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How to Know Your French Proficiency and Why Use DELF

What is DELF?

The French Language Proficiency Certificate or DELF is an internationally recognized certificate awarded by France’s national education ministry. It consists of multiple assessments that measure language proficiency. The exam consists of four parts: oral comprehension, oral expression, written comprehension, and written expression. There are different versions for adults and children. These assessments follow the same format and standards but with varying content and themes. There are also different levels of proficiency, they are divided into 6 levels, each level is a separate assessment meaning it’s not one big assignment and based on your score is your level of proficiency, but rather 6 different assessments that an individual can take. The six levels are put in three groups:

Why get your DELF certificate?

Although created by France the DELF is globally recognized, meaning anywhere where French is an official language your DELF is completely valid, and it always will be a DELF certificate never expires. They are often used by administrative bodies, employers, and educational institutions, having this on your resume, on job applications, or in school, applications can add extra value. Recently the examinations are becoming more well-known and receiving greater recognition from administrative organizations, employers, and educational institutions. The cause for this is the integration of the exam into Canada, even though the DELF is internationally recognized, up until recently those who knew about were those in the government and its branches such as education. In Canada, more than 65,000 people have taken the exams over the past few years. Those with a DELF level of B2 are exempted from the language entry test for registration in French universities. As an international student have the certification can open doors at universities in France and an increasing number of European and Francophone universities. The opportunities that having this certificate can give you are why I took it in my last year of high school. Although I was in French immersion and my immersion certificate would be all I need to qualify for many jobs Canada that requires you to be fluent in French, having the DELF on top of that gives me an advantage because it shows exactly how fluent I am. With just an immersion certificate the person could be any level of French speaker for an employer that uncertainty compared to the clearly explained and set level of a DELF is an easy choice to make when deciding which candidate to hire.

How and where to get your DELF?

As of 2019, the DELF examinations are available in 174 countries. The exams are held at certified examination centers, there are 5 different categories of exam centers: school boards, Alliances Françaises, universities and colleges, Ministries of Education, and associations. Depending on where you take the exam and what level the price of the exam can vary. For instance, if your school board is an exam centre and has been for a few years the board may pay for it. To find out where and when you can take it if your school does not offer it is simple, all you have to do is go to the DELF website go to the menu where there is a section for locations, one for the price, and one for dates.

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Julie B.
Criminal Justice, French, PoliSci, and Law Tutor | + posts

As someone who comes from a multilingual family with French as my second language, I know the challenges that come with learning French as a non-native speaker. In my experience learning French growing up and as an in-class tutor for French the student that not only succeed in but also retain the language the most when fun for them. The students have fun when it relates to their own interests, and are give real life situations they do and encounter in their everyday life, this way of learning a second language is become use in many schools replacing the old repletion and memorization.

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