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There are many things that you can do to prepare yourself for CAEL CE (Computer Edition). In this section, we have compiled a list of things to do before and during the CAEL CE to improve your chances of success.

LOOK AT OUR FREE SAMPLE TEST

The best way to become familiar with CAEL CE is to try our free sample test. It can help you understand what to expect in each component of CAEL CE.

REGISTER FOR THE CAEL CE PRETEST

Looking for more CAEL CE practice? Register for the CAEL CE Pretest!

  • Gives you the opportunity to practice taking listening and/or reading questions. Gain experience and confidence taking the listening and/or reading components in a real test environment.
  • Receive listening and/or reading test scores and your percentile compared to the test taker population.

DOWNLOAD THE FREE CAEL CE: AN OVERVIEW

CAEL CE: An Overview explains what to expect on the test, including a discussion of the five test parts, their format, scoring methods, study tips and strategies, and more.

JOIN A WEBINAR OR COURSE

Join one of our webinars or courses to learn about key strategies to do your best on CAEL CE. You can choose from a wide range of webinars which include information sessions, workshops, and courses. Each webinar is also presented by an experienced instructor and CAEL expert!

PURCHASE CAEL CE STUDY MATERIALS

There are study materials available to help you prepare for the CAEL CE, including a practice test and Academic Vocabulary Builder.

For a limited time, you can receive the CAEL CE Practice Test – 4 for free! Use the code CEFREE4 at checkout! Offer expires September 30, 2018.

 

REVIEW STUDY TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS

CAEL CE experts have compiled a list of the best study tips to help you get your best test results. Study tips are available for each component of CAEL CE.

LISTENING TIPS

PRACTICE LISTENING TO ACADEMIC ENGLISH BEFORE THE TEST.

For practice with English in academic contexts, try listening to news broadcasts, podcasts, the radio, or audiobooks on more academic subject material. Listening to a topic you’re interested in will make things more enjoyable, and you’re likely to pick up on new terms and expressions more easily.

BUILD YOUR VOCABULARY IN A SYSTEMATIC WAY.

In order to become better at understanding all the words you hear, you need to expand your vocabulary. Find a way to keep track of new vocabulary that works for you. You could collect new words using index cards, a notebook, or a chart on your computer. Make time to review the words that you have added to your list until you are sure of their meaning.

PREVIEW THE QUESTIONS.

Before each audio clip begins, you will have a short time to preview all the questions for that section. Use this time to get a general sense of what the questions are about, as well as any key words to listen for.

PAY CLOSE ATTENTION TO THE AUDIO.

Each audio clip can be heard only once, so you will need to listen very carefully. Try to answer as many questions as you can while you listen. You will be provided with some time after the audio finishes to try to complete any questions you may have missed.

DECIDE ON A NOTE-TAKING STRATEGY.

In the Listening tasks, your main focus should be answering the questions as you listen. That being said, keep in mind that you will sometimes need to use what you learned from the Listening passage to help with your Speaking or Writing task later in that test part. If you wish to take any brief notes during the audio, use some abbreviations or symbols that you think will help you take notes more quickly. Try practicing with the CAEL CE Sample Test to become better at gauging your time in these tasks.

RELAX AND LISTEN.

If you can’t understand a word, phrase, or sentence, continue listening and stay focused on what you are hearing. You can still understand many main points even if you cannot understand every word. Remember that the Listening questions are generally sequential, so if you lose your place while you’re listening, it may help to look for a key word in the next question and wait until you hear that word mentioned in the audio.

MOVE ON IF YOU CAN’T ANSWER A QUESTION.

You will be able to answer the questions in each Listening part in any order you wish, though it’s important to note that the questions are generally in sequential order to what is discussed in the audio. If you are having trouble answering a question, move to the next one and come back to it later! You will have some time after the audio finishes in order to complete any questions you missed. As with the Reading sections, make sure that you answer every question before moving to the next part.

WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS, MAKE A GUESS!

Answer all the questions—there is no penalty for incorrect responses. Note that for multiple-choice questions with a single answer, try to eliminate the options that you know are wrong. By doing so, your chance of guessing the correct answer becomes even higher.

