English language proficiency is a fundamental skill required to work, study and succeed in many countries around the world. Many employers analyze the English speaking and writing skills of the candidates before they hire someone. English skills are not crucial just for finding employment, but it is invaluable at building connections and relationships in various sections of life.
The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, better known as the CEFR standard, has put forth guidelines that help determine an individual’s language proficiency level. These levels are used everywhere from language schools to resumes. For English, these levels range from A1-C2 and describe how good your language skills are. We will examine each of these levels and provide you with insights on how to move from a lower level to the more advanced ones.
When it comes to English levels, A levels are the most fundamental and consist of A1 and A2.
The A1 level is the beginner of all the levels and individuals at this level can understand several standard phrases and terms in English. Their vocabulary is limited to around 700 words, and they can survive in an English-speaking locality with a translator tool. They can carry out basic conversations in the English language and provide personal details pretty accurately. But the person they are conversing with will have to talk slowly and better enunciate their words to ensure that this person understands their statements. An A1 level speaker will also take some time to form the right phrases and sentences in their heads before uttering them.
You can get to A1 levels if you put in several hours of work. You can easily understand and grasp the basics of the English language with the help of an online application. Remember to keep learning regularly in order to not lose touch.
The A2 level is referred to as the Elementary level, and those at this level will naturally have access to a broader range of terms and sentences. They can communicate with others on a few more topics and can receive and convey information pretty efficiently. At the A2 level, the individual will start to use various tenses such as the past and the future tense. They will begin referring to events that had previously occurred and their future plans. Despite this additional knowledge, the conversations an A2 level speaker can hold with someone extremely proficient in English will be pretty limited. Grammatical understanding deepens when they arrive at A2 level, and they will have more than 1500 words at their disposal. Though they can better understand others at A2 level, they will still require them to speak slowly. This level is commonly found among those who haven’t studied the language in many years.
One of the best ways to reach the A2 level is by concentrating more on topics that cover daily interactions and communications necessary for surviving in a strange locality. Focus on different tenses and try to include them in your regular conversations. You can also write down the most common sentences you will be using in daily conversations.
After the A levels, we come to the B levels, which are naturally the intermediate levels of English proficiency. These levels consist of B1 and B2.
At this level, speakers become more proficient in talking about their daily activities. They can express their views or state facts regarding their family, school, work, locality, etc. Speakers can now give better descriptions regarding various topics and even give out their opinions. When asked about their dreams and aspirations, they can respond clearly. At B1 level, you will be able to navigate quite effortlessly through an English speaking region. B1 speakers are much more confident and can make the necessary requests at the establishments they visit. At the B1 level, they will have knowledge of 2500 words.
While making the shift from a beginner to an intermediate English speaker, you must be consistent with your learning and dedicate several minutes to this activity each day. You are now also equipped with the ability to detect and correct any mistakes you make, so keep doing that to get to this level. When trying to get to B2 level, you should start focussing on learning entire sentences rather than individual words.
This is the second of the two intermediate levels. You have acquired the basic knowledge required to use this language efficiently, but you are yet to reach the levels of a proficient English speaker. At the B2 level, conversations no longer require either party to talk slowly and are much more effortless. B2 level speakers have the ability to both understand and create texts based on their area of expertise. Besides expressing their opinion, B2 speakers can also point out different advantages and disadvantages. This level is commonly found among adults if they have been regular at learning and practising the language. The B2 level is the one usually expected in both academic and work settings to ensure easy communication. B2 level speakers might still make mistakes, but they have all the necessary skills and information to live and thrive in a space frequented by English speakers. By the time someone reaches the B2 level, they will have acquired over 4000 words.
To move from B1 to B2, you must start facing challenges and try to deal with topics that are unfamiliar to you. Focus more on your pronunciation and take note of how native speakers talk. You can try to imitate their rhythms and stresses. Many learners find that their progress reduces when they reach higher levels of a language. So, if you have been going at it on your own, it might be time to get the help of an English language tutor.
The C levels are the third and final set of levels in the English language skills. These levels are made up of C1 and C2 levels.
Once individuals have reached this level, they can read complex texts and understand the hidden meanings within them. They can now use the language in academic or social situations with ease and can also produce well-structured and elaborate texts that deal with challenging concepts. With 8000 words at their disposal, they will start to understand not-so-obvious jokes in texts and dialogues. The number of errors they make goes down considerably, and they have a firm grasp over complex grammar.
Getting to the C1 level can be done by taking part in online courses conducted in English. Choose topics related to your field of work so that you will gain knowledge while learning new terms and phrases. Make sure that you keep practising how to use these phrases in your regular life.
We have arrived at the final level of English language skills. A speaker who is at this level is extraordinarily fluent and can efficiently describe anything they have an understanding of. These speakers can construct complex sentences complete with words that are not commonly used. In a few words, at the C2 level, you have mastered the English language.
To reach this level, you must seamlessly integrate the English language in your life. Keep communicating regularly with native speakers and challenge yourself to speak in unexpected situations. If you have moved to an English-speaking country, you can quite easily achieve the proficiency level in a particular amount of time.
It can take hundreds of hours of consistent hard work to proceed from one level to the next. But, each level opens up new avenues to the learner of the English language. With the help of the right tools and regular practice, you can certainly reach the proficiency level of C2 one day.
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