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Examination for the
Certificate of
Proficiency in

2006 Information



All correspondence and mailings regarding the

ECPE testing program should be addressed to:

English Language Institute, ECPE Testing Program

University of Michigan
401 East Liberty, Suite 350
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104-2298 U.S.A.

Phone: (001-734) 647-0456

Fax: (001-734) 615-6586
E-mail: elicertif@umich.edu
Web site: http://www.lsa.umich.edu/eli

© 2005 by the English Language Institute, University of Michigan. This document may be reproduced or reprinted, in whole or in part,
without permission so long as the source is clearly acknowledged. This document or any reproductions may not be sold.

The Regents of the University of Michigan: David A. Brandon, Laurence B. Deitch, Olivia P. Maynard, Rebecca McGowan, Andrea Fischer
Newman, Andrew C. Richner, S. Martin Taylor, Katherine E. White, Mary Sue Coleman (ex officio).

Overview of the ECPE ............................................2

Preparing for the ECPE ..........................................2

Preliminary Test Format..........................................3

ECPE Final Test Format .........................................4

Test Takers with Disabilities ....................................5

Scoring ...................................................................6

Receiving Results...................................................6

Rescoring ...............................................................7

MELAB Conversion of ECPE Results ....................7

Administration & Test Centers ................................8

Frequently Asked Questions ................................ 11

ECPE Sample Sections .................................. 12-21

Oral Interaction ...........................................13

Listening .....................................................14

Grammar ....................................................16

Cloze ..........................................................17

Vocabulary ..................................................18

Reading ......................................................19


Answer Key ................................................21


The Examination for the Certificate of Proficiency in The University of Michigan English Language
English (ECPE) is a standardized advanced-level Institute does not recommend any specific course of
English as a foreign language (EFL) examination. It study to be taken in preparation for the ECPE. The
is developed and scored by the English Language best preparation is through the general study and
Institute of the University of Michigan (ELI-UM) and use of English.
is administered by over 120 authorized test centers
around the world. Examinees may also find it useful to consult the
sample test items at the end of this booklet in order
The content and difficulty of the ECPE reflect the to familiarize themselves with the format of the test
English language skills required of a university-level items. In addition, many different publishers produce
adult. The ECPE certificate is useful as evidence of study guides for the ECPE. A list of preparation
advanced proficiency in the English language for materials can be found on the English Language
education, employment, career advancement, and Institute Web site.
business purposes. The ECPE certificate, or the
conversion of an ECPE result to a MELAB score, www.lsa.umich.edu/eli
is accepted by some universities as evidence of
proficiency in English. See the MELAB Conversion Some local language schools offer courses
section of this booklet for additional information. specifically for learners wishing to prepare for the
The ECPE certificate is valid for the lifetime of the ECPE, or may recommend a course of study for
recipient. learners wishing to take the ECPE. Contact your
local test center for information about language
ELI-UM is committed to excellence in its tests, courses in your area.
which are developed in accordance with the highest
standards in educational measurement. All parts
of the examination are written following specified
guidelines, and items are pretested to ensure that
they function properly. ELI-UM works closely with
test centers to ensure that its tests are administered
in a way that is fair and accessible to examinees and
that the ECPE is open to all people who wish to take
the exam, regardless of the school they attend.

The ECPE tests all four skill areas: listening, reading,

writing, and speaking.

The ECPE consists of a preliminary test, which is used Preliminary test scores are not used in determining
as a screening device for the final exam, and a final final ECPE results. Only results from the final
test. ELI-UM recommends that test takers first take ECPE will be used in determining whether or not an
the preliminary test in order to become familiar with individual will receive a certificate.
the exam contents and to estimate how they would
be expected to perform on the final ECPE. Based The preliminary test does not contain listening,
upon ELI-UM research, examinees who answer writing, or oral interaction sections. The following
about two-thirds (66%) of the items correctly on the chart describes the format and content of the ECPE
preliminary test stand a good chance of passing the Preliminary Test.
final ECPE. ELI-UM recommends that examinees
who answer at least 23 of the 35 preliminary test
items correctly be permitted to sit for the final ECPE.
Examinees should contact their local test center for
specific information regarding the ECPE Preliminary
Test in their country.

Sections Total Time Description Number of Items

Grammar, 30 minutes Grammar (multiple choice) 10

Cloze, An incomplete sentence is followed by a choice of
Vocabulary, words or phrases to complete it. Only one choice is
Reading grammatically correct.

Cloze (multiple choice) 10

After reading a passage from which words have been
removed, examinees must choose one of four words
that best fill a missing word slot in terms of grammar
and meaning.

Vocabulary (multiple choice) 10

An incomplete sentence is followed by a choice of
words to complete it. Only one word has the correct

Reading (multiple choice) 5

A reading passage is followed by comprehension


The following chart describes the format and content

of the final ECPE. At the end of this booklet, you will
find sample items and/or additional information for
each section of the final test.
Section Time Description Number of Items

Speaking 15 minutes The examineeʼs general ability in spoken English is --

assessed in a face-to-face oral interaction with a local
oral examiner.

Listening 35–40 minutes Part I (multiple choice) 50

A short recorded conversation is accompanied
by three printed statements. Examinees choose
the statement that means about the same thing
as what was heard, or that is true based upon the

Part II (multiple choice)

A recorded question is accompanied by three printed
responses. Examinees choose the appropriate
response to the question.

Part III (multiple choice)

Three recorded talks, such as those that might be
heard on the radio, are each followed by recorded
comprehension questions. Examinees choose the
correct answer from the printed answer choices.

Grammar, Cloze, 75 minutes Grammar (multiple choice) 40

Vocabulary, An incomplete sentence is followed by a choice of
Reading words or phrases to complete it. Only one choice is
grammatically correct.

Cloze (multiple choice) 20

After reading a passage from which words have been
removed, examinees must choose one of four words
that best fill a missing word slot in terms of grammar
and meaning.

Vocabulary (multiple choice) 40

An incomplete sentence is followed by a choice of
words to complete it. Only one word has the correct

Reading (multiple choice) 20

Four reading passages are followed by
comprehension questions.