MANAGE YOUR TIME.

Each part of CAEL CE has a timer on the screen, so watch the clock! Make sure that you have enough time to complete all the questions in each Listening section.

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS.

Before moving to the next section of CAEL CE, make sure that you have answered all the questions on the screen. This is especially important in Listening parts, where there is no opportunity to go back and change your answer once you have clicked Next. The tabs at the top of the screen for each set of Listening questions will turn green when all the questions have been answered. Use this to check that you have completed everything.

For questions that require you to select more than one answer, make sure that you have selected the appropriate number. Other questions will require you to type a short word or phrase; regardless of what you answer here, make sure that it is spelled correctly!

BECOME FAMILIAR WITH QUESTION TYPES.

You may encounter many different kinds of questions on the Listening part of CAEL CE. You can gain familiarity with these question types by taking the free online sample test. When taking this free sample test, pay attention to each question type and make sure you fully understand what it requires.

READING TIPS

PRACTICE READING ACADEMIC ENGLISH BEFORE THE TEST.

Try to read as much English as possible on a regular basis. Focus especially on more formal or academic texts—magazines, journals, and news articles are a great place to start. Seek out reading material on a topic you wish to study in school; this will make your reading experience more enjoyable, and you’ll probably grasp new vocabulary and expressions more easily.

BUILD YOUR VOCABULARY IN A SYSTEMATIC WAY.

In order to become better at understanding all the words you read, you need to expand your vocabulary. Find a way to keep track of new vocabulary that works for you. You could collect new words using index cards, a notebook, or a chart on your computer. Make time to review the words that you have added to your list until you are sure of their meaning.

 

YOU DON’T HAVE TO READ EVERY WORD.

You don’t have to read every single word in the passage to successfully answer the questions; instead, first, skim through the text to get the main idea. Then read the questions and find some key words for which you can scan the text.

These reading strategies may help you with some of the simpler questions, leaving more time to spend with the more challenging ones.

DON’T STRESS ABOUT THE VOCABULARY.

It’s all right if you can’t understand every word in a text, as you don’t need to understand everything to be able to get the main ideas and answer the questions. If you find a word that you don’t know, try to determine its meaning based on its context in the sentence or in the passage as a whole. If that doesn’t work, skip the problematic word and keep reading.

ANTICIPATE THE CORRECT ANSWER.

There are various question types in CAEL CE. After reading a multiple-choice question, you may find it useful to think of the correct answer before reading all the answers to that question. If you think that you know the answer already, see if you can find a multiple-choice answer that matches your first impulse.

PROVIDE ANSWERS ACCORDING TO THE PASSAGES.

Although you may not be familiar with the topic of a passage, in CAEL CE you can always determine the answers from the passage. Therefore, you don’t need any in-depth knowledge about the topic. If you are familiar with a topic used in the test, be careful. Remember that what you know might be different from the information in the text, so make sure that you still answer the questions based on the passage you read.

WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS, MAKE A GUESS!

Answer all the questions—there is no penalty for incorrect responses. Note that for multiple-choice questions with a single answer, try to eliminate the options that you know are wrong. By doing so, your chance of guessing the correct answer becomes even higher.

MANAGE YOUR TIME.

Each part of CAEL CE has a timer on the screen, so watch the clock! Keep track of the time, and make sure you have enough time to complete all the questions in each section. Remember that each Reading section has a passage to read and some questions based on the text. Don’t spend all your time reading the passage because you also need time to read and understand the questions. Make sure you have enough time to answer all the questions.

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS.

Before moving to the next section of CAEL CE, make sure that you have answered all the questions on the screen. This is especially important in Reading parts, where there is no opportunity to go back and change your answer once you have clicked Next. The tabs at the top of the screen for each set of Reading questions will turn green when all the questions have been answered. Use this to check that you have completed everything.

For questions that require you to select more than one answer, make sure that you have selected the appropriate number. Other questions will require you to type a short word or phrase; regardless of what you answer here, make sure that it is spelled correctly!

