In today’s global business world, it is important to show employers you can communicate in English effectively in every-day business situations. We offer three levels of Cambridge English Business exams: Business Preliminary, Business Vantage and Business Higher.

Cambridge English: Business Preliminary (BEC Preliminary)

Cambridge English: Business Preliminary is also known as the Business English Certificate (BEC) Preliminary. It is the first in a series of three Cambridge English Business Certificates. This qualification shows employers that you can communicate in English in practical everyday business situations. It is the same level as the Cambridge English: Preliminary (PET), but is focused on English in business situations.

Level of qualification: Intermediate = B1 on the Common European Framework

Who should take this exam?

You should take this exam if you want to improve your English for your career. Studying for the BEC Preliminary will give you a good foundation in the English skills you will need to work in international business contexts.

To take the exam you should be able to:

  • follow short telephone conversations or general business discussions
  • discuss practical business tasks such as ordering or answering general enquiries
  • write brief factual business letters or emails.

There are three parts to all Business English exams. You do the Reading & Writing and the Listening papers on the same day. You may need to return to do the Speaking on the same or a different day. You do the Speaking part with two examiners and one or, in exceptional circustances, two other candidates.

  READING AND WRITING LISTENING SPEAKING
Time 1 hr 30 mins 40 mins 12 mins
Marks (% of total) 50% 25% 25%

Cambridge English: Business Vantage (BEC Vantage)

Cambridge English: Business Vantage is also known as the Business English Certificate Vantage (BEC Vantage). It is the second in a series of three Cambridge English Business Certificates. This qualification shows that you can communicate in English in a business environment. It is the same level as the Cambridge English: First (FCE) qualification, but is focused on English for business.

Level of qualification: Upper Intermediate = B2 on the Common European Framework

Who should take this exam?

You should take this exam if you want to prove to employers that your English is good enough for you to work in an English-speaking business environment. Studying for the BEC Vantage will develop your confidence and the English skills you need to succeed in international business contexts.

To take the exam you should be able to:

  • understand the meaning of business reports and letters
  • express your opinion or have a discussion about factual issues
  • give a short prepared presentation, and write a brief proposal.

There are three parts to all Business English exams. You do the Reading & Writing and the Listening papers on the same day. You may need to return to do the Speaking on the same or a different day. You do the Speaking part with two examiners and one or two other candidates.

  READING WRITING LISTENING SPEAKING
Time 1 hr 45 mins 40 mins 14 mins
Marks (% of total) 25% 25% 25% 25%

Cambridge English: Business Higher (BEC Higher)

Cambridge English: Business Higher is also known as the Business English Certificate Higher (BEC Higher). It is the final exam in a series of three Cambridge English Business Certificates. This qualification shows that you can communicate confidently in English in a business environment. It is the same level as the Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE), but is focused on English for business.

Level of qualification: Advanced = C1 on the Common European Framework

Who should take this exam?

You should take this exam if you want to develop professional English business skills. The BEC Higher qualification proves to employers that you can be effective in a demanding English-speaking business environment. To take the exam you should be able to:

  • take an active part in business meetings, expressing your opinions and arguing your point of view
  • understand most business reports and correspondence
  • write detailed business proposals and letters.

There are three parts to all Business English exams. You do the Reading & Writing and the Listening papers on the same day. You may need to return to do the Speaking on a different day. You do the Speaking with two examiners and one or two other exam candidates.

  READING WRITING LISTENING SPEAKING
Time 1 hr 1 hr 10 mins 40 mins 16 mins
Marks (% of total) 25% 25% 25% 25%