English Level
Comparison

Comparing English Language Levels & CEFR


When it comes to measuring someone's level of English, there are a number of different scores and frameworks that are used to determine the difference between beginner, intermediate, upper-intermediate and advanced.

When trying to understand your level of English proficiency it can sometimes be confusing as people may use different terminology to describe the same thing. Read on to find out more about different kinds of English level frameworks and to compare different exam scores.

woman in red shirt taking an english exam
BSC Edinburgh students in classroom

What is the CEFR?

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (known as CEFR) is a framework or guideline used to describe achievements of language learners of across Europe.

The CEFR shows language ability on a six-point scale, starting at A1 for beginners, until C1 Advanced and C2 for those who are proficient in the language.

CEFR English Level Comparison

Below you can find a table that can be used to cross-reference different levels English. Contrast the CEFR with popular exam scores including the IELTS, TOEFL, TOEIC and different Cambridge exams. Please note that the table below is for guidance only and should not be used as an exact indicator.

LevelCEFRCambridgeIELTSTOEFLTOEICBULATSPTETRINITY
iBTITPL&RS&WAcademicGeneralISEGESE
ProficiencyC2CPE8.5 – 9.0N/AN/AN/AN/A90 – 10085 – 90Level 5ISE IV12
AdvancedC1CAE
BEC Higher
7.0 – 8.0110 – 120627 – 677945 – 99040075 – 8976 – 84Level 4ISE III10 – 11
Upper-IntermediateB2FCE
BEC Vantage
5.5 – 6.587 – 109543 – 626785 – 944310 – 39960 – 7459 – 75Level 3ISE II7 – 9
Intermediate +
IntermediateB1PET
BEC Preliminary
4.0 – 5.057 – 86460 – 542550 – 784240 – 30940 – 5943 – 58Level 2ISE I5 – 6
Pre-Intermediate +
Pre-IntermediateA2KET
YLE Flyers
3.0 – 3.524 – 56337 – 459225 – 549160 – 23920 – 3930 – 42Level 1ISE 03 – 4
ElementaryA1KET
YLE Movers
0 – 2.58 – 230 – 336120 – 22480 – 1590 – 190 – 29Level A1N/A2
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Take our English Level Test

Still not sure what level of English you are? Take our 15-minute English grammar test and find out how your grammar skills compare.

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