Writing 30 minutes Examinees write an essay based upon one of two --

topic choices.

TEST TAKERS WITH DISABILITIES Qualified professionals include physicians, school
psychologists, psychometricians, and psychiatrists.
Classroom teachers or parents are not considered to
ELI-UM is committed to ensuring that every examinee be qualified to make a disability determination.
be able to demonstrate his or her language ability
under circumstances that are fair and equitable. Score reporting and certificate modifications
For this reason, ELI-UM allows exam applicants When there is credible evidence that the scores from
with disabilities to request special accommodations. a modified examination are comparable to scores
These accommodations may include changes in the from a standard administration, no special indicator
format or the administration of the test. is placed on the certificate. When such evidence
is lacking, information about the nature of the
Types of disabilities usually granted modification will be provided, if permitted by law, to
accommodations: help test users interpret test results accurately.
• Visual impairment or blindness
• Hearing impairment or deafness In cases where a section of the examination is not
• Motor impairment given (e.g., the listening section is not administered
• Psychological and learning disabilities because the examinee is profoundly deaf), ELI-
UM will issue a modified certificate. The modified
Arrangements that can be requested: certificate will indicate which sections of the exam
• Wheelchair access were taken and passed.
• Extended testing time
• Additional rest breaks
• Reader
• Scribe
• Recorder to mark answers
• Headphones
• Alternate test formats (e.g., Braille, large
• Alternate response formats (e.g., computer
for writing section)

How and when to apply

Examinees should apply directly to the local test
center as far in advance as possible from the test
date. For special materials, such as Braille or large-
print exams, the examinee should apply at least
3 months before the test date. For administrative
modifications, such as extended time, reader, or
scribe, the examinee should apply at least 1 month
before the test date. The test center representative
will inform the examinee before the exam about what
accommodations have been granted.

Required documentation
Documentation from a licensed or certified
professional who is qualified to evaluate the
examineeʼs disability should be submitted to the
examination center in advance of the actual test
date, at the time when the examinee registers
to take the exam. Individuals with disabilities are
defined by the American Psychological Association
as persons possessing a physical, mental, or
developmental impairment that substantially
limits one or more of their major life activities.


The listening and grammar, cloze, vocabulary, and ELI-UM does not report results directly to examinees.
reading (GCVR) sections of the ECPE are scored After all exams in an administration period have
by computer at ELI-UM using Item Response been administered and scored, ELI-UM reports
Theory (IRT). In this method, more credit is given examination results to the test centers. Results are
for answering a difficult question correctly than for reported as Honors, Pass, or Fail only. In addition,
answering an easy one correctly. for those candidates who failed, the section(s) failed
will be indicated. Actual numerical scores are not
The oral interaction and writing sections are graded reported. The local test center notifies examinees of
according to scales established by ELI-UM. The their results.
oral interaction rating is assigned by the local oral
examiner. The writing section ratings are assigned After results have been reported, ELI-UM sends
by trained raters at ELI-UM. If a rater assigns a certificates to the test centers for distribution to
failing score to the writing task, and the failing score successful candidates.
would affect the examineeʼs final results, a second or
third rater reevaluates the writing paper to determine
the final writing score. Scoring rubrics for the oral The ECPE is a secure test. The ELI-UM reserves the
interaction and writing sections can be found in the right to decline to score the ECPE or invalidate ECPE
back of this booklet. results under the following circumstances. No exam
fees will be refunded and the examinee will not be
allowed to take the exam again.
Examinees who obtain passing scores on all four
sections of the ECPE are awarded a Certificate • An examinee misrepresents her/himself, e.g.,
of Proficiency. Those with high scores on all four examinee appearance or signature does not
sections are awarded a Certificate of Proficiency match picture or signature on ID.
with Honors.
• There is sufficient evidence that the handwriting
The table below provides additional information on the ECPE composition does not match the
on how results are determined. Using IRT, ability examineeʼs signature.
estimates are calculated based on the examineeʼs
• The examiner discovers evidence of examinee
responses to all test questions. The ability estimate
misconduct during the ECPE administration,
required to pass a section, or to receive a high score, including, but not limited to, copying answers from
remains the same from year to year. The figures another examinee, talking with another examinee
shown in the following table for the listening and during the test administration, transferring ECPE
GCVR sections represent approximate percentage test information to any external media, referring to
equivalents of the passing scores. previously prepared notes or aids (test preparation
books, study guides, dictionaries, etc., are not
allowed), creating a disturbance, or neglecting to
follow the examinerʼs instructions.
Section Honors Pass Fail
• There is an unusual discrepancy in the examineeʼs
performance and/or pattern of answers across
Oral Interaction 4 3–2 1
test sections.
Listening above above below
90% 60–65% 60–65%

GCVR above above below

90% 60–65% 60–65%

Writing A B-C D


ELI-UM offers a new service to examinees who The cost of this service is U.S. $20. While making the
wish to have their exams rescored. Examinees can request is recommended at the time of registration,
request rescoring within three months after test examinees can request result conversion up to two
results have been issued. ELI-UM staff will reread years after taking the ECPE. Converted scores are
and reevaluate the examineeʼs composition and valid for two years.
rescore the computer-scanned answer sheet. The
examinee will receive a Pass/Fail report by section.
The fee for this service is U.S. $30. If rescoring
results in a final pass for someone who had failed
upon the first scoring, the examineeʼs rescoring fee
will be refunded. Examinees who wish to apply to
have their exams rescored need to complete the
Rescoring Request form (from the web address
below) and mail or fax it to the ELI-UM with required



Examinees who plan to apply to educational

institutions that require scores can have their ECPE
results converted to a MELAB score.

The Michigan English Language Assessment Battery

(MELAB) is another English language proficiency
examination administered by ELI-UM, and it is used
by students applying to universities in North America.
The MELAB is accepted for admissions purposes at
over 100 institutions. Some schools accept the ECPE
without MELAB conversion. For a list of universities
that accept the ECPE or MELAB conversions, see
our Web site:


Universities not on the list of accepting institutions

may still accept MELAB scores. Examinees should
contact ELI-UM for details.

