Lessons > Secondary education II > Cambridge Courses CAE and FCE

Certificate courses in English for students in grade 11

Goal: Passing the corresponding Cambridge examinations

The Cambridge ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) exams are recognized around the world by educational institutions and employers as proof of ability to use English. The certificates are valid for an unlimited period. Every year, more than 2 million candidates in 130 countries are taking Cambridge exams. Many universities abroad will accept FCE or CAE certificates as admission criteria in order to be accepted into a (partial) course of study. German educational authorities recommend taking Cambridge exams as an extra qualification possibility. Such a language certificate is also beneficial for those applying for British and American studies at German universities.


The levels of the Cambridge ESOL exams correspond to the reference levels of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). The CAE exam is targeted at Level C1 of the CEFR - the second highest of all possible levels; the FCE exam is targeted at Level B2. Here is a short description of both levels:

  CAE (C1) FCE (B2)
Listening/Speaking Can contribute effectively to meetings and seminars within own area of work or keep up a casual conversation with a good degree of fluency, coping with abstract expressions. Can follow or give a talk on a familiar topic or keep up a conversation on a fairly wide range of topics.
Reading Can read quickly enough to cope with an academic course, to read the media for information or to understand non-standard correspondence. Can scan texts for relevant information, and understand detailed instructions or advice.
Writing Can prepare/draft professional correspondence, take reasonably accurate notes in meetings or write an essay which shows an ability to communicate. Can make notes while someone is talking or write a letter including non-standard requests.

At our school:

Friedrich Schiller Gymnasium has been offering CAE and FCE courses since 2007 giving our students the chance to get prepared for the corresponding exams with the help and support of experienced English teachers. Students from grade 11 may attend such an optional course with two lessons per week in the afternoon, in which they gather the necessary knowledge to take the Cambridge exams. The exams are not conducted by teachers from our school but by examiners from official Test Centers authorized by Cambridge University. The written part of the exam is in fact corrected and assessed in England.


Like in the previous school years, students willing to learn have once again committed themselves to making a success of this examination. Just like their predecessors they attend the preparatory course voluntarily. We wish all of them a lot of perseverance and much success!

Please note:

All Cambridge ESOL test centers must meet the defined standards concerning the conduct of the exams and their professional integrity. At the moment of registration, the candidates conclude a contract with the test center. Joining a course does not automatically imply exam registration. This needs to be done separately and also includes paying the costs of about 190,- Euros. Taking part in a preparatory course cannot guarantee to pass the exam, just like attending our school doesn’t guarantee to pass the finals. However, taking part in a course is absolutely free of charge.

You can find further information and the latest examination dates of the test centers at: