Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Some 43,000 candidates chose the Diplomas de Español como Lengua Extranjera (Diplomas of Spanish as a foreign language) in the first half of the year

About 43,000 candidates have registered during the first half of the year to sit the exams to obtain the Diplomas of Spanish as a Foreign Language (DELE). The exams of the May session have been held on May 24th and May 25th in 537 centers across 95 countries.

The DELE diplomas are official qualifications accrediting the degree of knowledge of the Spanish language. They facilitate access to employment and to the academic world. They are issued by the Cervantes Institute on behalf of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports of Spain.  They have indefinite validity and enjoy wide international recognition.

The May session is the one that has the largest volume of applicants, with two-thirds of the annual amount of candidates, well above those held in August and November.
Distributed by country, the largest number of candidates -37% - was registered in Italy, it has increases by two points compared with last year's figures. Italy is followed by Spain (7.8% of all applicants), Greece (6.5%), France (5%), China (4%), Brazil (3.7%), South Korea (3.2%), Germany (2.7%) and Japan (2.2%).

The countries that have most increased the number of candidates are China (almost 50% more), Brazil and South Korea (more than 20% each), reports the Cervantes Institute.

There are six levels adapted to the Common European Framework of Reference and seven Diplomas of DELE: DELE A1, A2, B1 (formerly Initial), academic B1, B2 (formerly Intermediate), C1 and C2.

The most requested levels are intermediate: almost two thirds of the candidates (64%) aspire to obtain a diploma B, compared to diplomas A (24%) and C (11%).

This month of May marks the end of the life cycle of the DELE beginner and intermediate exams, whose format and features have been in place since almost 20 years. From the sessions of next August, examinations for diplomas B1 and B2 will have new formats of tests and tasks.  The rating systems will also be modified.

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