How Good is Your English? – Test Yourself

Test yourself with this check list from Berlitz, where I taught for a year. I still use this list myself to see what new students can do and what they can’t do.

It works like this: go through the list. Think what you can do in English. If you get to the end of the list, it means you are at native English speaking level. If you are at the beginning, you are a beginner. Most learners of English will get to somewhere in the middle. You will be able to see what you’ll still need to work on.


Tick the things you can do in English:

□ Introduce a colleague, a family member, or myself

□ Ask and answer simple questions about personal details

□ Make simple requests

□ Ask for and give directions

□ Order a drink or meal

□ Make or change an appointment

□ Make hotel, airplane or train reservations

□ Shop for everyday items such as toothpaste or a newspaper

□ Discuss clothes: colors, sizes and prices

□ Discuss food: meals and restaurants

□ Discuss work in general: the office, my qualifications, and responsibilities

□ Give simple instructions to subordinates or colleagues

□ Explain a problem, such as a scheduling conflict, and a possible solution

□ Invite someone to have a drink or go to a party

□ Express preferences, opinions, agreement/disagreement

□ Ask about someone’s health or condition

□ Ask for and give advice

□ Describe, discuss, and purchase equipment or services

□ Excuse myself for a delay or error

□ Manage personal and professional conversations

□ Ask and answer most routine work-related questions

□ Express sympathy and concern

□ Understand the content of most business meetings

□ Discuss the quality of a product, service, presentation or event

□ Express my feelings and ideas effectively

□ Use expressions and slang words

□ Manage most social and professional situations effectively

□ Participate actively in business meetings

□ Give detailed accounts of experiences and events, describing feelings and reactions

□ Interact comfortably with any number of native speakers of English

□ Express my opinions during a discussion

□ Understand and explain detailed information

□ Deal with most professional situations: e.g. manage an office

□ Use language as a means for learning in other academic or professional areas

□ Deliver professional presentations

□ Conduct meetings

□ Follow complex story lines and lines of argument

□ Understand and discuss complex concepts of a general or work-related nature

□ Function fully in all routine daily activities and aspects of work

□ Understand and use a wide range of idiomatic expressions, slang, contractions or shortened words quite naturally

□ Give a spontaneous presentation or report, or participate in a debate on a national issue

□ Understand and use cultural references and humor in a way that evidences a deep comprehension of the society in which English is spoken

□ Understand and use speech at a very high analytical, theoretical, philosophical, emotional, and/or critical level

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