What’s a TEF?

What’s a TEF?


Organized by the Paris Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the TEF (Test d’Evaluation de Français), created in 1998, is an internationally recognized certificate attesting to French language competence according to European norms, used for entrance into French Grandes Ecoles and for proof of bilingualism by the Canadian Government.  The TEF is used in more than 120 testing centers of the Alliance Française worldwide, and in nearly fifty universities. As concerns the AUCP, the TEF is a valid and reliable way to validate and certify French progress achieved over the course of a semester of study.

Understanding TEF Results

Unlike other instruments, the TEF provides a nuanced profile of each candidate’s overall linguistic skills, targeting three major areas of language competence and attributing a numerical score and level rating to each:

  • Written Comprehension
  • Oral Comprehension
  • Vocabulary and Structure

At the AUCP, students take the TEF at the beginning and end of each semester. In their test results, candidates receive a raw overall quantitative score relative to 900 possible points, as well as a point breakdown for each of the previously-mentioned sections. To better understand the language levels and the evaluation scales that are used internationally, you can use the table below.

AUCP Language Level Equivalencies - TEF

The large majority of students completing the AUCP program improve their language level by one full level (A2 to B1, B1 to B2 or B2 to C1); some even progress by two levels! Language progress like this is proof that the combination of learning inside and outside the classroom, thanks to the AUCP’s signature French Practicum immersion strategies, works wonders on gaining competence in the French language. Today, no other study abroad program has consistently measured language acquisition in this way since 2000, using a valid and reliable independent testing instrument.

But it doesn’t stop there, because at the AUCP we help you to understand and put into context your point progress by breaking down your scores further and measuring your achievable progress.

Did you know? On average, AUCP students attain 34% of their achievable progress in one semester. But what does that mean? To learn more about achievable progress, click here.


You can download a hi-res PDF version of the document above here. To learn more about the ways that AUCP encourages linguistic progress, visit the Immersion section of our website.

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