Examinees who wish to have their ECPE results

converted may apply when they register for the
ECPE. To have an ECPE result converted to
a MELAB score, the examinee must submit an
application to ELI-UM for ECPE/MELAB conversion.
The application is available at our Web site. The
institution and the examinee will each receive a copy
of the MELAB score report.

COCHABAMBA Avenida Major Nicacio, 1907
Centro Boliviano Americano 14401-273 Franca, SP
A new ECPE is administered once a year from 25 de Mayo No N-0365 (16) 3724-4300
November to April, depending on the country. The cost Casilla 1399
Cochabamba GOIANIA
of the ECPE varies from country to country, depending CCBEU
(4) 425-1225
on the local economy. The fee is paid directly to the Ave T-5 N. 441 Setor Bueno
test center. For specific information about test dates LA PAZ 74230-040 Goiania, GO
Centro Boliviano Americano (62) 533-1313
and fees in your area, contact your local test center. Parque Zenon Iturralde, 121 Av
You may only take the ECPE in the country in which Arce LONDRINA
you are a resident. Casilla 12024
La Paz Rua Joao Candido, 1114
(2) 342-582 86010-001 Londrina, PR
Following is a list of all current Michigan certificate (43) 3324-5372
test centers. Contact the testing center nearest you SANTA CRUZ
Centro Boliviano Americano MANAUS
to find out if and when the ECPE is offered in your C/Cochabamba 66 ICBEU
area. Casilla 510 Av Joaquim Nabuco, 1286 CX 61
Santa Cruz 69020-030 Manaus, AM
(3) 334-2299 (92) 232-5919
SAN FRANCISCO CORDOBA Centro Boliviano Americano CCBEU
ISFICANA Suipacha 738 Rua Coronel José Braz, 77 -
Geronimo Del Barco 2259 Tarija Centro
Maipu 672
San Francisco, Cordoba 2400 (4) 664-1727 17501-570 Marilia, SP
Buenos Aires, C1006 ACH
(356) 442-4093 (14) 424-4110
(11) 5382-1500
Asociacion de Cultura Saint Johnʼs CCBNA
Av. Cordoba 232 Este Rua Felix da Cunha, 914
Escalada 1567 CCBEU
San Juan, San Juan 5400 96010-000 Pelotas, RS
Comodoro Rivadavia Trav. Padre Eutiquio, 1309
(264) 220-580 (21) 51-225-6426
Chubut 9000 66023-710 Belem, PA
(297) 446-6311 (91) 242-9455
San Martin 2293 Rua Riachuelo, 1257
Santa Fe, Santa Fe 3000 90010-270 Porto Alegre, RS
Dean Funes 477 Rua de Bahia, 1723 Lourdes
(342) 453-7597 (51) 3225-2255
Cordoba, Cordoba 5000 30160-011 Belo Horizonte, MG
(351) 421-1131 (31) 3271-7255
24 De Septiembre 382 Av Rosa e Silva, 1510 Aflitos
ICAMDP Casa Thomas Jefferson
Santiago del Estero 4200 52020-220 Recife, PE
25 de Mayo 3773 ASA Norte
(385) 421-3653 (81) 3427-0200
Mar del Plata 7600 SGAN 606, Bloco B
(223) 451-5316 70840-060 Brasilia, DF
(61) 340-4216
Av Salta 581 Rua General Osorio, 768
San Miguel de Tucuman 4000 14010-000 Ribeirao Preto, SP
C/Chile 987 CCBEU-Campinas
(381) 430-3070 (16) 625-4449
Mendoza, Mendoza 5500 Av Julio de Mesquita, 606 Cambui
(261) 423-6271 13025-061 Campinas, SP
Laprida 319 A.A.I.E. Aamerika Institut IBEU-Campos 690 - 6th fl.
Parana, Entre Rios 3100 Operngasse 4 Praca Sao Salvador, 57 (Altos) Copacabana
(343) 431-9678 Vienna, A-1010 28000-000 Campos, RJ 22050-000 Rio de Janeiro, RJ
(1) 512-7720 (22) 2722-4664 (21) 3816-9494
C/ Buenos Aires 934 CCBEU ACBEU
Rosario, Santa Fe 2000 BRUSSELS Rua Amintas de Barros, 99 Av Professor Magalhaes Netto,
(341) 421-7664 The Scandinavian School of Brus- 80060-200 Curitiba, PR 1520 Stiep
sels (41) 320-4704 41820-140 Salvador, Bahia
SALTA Square dʼArgenteuil 5 (71) 340-5400
C/ Santiago del Estero 865 (23) 357-0670 IBEU-CE
Salta, Salta 4400 Rua Nogueira Acioly, 891
(387) 431-4040 60110-140 Fortaleza, CE
(85) 4006-9941

