The English as a foreign language reference article from the Simple Wikipedia on 24-Jul-2004
(provided by Fixed Reference: snapshots of Wikipedia from

English as a foreign language

Support a children's charity online
English as a foreign language (EFL) is when people study English as a new language. In America it is often called English as a second language (ESL), and in the UK, it is called English as an additional language (EAL). Some people think that EFL and ESL are not the same. EFL is if you learn English to use in your own country. ESL is if you learn English to use in America or Britain or Canada.

Some people think that ESL is a bad word, because many students already know two or three languages. Most people do not think about the words.

EFL is an important business in Britain. There are many schools in Oxford or London. There are also many schools in the south of England. Many schools are in cities along the sea.

Many people study English as a foreign language because they get a better job. English is a very important language in business. English is also very important in education. Many pages on the internet are in English. English As A Second Language is the single most popular subject in the world, after mathematics.

Many people study English in a country where the people speak English. This way, many students learn listening and speaking English better.

Table of contents
1 English exams
2 Compare exams

English exams

There are many English exams. Many people study English for an exam. An English exam is important to show how well a person can speak English.

Cambridge exams

The Cambridge exams are very popular in Europe. The University of Cambridge, OCR makes these exams. There are five exams for general English. Students take these exams in many schools. Exams are offered in England. Exams are also offered in schools in many other countries.

The Cambridge exams test: reading, writing, grammar, speaking and listening.

The easiest exam is the KET. KET means Key English Test. The KET is the start of the Cambridge exams. The KET tests basic English.

The PET is more difficult. PET means Preliminary English Test. People with a PET know some English. They can survive social situations in English. They can also survive work situations in English. But they often find English difficult. They also make many mistakes.

The FCE is the most popular of the Cambridge English exam. FCE means First Certificate in English. The FCE is good for many businesses. People with a FCE can use English. They sometimes find English difficult. Normally they have no problems with English. But they make mistakes.

The CAE is a difficult exam. CAE means Certificate in Advanced English. The CAE is good for many universities. The CAE is also good for many businesses. People with a CAE have no problems working in England or America.

The CPE is the most difficult exam. CPE stands for Certificate of Proficiency in English. People who have a CPE are very good at English. They English is nearly as good as people who are from England or America. The CPE is good for universities. The CPE is also good for business.

There are two English exams for business. The BEC is the easier one. BEC means Business English Certificate. The BULATS is more difficult. BULATS means Business Language Testing Service.


The IELTS is an academic or professional exam. Universities in England often want an IELTS exam. Universities in Australia and New Zealand also often want an IELTS exam. IELTS is also becoming popular in North America. The IELTS tests: speaking, listening, writing and reading. People who want to go to university take a different IELTS exam. This option tests academic writing and academic reading.


The TOEFL is a very popular English exam. It is very popular in America. It is also very popular in countries which are friends with America. TOEFL means Test of English as a Foreign Language. The TOEFL is an academic exam. Many universities in America want a TOEFL exam.

In 1998 a new TOEFL was made. The new TOEFL uses computers. Its name is Computer-Based TOEFL (CBT). The old TOEFL did not stop. It is called ''Paper-Based TOEFL', but is not now available in all countries. Now, the CBT is more popular than the old TOEFL.


The TOEIC is a general English exam. TOEIC means Test of English for International Communication. The exam has 200 questions. Every question is a multiple- choice question. A multiple- choice question is a question where you choose which answer is correct.

The result of the TOEIC is a number. This number is between 10 and 990. 990 is the best number. The TOEIC number is often used for jobs. Many jobs need a number bigger than 600. Managers often need a number bigger than 800.

TOEIC numberLevel
10 - 400OK (beginner)
400-600medium (intermediate)
600-700good (high intermediate)
800-990Very good (advanced)


LCCIEB means London Chamber of Commerce and Industry Examinations Board. The LCCIEB makes many English exams. Many businesses like LCCIEB exams.

The EFB means English for Business. The EFB is a business English exam. It tests basic general English. It also tests more difficult business English.

The EFC means English for Commerce. The EFC is a business English exam. It tests business writing. It also tests business skills. Business skills are ideas how to manage a business. The EFC is more difficult than the EFB.

The PBE means Practical Business English. The PBE is a business English exam. It tests business speaking. It also tests business listening. The PBE is for basic English. People with a PBE can have a basic business conversation.

The SEFIC means Spoken English for Industry and Commerce. The SEFIC is a business English exam. It tests business speaking. It is more difficult than the PBE. It tests difficult business speaking. It also tests difficult business listening.

The WEFT means Written English for Tourism. The WEFT is an English business exam. It tests business speaking. It tests speaking at hotels. It also tests speaking in other parts of tourism. The WEFT also tests listening.

The BULATS means Business Language Testing Service. The BULATS is a special exams for big companies. The BULATS are made for a company. The BULATS for another company is different.


Pitman exams are made by the City and Guilds Group. There are two important English exams by Pitman.

The ESOL means English for Speakers of Other Languages. The ESOL tests English at many levels. The ESOL is good for going to many colleges. The Spoken ESOL is like the ESOL. But the Spoken ESOL only tests speaking and listening.

The EBC means English for Business Communications. The EBS is a business English exam. There are three levels.


The ARELS/Oxford exams are English exams for people who want to study in England. The ARELS exam tests speaking and listening. This exam tests writing and reading. Oxford Exams are now also made by University of Cambridge, OCR

There are three levels in the ARELS exam. The ARELS Preliminary is the easiest exam. The ARELS Higher is more difficult. People who have the ARELS Higher are good at speaking English. The ARELS Diploma is the most difficul exam. People who have the ARELS Diploma are very good at speaking English. They can speak English as well as many people in England. The ARELS Diploma and the ARELS Higher are good for univeristies.

There are two levels in the Oxford exam. The Oxford Preliminary is the easier exam. The Oxford Higher is more diffucult. The Oxford Higher is good for universities.

Compare exams

It is very difficult to compare English exams. Every exam is a little different. This table compares exams. The table is not very exact.

LevelIELTSCambridgeBECTOEFL (original)TOEFL (computer)TOEIC
Very good8.0CPE-670290990