Preliminary English Test (PET)

Is PET for you?

Passing PET shows that you can use everyday written and spoken English at an intermediate level. It covers all four language skills — reading, writing, listening and speaking.

Preparing for the exam is a popular way to develop and improve your language skills because it provides you with practical language practice in a variety of everyday work, study and leisure situations.

PET reflects the use of language in real life, such as understanding signs and announcements, and many employers will see it as proof of your ability to use English at an intermediate level.

Can you use English to:

If you are working towards acquiring those skills and your level of English currently permits you to do approximately those things, then PET is probably the right exam for you.

What level is PET?

PET is at Level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEF). At B1 level, typical users can be expected to:

Your preparation for PET will give you these kinds of practical language skills.

Cambridge English - Preparation courses

What is on the PET exam?

There are three papers on the PET exam:

Reading and Writing - 1 hour 30 minutes

You need to be able to read texts from signs, journals, newspapers and magazines and understand the main points. You will need to show you can use vocabulary and structure by completing tasks such as writing a short message, and a story or letter of around 100 words. You will also need to complete an exercise involving changing the meaning of sentences.

Listening - approx. 30 minutes

You will need to show you can understand the meaning of a range of recorded spoken material, including announcements and discussions about everyday life. You need to be able to follow the attitudes and intentions of the speakers.

Speaking - Up to 10 minutes

Candidates take the Speaking test in pairs. You have to show your spoken English by taking part in conversation, asking and answering questions, and talking freely about your likes and dislikes.


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