SANTOS Ioannina
Rua Jorge Tibirica, 05 Kalabaka
11055-250 Santos, SP BARRANQUILLA Kalamata BOLOGNA
(13) 3281-3993 Centro Colombo Americano Karditsa Associazione Italo-Americana
Carrera 43 No. 51-95 Karpathos Via Belmeloro, 11
SAO JOSE DOS CAMPOS Barranquilla Kefalonia 40126 Bologna
ICBEU (5) 340-8549 Kerkyra (051) 262-825
Av Adhemar de Barros Korinthos
464 Vila Ady Anna BOGOTA Kos GENOVA
12243-610 Sao Jose dos Campos, Centro Colombo Americano Lamia ABC English
SP Calle 19 No. 2-49 Larissa Corso Torino 9/2 Sc. II
(12) 3941-4978 Bogota Lasithi 16129 Genova
(1) 334-7640 Limnos (010) 580-216
SAO LUIS Livadia
Rua Montanha Russa, 42 - Centro Inst de Ensenanza Ingles Ltda Mytelene American School of Milan
65010-400 Sao Luis, MA Carrera 37 No. 52-34 Nafpaktos 20090 Noverasco Di Opera
(98) 221-0118 Bucaramanga Nafplion Milan
(73) 643-7230 Nea Moudania (025) 300-001
Associacao Alumni MANIZALES Pireus NAPLES
Rua Ministro Rocha Azevedo, 413 Centro Colombo Americano Pirgos/Olympia American Studies Center Sequoia
01410-001 Sao Paulo, SP Calle 62, No. 24B-50 Poligiros Via Andrea dʼIsernia 36
(11) 3067-3503 Manizales, Caldas Preveza 80122 Naples
(68) 886-2597 Rethymnon (81) 660-562
Rua Coronel Oscar Porto, 208 Centro Colombo Americano Sparti The English Centre
Paraiso Carrera 45 No. 53-24 Syros Via Maggiore 147
04003-000 Sao Paulo, SP Apartado Aereo 8734 Tripoli 48100 Ravenna
(11) 3885-1022 Medellin Volos (44) 461-460
(4) 513-4444
CCBEU Anatolia College
Avenida Moreira Cesar, 124
ECUADOR Language & Testing Office
The British School
Via Nizza 49
18010-010 Sorocaba, SP Stephens Hall 00198 Rome
(15) 231-1212 Thessaloniki, Pylea 555-10 (85) 300-088
Benedict School of Languages
2310 398 369
Ed. Chiriboga 713 y Jorge Paez
Barrio La Concepcion
CCBEU Anatolia College administers the TURIN
Guaranis, 1775 ECPE in the following cities: International School of Turin /
(32) 246-2972
17605-050 Tupa, SP ACAT
(14) 441-1611 Alexandroupolis Vicolo Tiziano 10
EL SALVADOR Drama 10024 Moncalieri, Turin
VICOSA Edessa (011) 645-967
ICBEU Centro Cultural Salvadoreno Florina
Av. P.H. Rolfs, 424 - sala 04 Centro Av. Los Sisimiles Costado Giannitsa
36570-00 Vicosa, MG Norte de Metrocentro Grevena JORDAN
(31) 3891-1400 San Salvado Kastoria
(503) 260-3991 Katerini AMMAN
VITORIA Kavala Modern Language Center
IBEUV - Vitoria Kilkis PO Box 9086 Jabal Lweibdeh
GREECE Amman, 11191
Ruo Constante Sodré, 1052 Komotini
Praia do Canto Kozani 962-6-462-5582
29055-420 Vitoria, ES Hellenic American Union Naousa
(27) 3325-1231 22 Massalias St Orestiada LEBANON
Athens, 106 80 Ptolemaida
BULGARIA (210) 368-0000 Serres BEIRUT
Thessaloniki The American Language Center
SOFIA The Hellenic American Union Veria P. O. Box 113-5593
Bulgarian Academy of Sciences administers the ECPE in the Xanthi Hamra
Training Center following cities: Beirut, 1103 2050
4 Serdica Street GUATEMALA (961-1) 366-002
BG - 1000 Agrinion
Sofia, Belgrade Almyros Volou Instituto Guatemalteco Americano MACEDONIA (FYROM)
(2) 987 3167 Arta Ruta 1, 4-05 zona 4
Athens Guatemala City SKOPJE
CHILE Didimoteiho (502) 2338-5555 University of Skopje
Instituto Chileno Norte Americano Evosmos Educational Advising Center
de Cultura de Valparaiso Giannitsa Faculty of Philosophy
Calle Esmeralda 1069 Grevena Bul. Krste Misirkov bb
Valparaiso, Chile Halkida 1000 Skopje
56-32-450400 Hania, Crete 02-3124-104
MEXICO Harmon Hall School Puebla European Language Studies
Av Juarez #2108 Av. Giraldez 494 Edificio Edimburgo Plaza Nina,
Colonia La Paz Huancayo
Harmon Hall School Chihuahua Huelva 21003
Puebla, Puebla 72160 (64) 215-763
Plaza Vallarta #5710-2o Piso (959) 26-38-21
(22) 2-42-41-58
Chihuahua, Chihuahua 31160 MADRID
(614) 4-19-74-00 English Dept, International
Harmon Hall School Tapachula Avenida Angamos Oeste 120
(662) 2-60-41-10 Institute of Spain
Av. Central Ote. Lima 18
Prolongacion S/N (1) 242-6300 Calle Miguel Angel, 8
CUERNAVACA Madrid 28010
(962) 625-0240
Harmon Hall School Cuernavaca (913) 19-81-84
Av. Vincente Guerrero
Col. Lomas de la Selva VALENCIA
Harmon Hall School Torreon Apurimac 447
Cuernavaca, Mor Centro De Estudios
Blvd Constitucion #997 Oriente Piura
(777) 3173877 Norteamericano
Colonia Las Margaritas
Torreon, Coahuila 27130 TRUJILLO Calle Aparisi y Guijarro, 5 - 1ʼ
GUADALAJARA Valencia 46003
(871) 7-13-15-45 Centro Peruano Americano-
Harmon Hall School Guadalajara (963) 91-15-73
El Cultural Binational Center
Chimalhuacan #20-1er Piso
Ciudad del Sol
Zapopan, Jalisco 45050
Harmon Hall School Tuxtla Urb. el Recreo URUGUAY
Gutierrez Trujillo
(333) 1-21-24-35
Blvd Belisario Dominguez #680 (44) 245-822 MONTEVIDEO
Colonia Centro Alianza Cultural Uruguay
Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas 29000 PORTUGAL - Estados Unidos
Harmon Hall School Hermosillo
(961) 6-02-51-76 Paraguay 1217
Periferico Poniente #174A
Galerias Metrocenter Locales 1, LISBON Montevideo, 11.100
URUAPAN American Language Institute (2) 902-5160
2, 3
Harmon Hall School Uruapan Av. Duque de Loule, 22-1
Colonia Villa Satelite
Paseo Lasaro Cardenes #2012 Lisbon, 1050-090
Hermosillo, Sonora 83200
Col. Huertes del Cupatitzio (21) 314-6107 VENEZUELA
CP. 60080
IRAPUATO Centro Venezolano Americano
Uruapan, Mich OPORTO
Harmon Hall School Irapuato Del Zulia CEVAZ
(452) 519-1486 American Language Center
Frincisco Saarabia #146 Calle 63 # 3E-60
Colonia Moderna Av Dr Antunes Guimaraes 102, 4 , S/1 Maracaibo, Zulia 4001
VERACRUZ Oporto, 4100-072
Irapuato, Guanajuato 36690 Venezula
Harmon Hall School Veracruz (22) 618-9400
(462) 6-24-73-12 (58) (261) 718-0842
Aquiles Serdan # 687 - 3ro y 4to
Harmon Hall School Merida
Veracruz, Veracruz 91700
Calle 19 #313 X 60 BUCHAREST HANOI
(229) 9-31-61-24
Colonia Campestre Universitatea Spiru Haret Michigan English Center
Merida, Yucatan P 97120 Str. Ion Chica 13, sect. 3 7 Dao Duy Anh (3rd Floor)
(999) 9-44-88-44 PARAGUAY Bucuresti, 70481 Dong Da District
MEXICO CITY SPAIN (04) 577-0324
Centro de Estudio de Idiomas CCPA
Lindavista, A.C. Avenida Espana 352
Av Instituto Politécnico Nacional Central Idiomas S.L. Michigan English Proficiency
#1733-B (5) 21-224-831
Calle Calderon de la Barca, 14 (MEP)
Albacete 02002 77 Ba Huyen Thanh Quan
MONTERREY PERU (67) 23-00-74 District 3
Harmon Hall School Monterrey Ho Chi Minh City
Av Eugenio Garza Sada #3755 Sur AREQUIPA ALMERIA (08) 900-3180
Planta Alta CCPNA Arequipa English Center, College of Languages
Colonia Contry C/Melgar 109 Calle Jose Arles de Arcos, 34-K
Monterrey, Nuevo Leon 64680 Casilla 555 Almeria 04004
(81) 3-69-19-12 Arequipa (950) 23-45-51
(54) 89-1022
Harmon Hall School Oaxaca CHICLAYO Instituto de Estudios N/A
Av. Independencia No. 1108 ICPNA Via Augusta 123
Col. centro M Izaga #807 Barcelona 08006
Oaxaca de Juarez, Oax 68000 Chiclayo (932) 40-28-47
(915) 51-420-41 (74) 231-241
CUSCO Easy English School
ICPNC-CUSCO Aptdo Correos N 47
Av Tullumayo 125 El Astillero 39610
Cusco (942) 54-11-03
(84) 239-451

