Diplomas and Tests in Business and Professional English
Your Key to Successful Communication in International Business

The Certificate in English for Business Communication (EBC)

The Certificate in English for Business Communication (EBC) is a written and oral examination in business English. It is designed specifically for French-speaking learners*:

  • Professionals wishing to validate their level of competence in English after a training course in business English (i.e. DIF)

  • Students studying at Business Schools, Universities and on commercial BTS courses

  • Anyone needing to be able to communicate with business colleagues and partners in English

* The exam includes a French to English translation exercise and some of the instructions are also given in French.

To pass the EBC exam, candidates are required to have reached a B1+ level on the Common European Framework.


OVERVIEW OF THE EXAM PAPERS

The exam consists of 4 written papers and an oral test.

WRITTEN EXAM - 2h40 ORAL EXAM - 15 minutes
Commercial Vocabulary (40m) Part 1 Interview
Reading comprehension (40m)
Listening comprehension (40m) Part 2 – Role-play
Writing (40m)

 

THE WRITTEN EXAM

Commercial Vocabulary

Part 1: 10 sentences in French to translate into English.The sentences are on a variety of business themes and contain several basic grammar points (tenses, prepositions, verb forms, simple phrasal verbs).Part 2: Gap filling exercise of a text in English.There are 10 gaps in total. For each gap, the students have to choose between four words or expressions.Duration: 40 minutes
Marked out of 100

 

Reading Comprehension

3 texts, questions and answers in English.
The texts are correspondence type documents or short extracts from the business press.

Duration: 40 minutes
Marked out of 100

 

Listening Comprehension

10 short passages, each followed by questions in English.
Candidates have to understand and note down numbers, names, dates, times, email or website addresses and more complex messages or information.
Candidates hear each passage twice.

Duration: 40 minutes
Marked out of 100

 

Writing

One business letter or e-mail to write following instructions in French.

At this level, the candidates are not expected to be able to write perfectly. The information that candidates are asked to communicate is always very straightforward and should not require them to use any complicated constructions or difficult business terminology.

Duration: 40 minutes
Marked out of 100


THE ORAL EXAM – Duration: 15 minutes

Part 1: Interview – the examiner will ask the candidate questions to encourage him/her to speak about his/her company and job, a work placement or his/her career ambitions. 

Part 2: Role-play – the examiner gives the candidate the Candidate’s instructions which are in French. The candidate has approximately 1 minute to read the instructions. He/she cannot take any notes. The examiner and the candidate then act the situation following the order of the prompts given in the instructions.

Duration: 15 minutes
Marked out of 100

 

GRADING SYSTEM 

Candidates obtain a score out of 100 for each of the 5 papers and a global score out of 500

Global Score Grade CEF Level*
400-500/100 Distinction B2+
350-399/500 Merit B2
300-349/500 Pass B1+
200-299/500 Fail B1
100-199/500 Fail A2
0-99/500 Fail A1

 

* Common European Framework

To pass the Certificate in English for Business Communication, a candidate needs to obtain a global score of at least 300/500, which is the equivalent of a level B1+ on the Common European Framework. 

Candidates who fail the exam receive a certificate showing their level according to the FBCCI and Common European Framework scales. 

A preparation course for the CERTIFICATE IN ENGLISH FOR BUSINESS COMMUNICATION is an excellent way of introducing students to business and professional language. While encouraging them to consolidate their mastery of the basics, it will enable them to become familiar with the language used in written and oral business communication and in texts pertaining to the business world in general. 

Those who are successful in this exam can then go on to prepare for the DIPLOMA IN BUSINESS ENGLISH.