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French as a foreign language tests validate the applicant's level of French at a given point in time. The result obtained is an assessment of your language skills. These tests are valid for a maximum of two years.
The Test de Connaissance du Français (TCF) is a general French proficiency test suitable for anybody wishing to assess their level of competence in French, whether for personal or professional reasons or for academic purposes. This test gauges the candidate's skills and level of proficiency in general French by scoring them in accordance with a graded scale that corresponds to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL). Issued by the Ministries of National Education, Higher Education and Research, it is standardised and calibrated by the Centre international d’études pédagogiques (CIEP) as the certifying body and a member of the ALTE (Association of Language Testers in Europe). All of the processes involved in the TCF meet the quality requirements of the 2008 version of the ISO 9001 standard. The test itself comprises three compulsory tests (listening, command of language structures and reading comprehension) and two additional tests (oral and writing). Results are valid for two years.
Should you wish to enrol on a first (Bachelor's) degree at a university or architectural college in France and you have not completed the DELF B2 or the DALF you will need to sit the TCF aimed specifically at enrolment requests and entitled TCF pour la DAP. The TCF-DAP is the only test recognised by the Conference of University Vice-Chancellors (CPU).
An electronic version of the TCF is also available for those wishing to sit it on a computer (TCF SO).
The Test d’Evaluation de Français (TEF)
The Test d’Evaluation de Français (TEF) is designed and administered by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) of the Paris Île-de-France region. This test gauges the candidate's skills and level of proficiency in general French by placing them on a graded scale that corresponds to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL) as well as Canadian language proficiency levels. It comprises a series of tests in the form of multiple choice questionnaires (reading comprehension, listening, vocabulary and structure) and two open tests (writing and oral). The test has been available in electronic format since 2005 with e-tef (for tests in MCQ format only), the results of which are available immediately. The validity period of TEF results is at the discretion of the user institution. The Paris Île-de-France CCI recommends that results should be considered valid for 1 year.
Official national and international recognition:
- French Ministry for Higher Education and Research (ministerial decree of 26 April 2012) as exemption from the TCF pour la DAP;
- Ministry for the Interior, Overseas Territories and Departments, Territorial Authorities and Immigration (decree of 11 October 2011 outlining the list of qualifications and certificates required of those applying for French nationality), valid for the purposes of naturalisation procedures;
- Canadian federal government (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) for assessing the language proficiency of potential immigrants to Canada (skilled workers' category or Canadian experience category);
- Québec Ministry for Immigration and Cultural Communities through the TEFAQ, valid for immigration procedures involving those immigrating to Quebec;
- many French-speaking business and educational institutions.
For more information on the TEF please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Enrolment: contact the approved centre of your choice directly. Each approved centre is free to set the schedule for the sessions that it organises and determines the cost of registering for the TEF in accordance with the costs associated with organising the tests.