How long does it take to receive test results?
How often can I take the ECPE? Examinees typically receive their results within 2 to
Examinees may take the ECPE once a year. Test 3 months after taking the exam.
centers offer the ECPE once a year, from November
to April, depending on the country. How do I receive my results?
The test center where you took the exam will notify
Do I have to be a student at the test center in order to you of your results.
take the ECPE there?
No. Test centers are required to offer the ECPE to all How can I replace a missing or lost certificate?
interested persons, regardless of whether they are You may request a replacement certificate by
students at the test center. contacting the University of Michigan English
Language Institute directly. There is a U.S. $15 fee
Should I use a pen or pencil on the writing section? to replace a certificate.
Examinees can use either a pen or a pencil on the
writing section. However, a pencil must be used on all How does the ECPE relate to the Common European
other written sections of the exam to mark answers Framework?
on the separate optically scanned answer sheet. The content and difficulty of the ECPE aims at the
C2 (Proficient User, Mastery) level
May I use a dictionary during the exam?
No. Examinees are not allowed to use any aids C2 Mastery
during the exam. Proficient C1 Effective Operational Profi-
May I make notes in my test booklet? B2 Vantage
In Part III of the listening section of the ECPE, B1 Threshold
examinees are encouraged to take notes in the test A2 Waystage
booklet as they listen. Otherwise, it is not necessary. Basic
A1 Breakthrough
Examinees should not mark answers in the test
booklet, but on the separate answer sheet.
How can I get more information about University of
If I donʼt know the answer to a question, should I Michigan exams?
guess or leave the answer blank? Additional information about the ECPE and other
If you donʼt know the answer to a question, you University of Michigan exams is available on the
should make an educated guess. There is no penalty English Language Institute Web site.
for wrong answers.
What happens if I mark more than one answer to a
For specific information about test dates, registration
procedures, and test fees in your area, contact your
The question will be marked wrong, even if one of
local test center.
the marked answer choices is correct.

If I use alternate English accents or spellings in the

speaking or writing sections, will I be penalized?

Who scores the speaking section?

The local oral examiner who administers your oral
interaction will score that section of the exam.

Who scores the writing section?

The writing section is scored by trained evaluators
at the University of Michigan English Language


In this portion of the ECPE Bulletin you will find additional

information and/or samples of the oral interaction, listening,
grammar, cloze, vocabulary, reading, and writing sections
of the ECPE. You can use the samples to familiarize
yourself with the format, content, and general difficulty of
the ECPE. Please remember that these are samples only.
The ability to successfully complete the sample sections
does not necessarily indicate success on the ECPE.

In the oral interaction section of the ECPE, the examinee meets individually with an oral examiner at the local test
center. The oral interaction provides an opportunity for the examinee to demonstrate his or her ability to interact
and converse in spoken English. The examinee is asked about his or her background and is prompted to speak
at some length on topics of personal interest and/or topics of relevance to the examinee. The oral interaction is
intended to be an interactive conversation in which both the examinee and the oral examiner participate in an
exchange of ideas. Picture prompts may be used by some examiners to help establish a context for topics of
interest. The test center may schedule the oral interaction before or after the examinee sits for the other sections
of the ECPE.

