Find your Language Level

Find the best level of Language course for you

Community Learning offers a range of Language courses, use the explanations below to find out which class may be best for you.

First Steps

First Steps (Level 1)

  • I can understand a few familiar spoken words and phrases
  • I can say and repeat single words and short simple phrases
  • I can recognise and read out a few familiar words and phrases
  • I can write or copy simple words or symbols correctly

First Steps / Next Steps (Level 2)

  • I can understand a range of familiar spoken phrases
  • I can answer simple questions and give basic information
  • I can understand and read out familiar written phrases
  • I can write one or two short sentences to a model and fill in the words on a simple form

Next Steps / Moving on to Improvers (Level 3)

  • I can understand the main points from a short spoken passage made up familiar language
  • I can ask and answer simple questions and talk about my interests
  • I can understand the main points from a short written text in clear printed script
  • I can write a few short sentences with support, using expressions which I have already learnt

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Improvers

Listening

  • I can understand the main points and some of the detail from a spoken passage made up of familiar language in simple sentences (Level 4)
    OR
  • I can understand the main points and opinions in spoken passages made up of familiar material from various contexts (Level 5)

Speaking

  • I can take part in a simple conversation and I can express my opinions (Level 4)
    OR
  • I can give a short prepared talk, on a topic of my choice, including expressing my opinions (Level 5)

Reading

  • I can understand the main points and some of the detail from short written texts in familiar contexts (Level 4)
    OR
  • I can understand the main points and opinions in written texts from various contexts (Level 5)

Writing

  • I can write a short text on a familiar topic, adapting language which I have already learnt (Level 4)
    OR
  • I can write a short text on a range of familiar topics, using simple sentences (Level 5)

Moving on to Intermediate (Level 6)

  • I can understand the difference between present and past and future events in a range of spoken material
  • I can give a short prepared talk, expressing opinions and answering simple questions about it, using a variety of structures
  • I can understand the difference between present, past and future events in a range of texts
  • I can write a text, giving and seeking information and opinions, using a variety of structures

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Intermediate

Listening

  • I can understand longer passages and recognise people’s points of view (Level 7)
    OR
  • I can understand passages including some unfamiliar material from which I can recognise attitudes and emotions (Level 8)

Speaking

  • I can answer unprepared questions in a conversation or following a presentation (Level 7)
    OR
  • I can narrate events, tell a story or relate the plot of a book or film and give my opinions about it (Level 8)

Reading

  • I can understand longer texts and recognise people’s points of view (Level 7)
    OR
  • I can understand texts including some unfamiliar material from which I can recognise attitudes and emotions (Level 8)

Writing

  • I can write a text, e.g. a report, article or story, conveying opinions and points of view (Level 7)
    OR
  • I can produce formal and informal texts in an appropriate style on familiar topics (Level 8)

Moving on to Advanced (Level 9)

  • I can understand the gist of a range of authentic passages in familiar contexts
  • I can take part in a discussion, giving and justifying my opinions and ideas
  • I can understand a wide range of authentic texts in familiar contexts
  • I can communicate ideas accurately and in an appropriate style over a range of familiar topics

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Advanced

Listening

  • I can understand the main points of an authentic spoken passage or conversation involving one or more speakers (Level 10)
    OR
  • I can understand the main points of authentic spoken passages and conversations in a range of different contexts (Level 11)
    OR
  • I can identify the majority of points and am able to infer the meaning of a range of authentic passages and conversations spoken at near native speed (Level 12)

Speaking

  • I can give a presentation on a chosen theme and respond readily to questions (Level 10)
    OR
  • I can give a presentation on a chosen theme and argue my viewpoints with some degree of success (Level 11)
    OR
  • I can participate in discussions relating to a variety of situations and topics, taking the initiative where appropriate (Level 12)

Reading

  • I can understand authentic written texts of moderate length and complexity. I can produce a summary covering the majority of points (Level 10)
    OR
  • I can understand authentic texts of some degree of complexity and abstraction in a range of different contexts. I can produce a summary covering most essential points (Level 11)
    OR
  • I can understand and am able to infer the meaning of a range of more complex texts. I can produce a detailed report covering all essential points (Level 12)

Writing

  • I can structure my writing to produce a coherent text, in an appropriate register, for a specific purpose e.g. a letter to an employer or an account of a visit (Level 10)
    OR
  • I can write coherent text, in an appropriate register, for different purposes. To include communicating information, ideas and opinions e.g. a review, an article or a report (Level 11)
    OR
  • I can write extended text using a wide range of language in a variety of registers covering more specialised contexts e.g. work-related or in a specialised area of study (Level 12)

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Upper Advanced

Listening

  • I can understand extended speech of moderate length and complexity involving one or more speakers and can summarise the key points (Level 13)
    OR
  • I can understand extended speech of some degree of complexity and abstraction involving a number of speakers and can summarise the key points (Level 14)
    OR
  • I can understand extended speech in unfamiliar contexts and can summarise the key points and most of the details (Level 15)
    OR
  • I can understand almost everything I hear, including in familiar specialised contexts, and, if required, can report back on what I have heard (Level 16)
    OR
  • I can understand virtually everything I hear and, if required, can report back comprehensively on what I have heard (Level 17)

Speaking

  • I can sustain a conversation and can find ways of expressing myself with relative ease (Level 13)
    OR
  • I can play a pro-active role in discussions on a range of topics in an appropriate register and can make myself understood with relative ease (Level 14)
    OR
  • I can take a leading role in discussions speaking coherently in a wide variety of situations (Level 15)
    OR
  • I can communicate with ease in both formal and informal situations, using a wide range and variety of language appropriately (Level 16)
    OR
  • I can communicate effortlessly and confidently in most situations, showing a command of language which enables me to express finer shades of meaning (Level 17)

Reading

  • I can understand a range of texts, of moderate length and complexity, including specialised texts written for a non-specialist audience, and note the key points (Level 13)
    OR
  • I can understand a range of texts of some degree of complexity and abstraction including specialised texts written for a non-specialist audience, and note the key points (Level 14)
    OR
  • I can understand texts outside my field of expertise and note the key points and most of the details (Level 15)
    OR
  • I can understand and interpret almost everything I read, including texts in familiar specialised contexts, and, if required, report back on what I have read (Level 16)
    OR
  • I can understand and interpret virtually everything I read and, if required, translate or report back comprehensively on what I have read (Level 17)

Writing

  • I can produce extended texts or reports on a range of topics in an appropriate register, using a range of appropriate concrete and abstract vocabulary (Level 13)
    OR
  • I can produce extended texts or reports on a range of topics in a variety of registers, using a wide range of language forms (Level 14)
    OR
  • I can produce well-structured text of some length which clearly expresses an argument or specific viewpoint, using a wide range and variety of language (Level 15)
    OR
  • I can communicate with ease, producing texts for a range of purposes, using a sophisticated range and variety of structures (Level 16)
    OR
  • I can communicate fluently and effortlessly in writing in most situations, showing a command of language which enables me to express finer shades of meaning. I can create or translate texts accurately showing an appropriate sensitivity to style and register (Level 17)

You can download your own copy of the Language Ladder here. (PDF, 182KB)

If you are still unsure about which class to choose or have any other questions you can contact us on 01908 254070 or email the Curriculum Manager for Languages.

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Last Updated: 22 October 2021