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An introduction to the Cambridge English: First and First for Schools update for 2015

This presentation was given on Methodology Day on 18 April 2014 by Tatiana Polovinkina.
"A Chinese proverb says, “When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills”. Yes, there have been more updates to one of the most popular exams but there is no need to panic; in fact, there are all the reasons to be enthusiastic and embrace this change. In our session we will
* analyse the update to Cambridge English: First and First for Schools for 2015 providing a brief rationale for the revision
* outline the new structure of the exam, focusing on the papers that have undergone the biggest change
* highlight continuity and teaching implications.
We will also discuss whether/how we may need to adjust our teaching to meet the new exam specifications and ensure our students’ success in the exam."

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An introduction to the Cambridge English: First and First for Schools update for 2015

  1. 1. © UCLES 2013 An introduction to the Cambridge English: First update for 2015
  2. 2. © UCLES 2013 Aims of this seminar • to introduce the update to Cambridge English: First for 2015 • to outline the changes to the exam, while highlighting continuity and teaching implications • to provide a rationale for the revision
  3. 3. © UCLES 2013 The CEFR
  4. 4. © UCLES 2013 Level B2 ‘Level B2 is required in everyday written and spoken situations, and achieving a certificate at this level proves that a candidate is becoming skilled in English.’
  5. 5. © UCLES 2013 Can Do statements Reading Writing • CAN scan texts for relevant information • CAN read the media for information quickly and with good understanding • CAN write a simple report of a factual nature and begin to evaluate, advise, etc. • CAN express opinions and give reasons Speaking Listening • CAN keep up a conversation on a fairly wide range of topics • CAN check that all instructions are understood • CAN follow a talk on a familiar topic • CAN ask for factual information and understand the answer
  6. 6. © UCLES 2013 Candidature Cambridge English: First is aimed at learners who want to: • start working in an English-speaking environment • study at an upper-intermediate level, such as foundation or pathway courses • live independently in an English-speaking country.
  7. 7. © UCLES 2013 Why choose a Cambridge English exam? Quality: • extensive programme of research and evaluation • continuous monitoring of marking and grading • internationally recognised ISO 9001:2008 standard for quality management • accredited by Ofqual
  8. 8. © UCLES 2013 Five principles • Validity • Reliability • Impact • Practicality • Quality
  9. 9. © UCLES 2013 Purpose The purpose of the project was to revise Cambridge English: First in order to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of candidates, teachers, centres and other users in terms of content and length.
  10. 10. © UCLES 2013 Aims To ensure the updated examination: • is suitable for use for further education study purposes • is suitable for use for higher education foundation or pathway courses • is suitable for use for work or career enhancement purposes • retains appropriate and specific testing focuses for each paper • is thoroughly validated and reflects the most up-to-date methodological approach to communicative language testing • is more user-friendly in terms of its length.
  11. 11. © UCLES 2013 Stages of the process 1) Data collection 2) Development of exam specifications 3) Production of examination support materials
  12. 12. © UCLES 2013 Key changes made • a reduction of the number of papers from five to four • a reduction in the total assessment time from about 4 hours to about 3 hours 30 minutes
  13. 13. © UCLES 2013 Timings of papers 1 hour 15 minutes 14 minutes 1 hour 20 minutes 40 minutes Reading and Use of English Speaking Writing Listening = 3 hours 30 minutes
  14. 14. © UCLES 2013 Shared features • Text-based tasks • Similar strategies needed • Pre-printed answer sheets used
  15. 15. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 1
  16. 16. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 2
  17. 17. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 3
  18. 18. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 4
  19. 19. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 5
  20. 20. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 6
  21. 21. © UCLES 2013 Reading and Use of English Part 7
  22. 22. © UCLES 2013 Writing Part 1
  23. 23. © UCLES 2013 Speaking paper quiz Match these numbers to the questions: 1 2 2 or 3 4 14 1) How many minutes does the Speaking paper last? 2) How many candidates take the test together? 3) How many examiners are there? 4) How many parts does the Speaking paper have? 5) How many minutes is the ‘long turn’ in Part 2? 14 2 or 3 2 4 1
  24. 24. © UCLES 2013 Speaking Part 3 task Interlocutor: Now, I’d like you to talk about something together for about 2 minutes. I’d like you to imagine that a town wants more tourists to visit. Here are some ideas they’re thinking about and a question for you to discuss. First you have some time to look at the task. Now, talk to each other about why these ideas would attract more tourists to the town.
  25. 25. © UCLES 2013 Aims of this seminar • to introduce the update to Cambridge English: First for 2015 • to outline the changes to the exam, while highlighting continuity and teaching implications • to provide a rationale for the revision
  26. 26. © UCLES 2013 Teaching Support website • Over 1 million visits • 100,000 registered teachers • 500,000 downloads • Lots of features and information to support teachers www.cambridgeenglish.org/teach
  27. 27. © UCLES 2013 New microsite for revised exams • Information about all the changes • Videos, specifications, sample papers, teaching tips, classroom activities teachingsupport.cambridgeenglish.org
  28. 28. © UCLES 2013 • Courses Earn a certificate from Cambridge. • Webinars Interact with expert trainers. • Knowledge Articles with industry-leading ideas. Join at www.cambridgeenglishteacher.org Online Professional Development
  29. 29. © UCLES 2013 Further information Cambridge English Language Assessment 1 Hills Road, Cambridge, CB1 2EU, United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)1223 553997 Fax: +44 (0)1223 553621 Keep up to date with what’s new via the website: www.cambridgeenglish.orgwww.cambridgeenglish.org For important information about Cambridge English exams: www.cambridgeenglish.org/helpwww.cambridgeenglish.org/help
  30. 30. © UCLES 2013 Thank you! Authorised Cambridge ESOL Centre BKC-IH 8(495) 604 4584 exams@bkc.ru BKC-IH Teacher Training Centre 8(495) 234 0314 t-training@bkc.ru BKC-IH Moscow 8 (495) 737 5225 www.bkc.ru

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