You are here: Language Travel Guide : Official language exams : English : BEC

BEC

BEC (Business English Certificate)

The BEC exams are designed for people who wish to test their knowledge of Business English. The BEC is especially aimed at those who already have good knowledge of business jargon or those who are starting to work in business and wish to expand their knowledge.

Choose the BEC exam if :

  • You are preparing to start or continue with a career in business
  • You already have very good knowledge of the English language
  • You wish to evaluate your knowledge of Business English

What does the BEC exam consist of ?

The 3 levels:

BEC Preliminary :

1. Reading comprehension and written expression (90 minutes)
For the reading comprehension exam, you will be asked to complete seven comprehension tasks such as multiple choice questions, making pairs, filling in cloze tests, and filling out forms. The reading comprehension exams accounts for 25% of the overall grade. For the written expression exam, you wull have to carry out two tasks, which are the writing of an internal communication dossier to a typical company and the writing of a company communication dossier. The written expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

2. Listening comprehension (40 minutes)
This part tests your skills in understanding texts such as monologues, dialogies, interviews, discussions, telephone conversations and answering machine messages. You will be tested on four different points. The listening comprehension part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

3. Oral expression (12 minutes)
The oral expression exam generally takes place with two examiners and another candidate. During the exam, each candidate must answer the questions asked by the examiner, make a small presentation of around one minute, and take part in a group activity with other participants. The oral expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

BEC Vantage :

1. Reading comprehension (60 minutes)
You will be tested on five different exercises such as multiple choice questions, matching words/expressions and their meanings, filling in cloze tests and correcting mistakes, This accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

2. Written expression (45 minutes)
For the written expression exam, you will have to carry out two tasks, which are the writing of an internal communication dossier to a typical company and the writing of a report, plan or letter with a professional aim. The written expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

3. Listening comprehension (40 minutes)
This part tests your skills in understanding texts such as monologues, dialogues, interviews, discussions, telephone conversations and answering machine messages. You will be tested on four different points. The listening comprehension part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

4. Oral expression (14 minutes)
The oral expression exam generally takes place with two examiners and anotehr candidate. During the exam, each candidate must answer the questions asked by the examiner, make a short presentation of around one minute and take part in a group activity with other participants. The oral expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

BEC Higher :

1. Reading comprehension (60 minutes)
You will be tested on six different elements such as multiple choice questions, matching words/expressions with their meanings, filling in cloze tests and correcting mistakes. This accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

2. Written expression (70 minutes)
For the written expression exam, you will have to carry out two tasks, which are the writing of a short report based in graphic data and the writing of a report, plan or letter with a professional aim. The written expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

3. Listening comprehension (40 minutes)
This part tests your skills in understanding texts such as monologues, dialogues, interviews, discussions, telephone conversations and answering machine messages. You will be tested on three different points. The listening comprehension part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

4.Oral expression (16 minutes)
The oral expression exam generally takes place with two examiners and another candidate. During the exam, each candidate must answer the questions asked by the examiner, make a short presentation of around one minute, take part in a group activity with other participants. The oral expression part accounts for 25% of the overall grade.

To find out the exact dates of the BEC exams and to get more detailed information about the exams, take a look at the Cambridge ESOL website.