You have arrived to learn English at Oxford English Academy.  On the path to success, you are moving up in the world of speaking English. In no time you’re going to be talking like you’ve lived in Oxford or Cape Town your whole life. Your friends are going to start wondering what your native tongue is. Or, if you are just one of those multi-lingual whizz kids!

So, what can I already do? And what does that mean as I move along the seemingly long path to English speaking excellence?

In other words, what is a CAN DO statement when describing my level of English.

You may have heard your level being loosely referred to as:

Beginner (A1) –  you’re the new kid on the block learning English, at the start, a newbie or a novice.

Elementary (A2) – you’re getting to grips with the fundamentals the ABC’s of English, the basics like the meat and potatoes of a meal before we start spicing it up with fancy words and expressions.

Intermediate (B1) – this does not mean so-so in the not so good sense. You could say you’re 50% there, on the progress scale you’re sitting in the middle. This is a really rewarding place to be and you can already start to say you’re getting pretty fluent and acquainted with English.

Upper-intermediate (B2) –  this is where you start to get extreme with your skills.

Advanced (C1) –much like being the tech savvy at technology, you’re now becoming a whiz at English and one step away from an extreme expert.

Let’s look at a more formal breakdown of these levels.

A1 – Can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases.

A2 –  Can understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to everyday subjects.

B1 – Can understand the main points on familiar subjects encountered in work, school, leisure, etc.

B2 – Can understand the main ideas of complex texts on both concrete and abstract topics, including         technical discussions in their field of specialisation.

C1 – Can understand well, a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning.

C2 – Can understand with ease virtually everything heard or read.

But remember – although we all want to be the whizz kid on the block rather than the new kid on the block, strive for progress not perfection and enjoy the journey.