The oral interaction is scored by the oral examiner who administers the test. The following charts show the
descriptors and salient features used by the oral examiner to determine the score on the oral interaction. A score
of 1 is considered failing.
Rating Overall Spoken English Descriptors

Honors The examinee is a highly fluent user of the language, is a very involved participant in the interaction, and
employs native-like prosody, with few hesitations in speech.
The examinee takes a very interactive role in the construction of the interaction and sustains topic development at
length. Prosody is native-like though may be accented. Idiomatic, general, and specific vocabulary range is extensive.
There is rarely a search for a word or an inappropriate use of a lexical item. The examinee employs complex
grammatical structures, rarely making a mistake.

The examinee is quite fluent and interactive but has gaps in linguistic range and control.
Overall, the examinee communicates well and is quite fluent. Accent does not usually cause intelligibility problems,
though there may be several occurrences of deviations from conventional pronunciation. The examinee is usually quite
active in the construction of the interaction and is able to elaborate on topics. Vocabulary range is good, but lexical fillers
are often employed. There are some lexical mistakes and/or lack of grammatical accuracy, usually occurring during topic

Talk is quite slow and vocabulary is limited.
Overall, the pace of talk is slow with numerous hesitations, pauses, and false starts, but fluency may exist on limited
topics. Although talk may be highly accented, affecting intelligibility, the examinee can usually convey communicative
intent. However, the discourse flow is impeded by incomplete utterances. Also, the examinee does not always
understand the examiner. Vocabulary knowledge is limited; there are usually many occurrences of misused lexical items.
Basic grammatical mistakes occur.

Talk consists mainly of isolated phrases and formulaic expressions, and there are many communication
breakdowns between the examiner and examinee.
The examineeʼs abilities are insufficient for the interaction. Some basic knowledge of English exists and some limited
responses to questions are supplied. Utterances may not consist of syntactic units, and it is often difficult to understand
the communicative intent of the examinee. The examinee also frequently does not understand the examiner. Accent may
be strong, making some of the examineeʼs responses unintelligible. Vocabulary is extremely limited and sparse.

Salient Features

Speech Fluency rate of speech, pausing/hesitation, prosody (stress, rhythm, intonation)

Intelligibility accent, articulation, delivery
Interaction Conversational Development interactional facility (responsiveness), topic development (elaboration)
Conversational Comprehen- mutual comprehension (examinee comprehension and examiner speech adjust-
sion ment)
Language Vocabulary lexical range (general, specific, idiomatic), use of lexical fillers
Grammar utterance length, utterance complexity, syntactic control, morphology


The listening section of the ECPE is delivered via audio recording. It has three parts for a total of 50 questions.
Examinees hear segments and questions only once. On the actual test, the segments and questions are not
printed in the test booklet; only the answers are printed.

Part I Part II
In Part I of the listening section, examinees hear In Part II of the listening section, examinees hear
short conversations. From the three printed answer a question. From the three answer choices given,
choices, they choose the answer that means about examinees choose the best answer to the question.
the same thing as what was heard or that is true
based upon what was heard.

Male Voice: Have you been to this restaurant before? Male Voice: There you are. What took you so long?
Female Voice: No, but Iʼve heard the food is very good.
1. a. I took some books.
1. a. She has been there before. b. As long as you want.
b. She likes the food. c. I missed the bus.
c. This is her first visit.

Female Voice: Oh, thatʼs such a cute dress! Iʼm going to Male Voice: Does that shop on State Street repair anything
buy it right away! besides TVs?
Male Voice: Hadnʼt you better try it on first? Dress
sizes do vary. 2. a. They fix everything.
b. They fix TVs too.
2. a. He thinks she should buy it. c. Itʼs next door.
b. It might not fit.
c. He likes it, too.

Female Voice: What would happen if she cancelled her trip?

Male Voice: I canʼt believe itʼs only 2 oʼclock. I wish I
could go home now. 3. a. Sheʼd lose her deposit.
Female Voice: I know how you feel, but weʼve still got 3 b. She didnʼt have enough money.
more hours to go. c. She can still go.

3. a. Theyʼll leave at 3.
b. Theyʼll both go home at 2.
c. Theyʼre both tired of work. Male Voice: Does this medicine have any side effects?

4. a. No, it helps your sight.

Female Voice: Where have you been? Iʼve been waiting b. No, itʼs quite safe.
here for half an hour. c. Yes, itʼs very effective.
Male Voice: You didnʼt get my message? I told John to
tell you I had an appointment.

4. a. She met John 30 minutes ago. Female Voice: Do you know who might have left all these
b. John didnʼt give her the message. papers lying around?
c. John gave her the message.
5. a. We have only unlined paper.
b. Well, Tom and Mary were working in here.
Male Voice: Are you an English teacher at this school? c. He might have left already.
Female Voice: Well, I used to be.

5. a. She works there.

b. She never taught.
c. She doesnʼt work there anymore.

Part III
In Part III of the listening section, examinees hear three short segments from a radio program. The program is
called “Learning from the Experts.” Examinees hear what three different radio guests have to say about three
different topics. Each talk lasts about two minutes. Examinees are encouraged to take notes in their test booklets
while listening to the segments. After each segment, examinees are asked questions about what was heard.
They must select, from the printed answer choices, the best answers to the questions. Following is an example
of one segment.
Voice 1: Magnets are an important component in many technological inventions today. They have many uses in computers
and medical devices, and you probably even have some on your refrigerator. Recently, several groups of scientists have been
working on developing a new special kind of magnet. Jim Hawkins reports:

Voice 2: In the past, magnets have always been made out of metal. But a few years ago, a group of American chemists was
able to develop one made of plastic, instead. Unfortunately, it had one very serious drawback: it only functioned at extremely
low temperatures—ones that can only be created inside of a special lab, so it wasnʼt much use for everyday products. But
now a Canadian team has developed a plastic magnet that actually works at room temperature. Elizabeth Spenser, one of the
scientists on the Canadian team, speaks about the development process.

