Test

There is no limitation on topic areas, but they may include: social gatherings, travel, free time, shopping, meeting people, family, hobbies, holidays, places, daily routines, health, food and drink, education, friends, media, crime, relationships, housing and accommodation.

  • Family
  • History/culture-related events and objects
  • Relations with other people
  • Environment, geography, animals, nature
  • Jobs and professions
  • Opinion, review description of art, book, theatre, film, etc.
  • Everyday life, daily routine
  • Free time, hobbies, relaxation
  • Expressions of debate, persuasion, advantages/disadvantages, deduction
  • Health, medical treatment, health status
  • Food and drink, cooking, eating out
  • Cities, districts, counties, buildings, street objects
  • Media, entertainment, press
  • Houses, accommodation, rooms, objects, furniture
  • Computer technology, communication
  • Countries, nationalities, continents
  • Expression of actions, movements, processes
  • Education, subject, lessons
  • Personality, behaviour
  • Feelings and emotions
  • Language of instructions
  • Stages in life, biography
  • Politics, society, government, state/government bodies
  • Travel
  • Law

Evaluation Criteria - B1

Click on the following links for the Euroexam: Level B1 evaluation criteria for speaking skills and writing skills.


Level B1 descriptors

 

 

Listening

Can understand the main points of clear standard speech on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. Can understand the main point of many radio or TV programmes on current affairs or topics of personal or professional interest when the delivery is relatively slow and clear.

Reading

Can understand texts that consist mainly of high frequency everyday or job-related language.
Can understand the description of events, feelings and wishes in personal letters

Spoken Interaction

Can deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken.
Can enter unprepared into conversation on topics that are familiar, of personal interest or pertinent to everyday life (e.g. family, hobbies, work, travel and current events).

Spoken Production

Can connect phrases in a simple way in order to describe experiences and events, my dreams, hopes and ambitions.
Can briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans. Can narrate a story or relate the plot of a book or film and describe my reactions.

Writing

Can write simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest.
Can write personal letters describing experiences and impressions.