Subtest descriptions - Intermediate level


Keskitaso, the intermediate level test, is best suited for skill levels 3-4 (on the National Certificate's 6-level scale.) This is the test for adults who occasionally use the language they are learning both in everyday and in work situations but cannot yet take an active presenter's, negotiator's or expert's role in the foreign language. Their knowledge of the language and their skill in using it is already fairly good.

The National Certificate keskitaso test consists of four subtests:

  1. Reading comprehension (approx. 50 minutes)
  2. Writing (approx. 50 minutes)
  3. Listening comprehension (approx. 30 minutes)
  4. Speaking (approx. 20 minutes)


- The total testing time is about 3 hours 30 minutes.-




Reading comprehension:

Candidates are expected to understand brief newspaper articles, advertisements or any other similar short authentic texts related to the topic areas mentioned in the test specifications.

There are usually four or five separate tasks; one task may include several short texts.The questions concentrate on the comprehension of the main points and most important details. Several task types are used on each testing occasion (constructed response and selected response).






Candidates are expected to write informal and semi-informal letters or messages. Topics vary from wrting letters to contacting companies for various purposes. The main requirement for a succesful accomplishment of the task is to convey the message to the reader as comprehensibly as possible.

There are three tasks, each relatively short, that aim to simulate tasks the candidiates might encounter in real-life situations.






Candidates are expected to understand short dialogues or radio programmes and announcements spoken at normal or at times slightly moderated tempo.

The test takes place in a language laboratory, and there are usually three or four tasks. Several task types, both constructed response and selected response, are used.





Candidates are expected to express themselves orally as naturally and effectively as possible in situations that simulate real-life functions at the appropriate level.

This subtest is conducted in a language laboratory. There are usually three separate tasks that aim to tap different kinds of oral skills (e.g., reactions in situations, more extended speech).