About EIKEN Grade Pre-1

Grade Pre-1 requires solid English skills at a level just below Grade 1, the final goal for EIKEN examinees. This level is mainly aimed at university students. Examinees are expected to be able to understand and use the English necessary to participate in social, professional, and educational situations. In addition to being useful for applying to post-secondary academic institutions and obtaining academic credits, Grade Pre-1 certification has been set as a benchmark for English instructors by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and it has a wide range of benefits for studying overseas. The examination is divided into two parts, Stage 1 (a written examination including a listening section) and Stage 2 (an interview-format speaking test).

Pass level comparison

EIKEN EIKEN CSE Score TEAP CEFR TOEFL® score
PBT iBT
Grade Pre-1 2304 334 B2 550 80
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Level description

Can understand and use the English necessary to participate effectively in social, professional, and educational situations.

Overview of test structure

First stage

Time allotted: Reading & Writing(90 minutes)/ Listening(app. 25 minutes)

Skill area Task Format Items Response type
Reading Sentence completion 25 short texts (one or two sentences/dialogues) from which one word or phrase has been omitted 25 Multiple-choice (Four printed options)
Gap fill (passages) 2 passages from which several phrases have been omitted 6
Q&A based on passages 3 passages followed by questions 10
Writing English Composition 1 topic question with 4 points (examinees must address 2 points) 1 120-150 word composition
Listening Q&A based on dialogues 12 recorded conversations/discussions followed by questions 10 Multiple-choice (Four printed options)
Q&A based on monologues 6 recorded announcements, advertisements, news stories, or short lectures followed by questions 10
Real-life Listening   5 recorded announcements, advertisements, news stories, or short lectures followed by questions (Examinees read a short description of the situation, and the question, before listening.)   5
Topics

General social situations, arts, culture, history, education, science, nature, environment, medicine, technology, business, politics, etc.

Second stage

English interview (app. 8 min.)

Skill area Task Format Time allotted Notes
Speaking Warm-up Examiners engage examinee in free conversation (not evaluated) 1 or 2 questions

Evaluation Criteria:
Examinees are evaluated separately for the narration, for responses to each question, and for their attitude toward actively engaging in communication.

No. of Examiners:1

Short Narration Preparation Examinee reads question card silently and prepares to narrate four-panel illustration on card 1 minute
Delivery Examinee gives Narration based on topic 2 minute
Q&A No. 1 Examiner asks question connected to/related to illustration
No. 2 Examiner asks question related to general topic of card
No. 3 Examiner asks question related to general topic of card
No. 4 Examiner asks question about social issue or idea broadly related to general topic of card

Summary of Can-do statements

Below are summaries of the main features of the tasks and activities that typical Grade Pre-1 certificate holders feel confident about performing in English in real-life language-use situation

Reading Can understand texts from a range of social, professional, and educational situations.
Listening Can understand content from a range of social, professional, and educational situations.
Speaking Can make explanations and express his/her opinions about topics relevant to a range of social, professional, and educational situations.
Writing Can write at length about topics from everyday life and topics relevant to some social, professional, and educational situations.

Virtual speaking test (Grade Pre-1)

An animated, easy-to-understand walkthrough of the Stage 2 Interview Test, showing the entire process from the time the examinee enters the room until he or she leaves it. (requires Japanese)