BECOME FAMILIAR WITH QUESTION TYPES.

You may encounter many different kinds of questions on the Reading part of CAEL CE. You can gain familiarity with these question types by taking the free online sample test. When taking this free sample test, pay attention to each question type and make sure you fully understand what it requires.

WRITING TIPS

PRACTICE WRITING BEFORE THE TEST.

The best way to strengthen your writing skills for CAEL CE is to write every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Some common formats you might choose to write in include blogs; daily journals; or emails to friends, family, or co-workers. When reading, pay attention to how the authors use various expressions and grammar structures, and note down new words and phrases for future reference during your test preparation.

USE A WIDE RANGE OF VOCABULARY AND GRAMMATICAL STRUCTURES.

Use diverse and rich words in order to demonstrate the range of your vocabulary. Ensure that your word choice is appropriate. Use varied grammatical structures and construct sentences that differ in length and complexity.

BUILD YOUR VOCABULARY IN A SYSTEMATIC WAY.

In order to be able to use a wide range of vocabulary effectively, you need to expand your vocabulary. Find a way to keep track of new vocabulary that works for you. You could collect new words using index cards, a notebook, or a chart on your computer. Make time to review the words that you have added to your list until you are sure of their meaning.

ADDRESS ALL PARTS OF THE TASK.

Follow all instructions and fully develop all parts of the task, supporting your main ideas with relevant details.

ORGANIZE YOUR WRITING.

Structure your sentences and paragraphs in a well-planned framework that helps your ideas and arguments flow in a clear and logical way. Making an outline prior to writing is the best way to make sure that all of your ideas fit well into your piece of writing (you will be provided with notepaper and a pen to help with this). Ensure that you use the appropriate transitions and topic sentences as required.

PAY ATTENTION TO THE WORD COUNT.

For both Writing tasks on CAEL CE, you will have a minimum recommended word count. Each Writing task has a word counter so that you can easily keep track of the length of your response.

MANAGE YOUR TIME.

Use the first few minutes to plan your response to the prompt (this is useful for the longer Writing task especially), and a few minutes at the end to revise your work and make improvements. The rest of the time should be spent writing the response itself.

REREAD YOUR RESPONSES.

Leave enough time to check your writing. Pay close attention to the types of errors you most commonly make. Unlike most word processors, CAEL CE does not include a spell check, so keep this in mind while you are reviewing your work.

BECOME FAMILIAR WITH QUESTION TYPES.

You will encounter different kinds of Writing questions in CAEL CE. You can gain familiarity with these question types by taking the free online sample test. When taking this free sample test, pay attention to each question type and make sure you fully understand what it requires.

SPEAKING TIPS

 

PRACTICE SPEAKING IN ACADEMIC ENGLISH BEFORE THE TEST.

Practice speaking English with your friends, family, and co-workers. You could also practice reading aloud from academic and formal texts such as news or journal articles. Remember that the Speaking tasks are done through a computer, so there is no human examiner. Practice speaking into a recording device so that you can feel confident during your test. Playing back the recording can help you identify some of the weaknesses in your speech that you should try to improve.

USE NOTES TO HELP BRAINSTORM.

For your Speaking task in Part 2, you will have access to the entire related Reading passage. For your Speaking task in Part 3, you will have access to some brief notes about the related Listening passage. That being said, you may still wish to make notes during these sections. Jotting down the main ideas, or any names or key words you feel are important, could make your brainstorming for the Speaking tasks a lot more efficient.

USE YOUR PREPARATION TIME EFFICIENTLY.

You will have a short preparation time before you must begin speaking for each task. Use this time to read and understand the prompt and organize your thoughts before you begin to speak.

GIVE COMPLETE ANSWERS.

Give the CAEL CE Raters as much content as possible so that they can accurately assess your oral proficiency. This means that you should elaborate on your answers by providing enough relevant detail. Do not go off topic, but speak as much as you can in the time allotted for each prompt.

If asked to discuss an aspect of the Reading or Listening topic—or to describe a diagram—use examples from the passages to supplement your response, but always use your own words. If asked for your opinion, try to draw from your own life experiences, adding plenty of details.