Voice 3: Well, magnetism in metals is caused by a special alignment of electrons. In a plastic magnet, though, it is not the
alignment of electrons that creates the magnetism. In plastic magnets, there are what are known as free radicals that create
the magnetism. Free radicals are atoms that are usually strongly bonded to other atoms to form larger molecules, but weʼve
engineered these free radicals so that they are only attracted to specific kinds of metal, in the same way that a metal magnet
would be. We had been trying for several months to get the right ingredients in the right proportions. We were just about to give
up, when we decided to double-check some of the earlier models that weʼd made. To our great surprise, they actually worked
the second time around, and we were able to pick up pieces of iron with our plastic magnet.

Voice 2: It turns out that the team had been on the right track from the start, it was just that it took some time for the free
radicals in the original samples to become magnetically aligned in a way that produced a magnetic effect.

Voice 3: Thatʼs right. However, we still have a long way to go before plastic magnets will have any important commercial
uses. The main problem is that their power is still fairly weak, compared to conventional metal magnets. We now know which
chemicals we need to make the plastics out of, but weʼre still trying to figure out what the most ideal proportions should be.
Once we have all the ratios right, the plastic magnets should become much stronger. This also means that eventually we may
be able to create customized magnets, ones that are made to have a specific, precise level of strength, depending on how the
magnet is going to be used.

Voice 2: The scientists are excited, because plastic magnets have several important advantages over metal ones. First, they
weigh less, which is important for things like portable computers. Also, many medical devices use magnets, including those
implanted into the human body. Previous research has revealed that plastic components are much less likely than metal ones
to be rejected by the bodyʼs immune system.

What was the problem with the magnets created by the What do the Canadians still need to find out in order to
American scientists? improve their magnets?

1. a. They worked only at low temperatures. 4. a. at which temperatures they work the best
b. They didnʼt work at low temperatures. b. which chemicals to use
c. They had to be created inside a special lab. c. the best chemical ratios

How did the Canadian team modify their earlier models? According to the speakers, what is one reason that
scientists want to develop plastic magnets?
2. a. They added more free radicals.
b. They did not modify them. 5. a. to improve medical devices
c. They changed the proportions of the ingredients. b. There is a shortage of metal magnets.
c. Plastics are inexpensive to make.
What is the main disadvantage of plastic magnets so far?

3. a. They donʼt work at room temperature.

b. They are not powerful enough.
c. They lose their strength over time.


In the grammar portion of the ECPE, examinees choose the word or phrase that produces a grammatically
correct sentence. Some grammar questions appear in the form of a short dialogue (see number 2 below), and
some appear as a sentence. There are 40 grammar questions in the ECPE.

1. The dark storm clouds looked very _____. 6. How bad _____ he forgot to pay the rent?
a. threaten a. was it that
b. threatens b. that it was
c. threatened c. was that
d. threatening d. was

2. “Did you enjoy the movie?” 7. I like this painting because _____ where I grew
“Yes, though it was _____ Iʼd expected.” up.
a. so different from a. reminds me
b. different as that b. it reminds
c. different as what c. it reminds me of
d. different from what d. reminds me that

3. Nancy couldnʼt find a phone, so she asked 8. A bicycle _____ unlocked might be stolen.
_____ at the front desk. a. leaving
a. for an assist b. that left
b. for assistance c. left
c. to assist d. was left
d. for assisting

9. I admit that I _____.

4. Although John tried to stop the car, _____ able a. was mistaken
to. b. have mistaken
a. but wasnʼt c. was mistaking
b. but he didnʼt d. did mistake
c. he couldnʼt
d. he wasnʼt
10. John has _____ that job he applied for.
a. a little chance for getting
5. The world today _____ many challenges. b. little chances to get
a. is facing with c. a little chance in getting
b. is facing d. little chance of getting
c. has been faced
d. is faced


The cloze section of the ECPE is a passage from which words have been deleted. Examinees must choose, from
four printed answer choices, the best word to fill in the blank in both grammar and meaning. There is one cloze
passage with 20 questions in the ECPE.

A recent study on possible health risks 1. a. from c. applying

of cell phone use found that when cell phones b. using d. to
operate at radiation levels within current safety
limits, they can have a physiological effect on 2. a. very c. the
the brain. As a result, the report recommends b. of d. but
that children avoid __(1)__ cellular phones for all
__(2)__ essential calls. Because of the __(3)__ 3. a. threat c. potential
for harm, the report recommends that the mobile b. fear d. effect
phone industry refrain from promoting phone use
__(4)__ children, and __(5)__ labeling phones 4. a. by c. in
with information on the amount of radiation __(6)__ b. from d. with
emit. Since we __(7)__ fully understand the
effects of radiation from cell phones on humans, 5. a. supply c. to
the government should adopt a precautionary b. by d. start
approach, particularly in __(8)__ to children.
Childrenʼs nervous systems are still developing, 6. a. that c. being
which means they are more vulnerable to the b. they d. levels
effects of radiation than adults are. Children have
less tissue and bone to __(9)__ their brains, thus 7. a. donʼt c. might
making them more vulnerable to increased levels of b. can d. wonʼt
radiation as__(10)__to adults. Therefore, if phones
do prove to be hazardous—which they havenʼt 8. a. relating c. regard
yet—it makes sense to take precautions. b. aiming d. order

9. a. support c. prevent
b. affect d. protect

10. a. same c. much

b. compared d. done


In the vocabulary portion of the ECPE, examinees choose the word or phrase that most appropriately completes
the sentence. There are 40 vocabulary questions in the ECPE.

1. The new president promises to end 6. Although I like Adam, Iʼd be _____ to let him
government _____. take care of my children.
a. deformation a. redundant
b. ventilation b. reluctant
c. compilation c. rebellious
d. corruption d. responsible

2. The companyʼs sales increased after its shoes 7. The idea just _____ into my head.
were _____ by a famous athlete. a. gathered
a. negotiated b. grasped
b. endorsed c. popped
c. activated d. located
d. accelerated

8. Mary always tells her children to be _____ of

3. Most packaged food today is full of _____ to strangers.
keep it fresh. a. shrewd
a. preservatives b. distinctive
b. conservatives c. wary
c. infiltrations d. sensational
d. adaptations

9. The politician made his _____ on the issue

4. The president has recently _____ an increase clear.
in funding for AIDS research. a. notch
a. entitled b. state
b. accredited c. stance
c. authorized d. location
d. empowered

10. The train went by so fast that it was just _____.

5. When the government reduced spending, the a. a blur
whole educational system went _____. b. a fuse
a. downhill c. a muffle
b. downstairs d. an outburst
c. downtown
d. downstream


The reading portion of the ECPE is a reading passage followed by comprehension questions. The reading
passage is typically between 250 and 300 words long. There are four reading passages in the ECPE, each
followed by five comprehension questions.

