A1, A2 & B1 English tests

A1 Test

Level A1 test is required for citizens of non-EU countries who wish to marry and live in the United Kingdom with a British citizen or permanent resident/permanent visa. The goal is to ensure that the person understands and speaks everyday expressions and basic phrases to integrate into the culture of the country.

A2 Test

A new English language requirement at level A2 is being introduced for non-EEA partners and parents. The A2 test is applied after the applicant resides in the UK for 2.5 years with a family visa.

B1 Test

Test B1 is required for all applicants applying for the British Passport and Permanent Residence Visa (ILR). In addition to the B1 test, Life in the UK is also required for these processes.

Certificates A1, A2 and B1 are valid for 2 years, however in some situations they may be used after this period for a new application.

*Trinity College London

Assessment summary

At each stage, candidates carry out a number of speaking and listening tasks that show their fluency, accuracy and ability to communicate in English. Task components include:

  • The Conversation:An opportunity to demonstrate a realistic exchange of information, ideas and opinions at an appropriate level for the grade.
  • The Topic:Before the exam, the candidate prepares a topic of their choice – this is used as the basis for discussion and as the basis of a presentation at Advanced stage.
  • The Interactive task:A prompt from the examiner initiates candidate-led speaking and listening interactions – requiring an authentic exchange of information and opinions.
  • The Listening task: Short, spoken passages prompt the candidate to demonstrate prediction, deduction and inference skills.

Candidates take more responsibility for developing and directing the conversation, rather than simply responding to a series of questions.

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