Certificate of Use of Language in Spanish
The Certificate of Use of Language in Spanish, or CELU (Certificado de Español: Lengua y Uso), is an exam designed to determine the level of proficiency in the Spanish language. This exam can be taken by anyone whose mother language is not Spanish and needs to demonstrate they have a certain level of proficiency of the language, whether it be for working or studying, in Spanish speaking countries. The exam is required by universities in Argentina for foreigners and it is also accepted as a valid exam in Brazil and China.
Any person whose mother language is not Spanish can take this exam. They must be at least 16 years of age and certify a minimum three years of high school education (EGB III according to the current educational system in Argentina, roughly someone who has just passed to the 11th grade in the American system).
Passing the exam fulfills the language requirements for studying or working in Argentina in those openings where knowledge of Spanish is a requirement.
There are two pass grades, either "Intermediate" or "Advanced" level, awarded to candidates who achieve these grades. Candidates who do not pass are not given a grade. Both grades reflect how proficient the person is in the use of Spanish as a foreign language, especially in dealing with everyday situations and work related or academic issues.
This exam is aimed at certifying a certain level of command of the language, therefore, regardless of the regional variation a candidate may know, they will be able to understand the situations to be dealt with in the exam.
The CELU is recognized as a certificate which demonstrates a persons knowledge of the Spanish language in:
Parts of the Exam
Format Section Skills Time Allowed Activity Written
- Listening to texts
- Producing an essay aimed at an informal or a formal reader.
15 to 20 minutes
- Reading short texts and discussing them
Exams are taken in June and November. Application is opened three months prior to the examination dates and remains open for about one month.
University Consortium for the Evaluation of Knowledge and Use of Spanish as a Second Language
The following Universities are currently part of the Consortium:
- Universidad de Buenos Aires
- Universidad Nacional de Catamarca
- Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires
- Universidad Nacional del Comahue
- Universidad Nacional de Córdoba
- Universidad Nacional de La Pampa
- Universidad Nacional de La Plata
- Universidad Nacional del Litoral
- Universidad de Lomas de Zamora
- Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata
- Universidad Nacional de Quilmes
- Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto
- Universidad Nacional de Río Negro
- Universidad Nacional de San Luis
- Universidad Nacional de General San Martín
- Universidad Nacional de Villa María
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