Understanding CEFR Young Learners English (YLE) YLE: Test Composition
Key English Test (KET) Preliminary English Test (PET) What's in the KET?


The Key English Test (KET)

This is a test at the A2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).  Out of a possible total score of 100, the KET test can be used to determine three separate CEFR levels:

      Description: http://www.vantage-siam.com/fckupload/upload/image/favicon2.JPG   A1 Level - a score of 45 to 69
      Description: http://www.vantage-siam.com/fckupload/upload/image/favicon2.JPG   A2 Level - a score of 70 to 89
      Description: http://www.vantage-siam.com/fckupload/upload/image/favicon2.JPG   B1 Level - a score of 90 or more





What's in the Tests?

The KET exam is made up of three separate tests that assess all four language skills. The tables below detail these tests and what you should know to successfully take them.  


The Speaking Test

Exam Details

What’s in the Exam?

 What do I need to be able to do?




Speaking Exam


10-12 minutes


25% of the marks for the exam







The Speaking test has two parts.  

In the first part the interlocutor asks the candidate ‘getting to know you’ type questions. 

In the second part candidates talk to each other to get/give some information. 

You can watch a video of an actual KET Speaking Exam here.


You need to be able to:  

answer questions about yourself 

read a card and ask your partner some questions to get missing information 

• read a card and answer your partner’s questions


The Reading and Writing Test  


Exam Details

What’s in the Exam?

What do I need to be able to do?




Reading & Writing Exam


70 minutes


50% of the marks for the exam







The Reading & Writing test has nine parts and the tasks include:  

matching sentences to notices 

• multiple-choice questions on a text 

• multiple-choice responses to something someone says 

• a multiple-matching question 

• a spelling task 

• an open-cloze task (a text with gaps – you need to fill in the gaps) 

• an information-transfer task 

• a guided writing task.



 Some of the things you need to be able to do are:  

understand real-world notices 

• read and choose the correct word 

• read and choose the correct answer 

• put a conversation in the correct order   

• spell words correctly 

• choose the correct words to complete a text  

• complete an email/letter with missing words  

• complete a form with important information

• write a short note, email or postcard



 The Listening Test 


Exam Details

What’s in the Exam?

What do I need to be able to do?





Listening Exam


25 minutes


25% of the marks for the exam







The Listening paper has five parts and the tasks include

answering multiple-choice questions on short listening texts

matching a list of nouns to people while listening

answering multiple-choice questions on a conversation

• filling in missing words on a form while listening to one or two people speaking.



You need to be able to: 

listen for important information in short and long conversations and monologues

listen and write down important information and spell words correctly.

You don’t need to pass all three tests to pass the whole exam.

For example, if you do very well in Reading & Writing and Listening, but you don’t do so well in Speaking it is still possible to pass the exam.


Free Vantage Practice Tools

We have practice tests and also tutorial videos on this page. The videos will show you how the computer-based are structured. There are also links to actual KET practice exams. 

We also have a video of an actual Speaking Test on the same page. 

Here you can see what a candidate is asked and your can also read the Speaking Examiner Comments which discuss what the candidates did right and ways they could have done better.


Need Help? Vantage Offers a Prep Class and Specialized Courses

Starting every Monday, we offer a 3-day Prep Class that's designed to optimize your performance on the KET exam. This course also comes with Key eLearing - additional online learning materials and actual KET practice tests so you can keep practicing at home right up until your exam test date.

We also offer specialized course that are tailored to address the individual needs of those who need help in getting to an A1 level in English proficiency.



As a first step in determining the level and duration of any training necessary to successfuly sit the KET exam, we recommend taking our Key Placement Test.

You can learn more about that exam here.






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