Types of Test
How to Take a Lesson
Answering in English
Answering in French
There are two types of test to choose from. You can ...
either, take a short test at a particular level
or, test yourself on the Whole Vocabulary
This test starts with easy words and moves to harder ones if you get them right -- so you can take this test whatever your current standard of French.
Note 1 Words you get right from the advanced courses count for a lot more than those from the easier courses so your final percentage score may be a lot lower than you expected -- unless you scored 100%!
Note 2 The number of words left in the test is shown in your words counter. You may notice this counter increase towards the end of the test. This is to make sure that there are enough words to assess you properly on your final course.
You can also improve your vocabulary by taking the online lessons. You'll probably need to see each word a few times to learn it properly and there are two different lesson styles to help you.
Answering in English is easy. Just type the word in the box and press Enter or click OK. Some of the answer may be filled in for you -- for example "to ... " if it's a verb.
Most French nouns are shown with the definite article (le, la, l' or les) but you don't need to type the when you answer in English.
This is more complicated than English because you may need to show that you know the word's gender.
When you are entering a French noun, click the checkbox to select the gender first. The article ("le" or "une" etc) will be filled in automatically. If you change your mind about the gender before clicking OK, don't edit the article itself -- just click the other checkbox and the change will be made for you.
A lot of words in French have masculine and feminine forms (like waiter and waitress in English). The tests always ask you for the masculine word -- even when this is the less common one -- for example "nurse [male]" (= "un infirmier"). When this happens, the masculine box is checked automatically and the article is inserted for you.
To insert a letter with an accent, click one of the buttons under the Answer box. The letter will appear at the end of your answer. (You may also need these buttons for a few English words.)
After clicking OK you will see:
Because this is a French test, you don't lose any marks for spelling mistakes in English! As long as the word is recognisable, you will get a full mark. But a misspelt word in French will only earn you 3/4 (0.75) of a mark.
The counters at the bottom of the page tell you how much of the test or lesson is left to complete and show you how many marks you have earned so far.
The vocabulary contains about 9,000 words and phrases organised into seven different courses which are built around the vocabulary for British school exams.
The Beginners' course covers essential words like numbers, family, days of the week etc. The next three courses contain words which are common in GCSE exams and the three advanced ones cover the vocabulary for typical A Level topics.
Some of the vocabulary entries aren't used in the tests -- for example phrases like "il se rase" (= "he is shaving") or words which have two possible answers like "écran" (= "screen" or "monitor"). For details of some other words which aren't tested, see Tips.
The first page of the test shows the total number of words and phrases in each course (not just the number featured in the test). This is the figure used to estimate your vocabulary at the end of the test.
Updated 25-Jul-2009 Copyright Brian Probert, 2000-2009 with scenes by Cleo Harrington