This passage about salmon comes from a newspaper


Lately, annual runs of wild coho on the 1. According to the author, what is causing the
Rogue River have been about 80 percent below decrease in the number of wild salmon?
average. In fact, most strains of Pacific salmon are a. pollution in freshwater streams
in deep trouble as a result of overfishing at sea and b. too much fishing in freshwater streams
destruction of freshwater streams where the big c. a worsening of the young salmonʼs
fish spawn and their offspring grow large enough environment
to return to the ocean. The deteriorating condition d. an increase in competition between
of streams has seriously limited the ability of wild chinook and coho salmon
salmon, namely coho and chinook, to recover from
record low numbers. To reproduce, salmon require 2. What does the author say about
clean beds of stones in which to lay eggs. And the microorganisms?
hatchlings need deep pools of clean water with a. They cause disease in salmon.
many nooks where they can hide from predators b. They are a food source for insects.
while waiting to seize aquatic insects, their main c. They are an important food source for
food. salmon.
Trees are important in creating a good d. They help keep the water clean.
environment and an ample food supply for the
coho. But over the years, people have removed 3. Relatively cool stream water . . .
fallen trees from streams, transforming the deep a. benefits the microorganisms.
pools into shallow channels. In addition, the cutting b. harms the young salmon.
of trees along stream banks has deprived some c. causes the number of aquatic insects to
aquatic insects of the leaf material on which they decrease.
feed. Furthermore, tree removal, by eliminating d. discourages the salmon from laying
shade, has allowed stream water to warm, reducing eggs.
the number of microorganisms that other aquatic
insects eat. Salmon numbers plummet under these 4. A tree that has fallen into a salmon stream . . .
conditions and require decades to recover after a. can change deep pools into shallow
shoreline trees reappear. channels.
Nevertheless, measures can be taken b. becomes a valuable food source for the
to improve the situation. Tree trunks can be salmon.
reintroduced into the freshwater habitats. Within a c. can create a good spawning bed.
very short period of time, the movement of water d. can create a suitable place for young
under and around the logs transforms the shallow salmon to live.
spots into deep pools. Tests of this strategy have
resulted in a thousand-fold increase in the number 5. The author says that the salmon population
of young salmon that survive. could be quickly increased by . . .
a. planting trees on the shoreline.
b. putting dead trees in the streams.
c. eliminating predators.
d. reducing the number of microorganisms
in the water.


The writing section of the ECPE is separate from the listening and GCVR sections. It consists of a form with
a choice of two topics. The examinee must choose one topic on which to write a 250- to 300-word essay.
The response may be in the form of an argument or exposition, depending on the topic. The response should
develop the topic in an organized way, with some acknowledgment of the topicʼs complexity. The ideas should
be communicated clearly and with accuracy of form. Examinees should use varied syntactic structures and
appropriate vocabulary. Following is a sample writing topic.

Some psychologists believe that there is more to intelligence than what traditional intelligence tests
measure (mathematical and verbal ability). They say there are many kinds of intelligence and many ways
to be smart. Besides mathematical and linguistic intelligence, in what other ways do you think people are
smart? Be specific in your discussion and provide concrete examples.

The writing section is scored by trained raters at the University of Michigan English Language Institute. The
following chart shows the criteria used by raters to determine a score on the writing section. A score of “D” is
considered failing.
Rating Rhetoric Grammar/Syntax Vocabulary Mechanics

A Topic richly, fully, complexly Flexible use of a wide range Broad range, appropriately Spelling and punctuation
Honors developed. Organization of syntactic (sentence level) used. errors are rare and
well controlled, appropriate structures; morphological insignificant.
to the material. (word forms) control nearly
Connection is smooth. always accurate.
B Topic clearly and Both simple and complex Vocabulary use shows Spelling and punctuation
completely developed, syntax adequately used; flexibility, is usually errors are infrequent and
with acknowledgment of its good morphological control. appropriate. Any not distracting.
complexity. Organization inappropriate vocabulary
is controlled and shows does not confuse meaning.
appropriateness to the
material. Few problems
with connection.
C Topic clearly developed, but Both simple and complex Adequate vocabulary, Spelling and punctuation
not always completely or syntax present. For some, but may sometimes be errors sometimes
with acknowledgment of its syntax is cautious but inappropriately used. distracting.
complexity. Organization accurate, while others
generally controlled; are more fluent but less
connection sometimes accurate. Inconsistent
absent or unsuccessful. morphological control.
D Topic development is May have either both Vocabulary sometimes Spelling and punctuation
present, but limited by simple and complex inadequate, sometimes errors sometimes
incompleteness, lack of syntax, but with many inappropriately used, to distracting.
clarity, or lack of focus. errors, or accurate syntax the point where it causes
Probably presents only one but within a limited range. confusion of meaning.
point of view. Organization Morphological control is
partially controlled; inconsistent.
connection often absent or


Listening, Part I Vocabulary

1. C 1. D
2. B 2. B
3. C 3. A
4. B 4. C
5. C 5. A
6. B
Listening, Part II 7. C
1. C 8. C
2. A 9. C
3. A 10. A
4. B
5. B Reading
1. C
Listening, Part III 2. B
1. A 3. A
2. B 4. D
3. B 5. B
4. C
5. A

1. D
2. D
3. B
4. D
5. B
6. A
7. C
8. C
9. A
10. D

1. B
2. D
3. C
4. A
5. D
6. B
7. A
8. C
9. D
10. B