Level C1
An advanced level English exam for business and social purposes.

The Certificate in Advanced English is the second highest level Cambridge English exam, at level C1 of the Council of Europe's Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. Choose CAE if you are reaching a standard of English that is adequate for most purposes, including social and professional situations, and in higher education.

Although the level of language skills required is not as high as for CPE (Certificate of Proficiency in English), CAE recognises the ability to communicate with confidence in English and deal with most aspects of everyday life.

CAE is taken by more than 60,000 people each year in more than 60 countries.

What will taking CAE help you do?

CAE is at Level C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) - an internationally recognised benchmark of language ability. The framework uses six levels to describe language ability from A1 to C2. 'Can Do' statements have been used to describe these levels in terms of real skills with language.

For example, at C1 level, typical users can be expected to:

  • read quickly enough to cope with an academic course
  • understand complex opinions
  • produce clear, well structured and detailed pieces of writing
  • express themselves well with a good degree of fluency
  • use English flexibly for social, professional and academic purposes.

Your preparation for CAE will give you these kinds of practical language skills.

What does CAE involve?

CAE has five papers:
  • Reading: 1 hour 15 minutes
    You will need to be able to understand texts from publications such as fiction and non-fiction books, journals, newspapers and magazines.
  • Writing 1 hour 30 minutes
    You will have to show you can produce two different pieces of writing such as an article, a report, a proposal and a review.
  • Use of English Paper 1 hour
    Your use of English will be tested by tasks which show how well you can control your grammar and vocabulary.
  • Listening: 40 minutes
    You need to show you can understand the meaning of a range of spoken material, including lectures, radio broadcasts, speeches and talks.
  • Speaking: 15 minutes
    You will take the Speaking test with another candidate or in a group of three, and you will be tested on your ability to take part in different types of interaction: with the examiner, with the other candidate and by yourself.
Cambridge English: Advanced
Set Texts for Paper 2: Writing 2013
One or both of the following texts may be read as preparation for the two optional set text tasks:
  • Lord of the Flies William Golding.
    (Teachers may choose to prepare candidates for questions on this set text by studying a film version as well as, or instead of, the novel.)
  • The Lighthouse P D James.
    (There is currently no film version of this book).
Candidates should be made aware that they should not attempt the set text question unless they have the necessary vocabulary and understanding of the text to answer the task set. Teachers are best placed to make a judgement as to which, if any, of the set texts and/or film versions may be appropriate and stimulating for a given teaching situation.

Registration for the CAE sessions

Schools can find information about registration for the CAE exams on the contact page. They can also register their candidates on-line on this web site.

Registration period and exam fees
'Paper Based' sessions 'Computer Based' sessions
Exam date
Final entry date
 Thursday 25 July 2013
24 June 2013
196 €
Saturday 17 August 2013
2 August 2013
 Friday 23 August 2013
21 July 2013
Saturday 21 September 2013
10 September 2013
Saturday 26 October 2013
15 October 2013
 Saturday 9 November 2013
8 October 2013
Saturday 16 November 2013
5 November 2013
 Wednesday 4 December 2013
Session available in Barcelona and Mataró
22 October 2013
Saturday 7 December 2013
26 November 2013
 Saturday 14 December 2013
Sesión disponible en Barcelona, Tarragona, Granollers, Vilanova i la Geltrú y Vilafranca del Penedès
9 October 2013

Late registration and cancellations

A late registration fee of 40 € per candidate will be charged for entries received after the end of the registration period. In the case of late entries space is subject to availability. If a candidate is unable to attend an exam session on medical grounds, a 24 € administration fee will be retained by the centre and the remainder of the fees will be returned to the candidate. No refund will be made for any other reason.

Special arrangements for candidates

Cambridge English provides a Special Arrangements service for some candidates, for example those with learning difficulties, hearing difficulties or visual difficulties.

For further information on the services we provide, click the links on the left or below:

Learning difficulties
Hearing or speaking difficulties
Visual difficulties

We also have information on the range of modified materials that can be provided for candidates with special requirements.


In order to avoid spelling mistakes on exam certificates, please make sure that candidates' names and surnames are spelt correctly and that you have included their date of birth. The centre cannot accept responsibility for spelling mistakes or missing accents on final certificates. Schools registering groups of students should provide us with their name, address, email and telephone number so that we can issue results directly to the school.


Top Tips for CAE

Cambridge English: Advanced 2013
Set Texts for Paper 2: Writing
Lord of the Flies William Golding.
The Lighthouse P D James

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