Learn French in France

French language tests and exams

Nationally recognised diplomas DCL University diploma of French studies Proficiency tests Paris-Sorbonne University Diplomas Paris Ile-de-France Chamber of Commerce and Industry exams Access to the French nationality : certifications Other French tests and certifications

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages

The CEFR - a Council of Europe initiative - is the reference document that describes and standardises language proficiency levels for the purposes of developing standards, tests and certification in the language field.

Nationally recognised diplomas

DILF, DELF and DALF

Delivered by the French Ministry of Education and Higher Education, DILF, DELF and DALF are diplomas based on the 6 levels of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. They are independent and valid without any time limit. Internationally recognized, they can be passed in more than 1000 examination centers worldwide.

DILF : Diplôme initial de langue française
- Audience : Beginners and newcomers in France
- Level: A1.1

DELF - Diplôme d’études en Langue Française
- Audience : all public
- Levels : A1-A2-B1-B2

DALF - Diplôme approfondi de langue française
- Audience : adults in a university or professional setting
- Levels : C1-C2

Resources to prepare for DELF and DALF
- Document to download

DELF-DALF : 4 options for specific audiences

DELF Prim
- Children aged 8 to 12, in primary education

DELF junior
- Adolescents in school education

DELF scolaire
- Adolescents in school education

DELF Pro
- Persons undergoing vocational integration or promotion

DCL

DCL

Delivered by the Ministry of National Education, the DCL - Diplôme de compétence en langue - is a national vocational diploma specifically for adults.

It meets the needs of the economic world and is presented in two versions :

  • DCL FLE for the usual French - levels A2 to C1
  • DCL FP for professional French - levels A1 and A2.

University diploma of French studies

DUEF - Diplôme Universitaire d’Etudes Françaises validates the language training provided in university FLE centres for levels A1 to C2 of the European reference framework for languages.

From level B2 onwards, the training accentuates the university orientation, the objective being to allow foreign students to continue their studies in a French higher education course.

Recognized by many universities as an attestation of the level of language required to enroll in a department.

Some centres also offer a complete training in French on University Objectives, which is validated by an DU F.O.U.

Find out more :
Diplôme Universitaire d’Etudes Françaises
- Document to download.

Proficiency tests

TCF - Test de Connaissance du Français
Delivered by the International Centre for Educational Studies
> General French language test for all non-francophone audiences who wish, for professional or personal reasons, to have their knowledge of French validated in a simple, reliable and fast way.

TEF - Test d’Évaluation de Français
Delivered by the CCIP - Paris Ile de France Chamber of Commerce and Industry
> Test recognised in particular by National Education. Students wishing to enroll in an undergraduate program at a French university can take the TEF exams.

DCL FLE - Diplôme de Compétence en Langue
Delivered by the Ministry of Education
Designed specifically for adult and professional audiences.

Language training under the Republican Integration Contract
Learning French is a prerequisite for integration into French society. Access to French nationality requires the acquisition of Level B1 oral knowledge of French.

Read more on the OFII website - Office Français de l’Immigration et de l’Intégration

Paris-Sorbonne University Diplomas

Since 1961, Sorbonne Université has offered 5 diplomas corresponding to 5 levels of language proficiency and knowledge of French culture. These diplomas are:

The Intermediate French Language Certificate B1: threshold level

The Certificat pratique de langue française - module "Compréhension et expression" B2: entrance examination to the University in Bachelor’s degree (excluding DAP), Master’s degree or Doctorate.

The Certificat pratique de langue française C1: exempts European Union nationals from the language test required at the Paris-Sorbonne University.

The Diploma in French Language and Literature C2: dispenses with any language test for registration at the Paris-Sorbonne University.

The Higher Diploma of French Studies "C3": reserved for holders of the French baccalaureate or equivalent.

Information and contact :
Sorbonne University FLE Examination Centre

Paris Ile-de-France Chamber of Commerce and Industry exams

The professional French diplomas of the Paris Ile-de-France Chamber of Commerce and Industry - are intended for all those who wish to validate their ability to communicate in French in a professional context.

The A2 and B1 Dfps: generalists, are intended for all those who want to start in professional French.

Level B1, C1 and C2 Pfds: provide the ability to master the general know-how common to all forms of professional communication

Information and contact :
CCIP - Le Français des affaires

The CCIP Professional French Diplomas cover levels A1 to C1, in 7 specific areas of activity: Business - Science and Technology - Law - Health - International Relations - Tourism, Hospitality, Catering - Fashion.

Access to the French nationality : certifications

The law of 7 March 2016 on the law of foreigners and its implementing decree provide that foreigners who wish to settle permanently on the French territory must justify level A2 - with reference to the European Framework for Languages - written and oral for issuance of residence permit.

Access to French nationality, on the other hand, requires the attainment of the level B1 oral knowledge of French.

Any person who has to prove his or her level of French in order to acquire French nationality must therefore prove that he or she has the required level of knowledge of the national language, namely B1, but only orally: “take part in a conversation” - “express oneself orally continuously”...

Applicants must produce either a school diploma - a college certificate, CAP, BEP - or a certificate of language level issued by a certifying body, private or public, approved by the French Ministry of the Interior.

French certifications approved by the Ministry of the Interior:
TCF - French Knowledge Test issued by the International Centre for Educational Studies
TEF - Test d’Évaluation de Français issued by the Paris Ile de France Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Find out more:
French learning arrangements for foreigners


Other French tests and certifications

Le Certificat Voltaire
A level certification in spelling.

La Certification Le Robert
The only global certification in French language : spelling, grammar, expression and vocabulary.

LevelTEL
Evaluation of oral communication level in French by telephone. For companies and for private individuals.