L2. Activity 3.1: What is the CEFR?


CEFR is the Common European Framework. It is an international standard for describing language ability. It is used around the woild to describe learner’s language skills.


CEFR serves the overall aim of the Council of Europe as defined in Recommendations R (82) 18 and R (98) 6 of the Committee of Ministers: ‘to achieve greater unity among its members’ and to pursue this aim ‘by the adoption of common action in the cultural field.


One of the aims of the Framework is to help partners to describe the levels of proficiency
required by existing standards, tests and examinations in order to facilitate comparisons
between different systems of qualifications.



Implementation CEFR in classrooms

  • Communicative approach (action-oriented, interaction, task-based learning)

                  – Read newspapers and discuss topical issues, comparing news.

                  – Interactions (conversations, debates)

  • Plurilingual approach (languageis not learnt in isolation)

                  – Comparison of other languages (contrast)

                  – Portfolio: control the learning process, independence


Harmer, Jeremy.International Language Standards. Cambridge English, page 95

Council of Europe. “European Languages Portfolio”. Retrieved from:

Harmer, Jeremy (2007). The Practice of English language Teaching. Fourth Edition. Pearson, Longman.



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