SPEAK CLEARLY AND AT A NATURAL PACE.

Speak clearly into the microphone. Before you begin CAEL CE, you will be given an opportunity to test the recording device and hear how your voice sounds. Use this opportunity to find the best volume, tone, and pace to use for the Speaking tasks.

TRY NOT TO REPEAT WORDS.

Use your own words to show the CAEL CE Raters your full ability, rather than repeating the words in the prompt exactly. During your response, try not to repeat the same words too often; instead, think of synonyms and paraphrases to express your ideas and demonstrate the range of your vocabulary.

BUILD YOUR VOCABULARY IN A SYSTEMATIC WAY.

In order to be able to use a wide range of vocabulary effectively, you need to expand your vocabulary. Find a way to keep track of new vocabulary that works for you. You could collect new words using index cards, a notebook, or a chart on your computer. Make time to review the words that you have added to your list until you are sure of their meaning.

DON’T WORRY ABOUT YOUR ACCENT.

Unless your accent prevents you from being understood, do not focus on it. Instead, concentrate on thoroughly responding to the prompts, and using good grammar and accurate and varied vocabulary.

MANAGE YOUR TIME.

Use the preparation time to understand the prompt, brainstorm ideas, and organize what you want to say. Watch the Speaking timer to make sure you say enough and finish your last sentence before the time is up.

BECOME FAMILIAR WITH QUESTION TYPES.

You will encounter different kinds of Speaking questions in CAEL CE. You can gain familiarity with these question types by taking the free online sample test. When taking this free sample test, pay attention to each question type and make sure you fully understand what it requires.

CREATE A DAILY STUDY ROUTINE

Spend time every day preparing for the test instead of doing all of your studying and reviewing once a week. Studying daily for shorter periods of time, rather than studying once a week for a large block of time, will be more useful in improving your academic English skills.

SURROUND YOURSELF WITH ENGLISH

Become immersed in English language activities, such as reading English magazines and books, watching English television and movies, and listening to English podcasts, audiobooks, and radio. The more you engage in English language activities, especially at an academic level, the stronger your English skills will become.

CAEL CE QUICK LINKS

  • "CAEL CE (Computer Edition) is self explanatory, and is very user friendly. In the writing component, it helps that there is a word count feature. There is also no stress about handwriting being awkward or having to scribble over spelling mistakes. CAEL CE is the way to go forward because it's how the current education system works and the way communication is handled in the professional world. CAEL CE hits right at the mark!"

    Sukhbir, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to ICCRC, Overall Score: 70
  • "What I like most about CAEL CE (Computer Edition) is the ease of understanding and navigating the test. Also, you can complete all components (speaking, reading, listening, and writing) at one time in about 3 hours."

    Martin, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to University of Alberta, Overall Score: 90
  • "CAEL CE (Computer Edition) is a very well-designed English test. When preparing for the test, I went through the CAEL CE Practice Test which showed me exactly what the official test would be like!"

    Ravinder, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to ICCRC, Overall Score: 70
  • "What I liked most about CAEL CE is that it is a Canadian based English test and uses Canadian accents. It will help me get into my dream school at McGill University in which I can pursue my studies in International Relations. I would recommend CAEL CE for anyone because it is efficient, and not overly complicated or hard. It was simple and direct!"

    Jenny, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to McGill University, Overall Score: 80
  • "What I liked most about CAEL CE was that you can do the test on the computer, it uses Canadian English, and the results are released quickly!"

    Alinsson, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to Algonquin College, Overall Score: 70
  • "I would recommend CAEL CE (Computer Edition) because, compared to other academic English tests, it's the same quality but at a cheaper price!"

    Shu-Yi, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to BCIT, Overall Score: 70
  • "The CAEL CE Online Courses were a great opportunity to prepare for CAEL CE, and paired with the CAEL CE Pretest, provided thorough preparation for my test. I also found that completing all of the test components in one location at one time was very convenient."

    Xuan, CAEL CE Test TakerApplicant to ICCRC, Overall Score: 70