Courses, Resources for adult learners, Resources for children, Tips

Exam options for learning Spanish

I teach over 50+ students a week in a variety of courses and classes. I have a growing Facebook group and active Email list. No, don’t worry this post isn’t about how great I am, moreover just how varied learners are.

Adults language-learning goals tend to be quite different to young learners. Adults are usually focused on improving their Spanish for health or cultural reasons, they want a more enriching travel experience, or they have Spanish family they’d like to communicate with better.

Young learners are usually working towards an exam; GCSE is an obvious one. The exam that schooled-children work towards if they choose Spanish as an option. This is usually with the AQA Exam Board and students will sit either a Foundation or Higher Exam Paper.

For Home Educated children they may opt for an iGCSE (an International qualification). Exam boards for this International qualification include Edexel Pearson and Cambridge.

The main differences between the GCSE and the iGCSE is the content of the cirriculum. The topics for the GCSE tend to be more “school” focused with a whole topic dedicated to School subjects and routines (something that home educated children would be unfamiliar with and therefore be disadvantaged in the exam).

The iGCSE curriculum still contains a section on school life and routine, however it is smaller and relates more to a school as an institute (eg. language school). Other topics are more universal and applicable outside of the classroom and in fact the UK.

Another option is the DELE (Diplomas de Español como Lengua Extranjera) are official diplomas issued buy the Spanish Instituto de Cervantes on behalf of the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science. These are a great alternative to the other exams and are especially beneficial for adults wanting to formalize their learning. Introductory level A1 accredits students ability to use basic language in everyday situations, then moves through A2, B1, B2, C1 to C2 which is considered mastery level where students have sufficient linguistic competence to perfectly handle and kind of situation, with spontaneity and a great deal of semantic and grammatical precision. (This is the level I achieved).

Want to receive support for your or the young learner in your life’s’ Spanish-learning journey? Read articles on the Spanish-speaking World. Access free lessons and our “Spanish Word of the Week”?
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