Cpe Handbook

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  • Published : March 12, 2010
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Certificate of Proficiency in English
Handbook for teachers

© UCLES 2008 EMC/2318/8Y12

CPE content and overview



Test focus

Part 1

Three short texts with six four-option multiple-choice cloze questions on each. Four short texts with two four-option multiple-choice questions on each. Gapped text with seven questions. Long text with seven four-option multiple-choice questions. One compulsory question. Candidates answer one question from a choice of four questions (including the set text option). Modified open cloze with fifteen questions. One short text with ten word formation questions. Six sets of three gapped sentences Eight key word transformations. Two texts with four questions and a summary writing task. Four short extracts with two three-option multiple-choice questions on each. One long text with nine sentence completion questions. One long text with five four-option multiplechoice questions. One long text with six matching questions. Interview Collaborative task Individual long turns and follow-up discussion.

READING 1 hour 30 mins

Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

Assessment of candidates’ ability to understand the meaning of written English at word, phrase, sentence, paragraph and whole text level.

WRITING 2 hours

Part 1 Part 2

Assessment of candidates’ ability to write specified text types with a range of functions.

Part 1 Part 2

Assessment of candidates’ ability to demonstrate knowledge and control of the language system by completing various tasks at text and sentence level.

USE OF ENGLISH 1 hour 30 mins

Part 3 Part 4 Part 5

Part 1

LISTENING 40 mins (approx)

Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

Assessment of candidates’ ability to understand the meaning of spoken English, to extract information from a text and to understand speakers’ attitudes and opinions.

SPEAKING 19 mins

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Assessment of candidates’ ability to produce spoken English using a range of functions in a variety of tasks.

This handbook is for anyone who is preparing candidates for the Cambridge ESOL Certificate of Proficiency in English examination (CPE). The introduction gives an overview of CPE and its place within Cambridge ESOL. This is followed by a focus on each paper and includes content, advice on preparation and example papers. If you require additional CDs or further copies of this booklet, please email: ESOLinfo@CambridgeESOL.org

Inside front cover 2 University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations CPE content and overview 2 Key features of Cambridge ESOL examinations


2 3 3 3

Content of CPE The level of CPE Varieties of English Recognition

3 3 4 5

Official accreditation in the UK The CPE candidature Marks and results Special circumstances

5 5 5 5

Course materials Past papers and examination reports Speaking Test Preparation Pack for CPE Online support

6 6 6

Seminars for teachers Administrative information Further information


7 7 8

General description Structure and tasks The four parts of the Reading paper



12 Sample paper 17 Answer keys and answer sheet

1 1

18 General description 18 Structure and tasks 19 The two parts of the Writing paper 20 Preparation

21 Task types in the CPE Writing paper 23 Sample paper 25 Assessment 28 Sample scripts with examiner comments 44 Answer keys and mark scheme 45 Assessment of summary writing task 46 Answer Sheet 1 47 Answer Sheet 2 48 Sample scripts with examiner comments 53 Sample paper 56 Sample tapescript 60 Answer keys 61 Answer sheet 64 Preparation 66 Sample paper 69 Assessment

2 1

35 General description 35 Structure and tasks 36 The five parts of the Use of English paper 37 Preparation 40 Sample paper 50 General description 50 Structure and tasks 51 The four parts of the Listening paper 51...
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