How to Describe Your English Ability?

English ability levels :

  1. Beginner
  2. Intermediate
  3. Advanced
  4. Fluent
  5. Native

1. Beginner

If I’m just starting to learn a language, I might call myself a beginner, but I’m more likely to say “I’m just starting to learn English.”

If I had to describe this beginner level, I would probably say something like, “I have a basic knowledge of English” or “I can understand basic English.”

Here are the expressions you can use to talk about basic language skills:

  • I know a few words in English.
  • I’m a complete beginner in English.
  • I have a basic knowledge of English.


2. Intermediate

Next, if we pass past this Beginner level, would we say “I’m intermediate”?

The idea of “intermediate” appears like educational thinking that doesn’t always have a lot of relevance to your everyday life or the type of language skills you want in the workplace.

Here are the expressions you can use to talk about Intermediate language skills:

  • I know quite a bit of English.
  • I speak Intermediate English.
  • I understand more English than I speak.


3. Advanced

The next step above Intermediate English is to talk about your professional skills in the language.

Many people have to communicate English in professional environments, however they may not feel like they speak fluently. This is absolutely normal!

Here are the expressions you can use to talk about Advanced language skills:

  • I know a lot of English.
  • I can speak English fairly well.
  • I have full professional proficiency.


4. Fluent

Next, let’s speak about everybody’s preferred topic: speaking fluently.

In general, we all understand what speaking fluently means:

– thinking in English
– not translating from your native language
– speaking automatically
– being capable to deal with informal and expert conditions confidently
– being capable to discuss a huge range of subjects and now not feeling like your language abilities are limited.

Here are the expressions you can use to talk about Fluent language skills:

  • I can speak English fluently.
  • I’m fluent in English.


5. Native

If you’ve managed to get a fantastic accent, it’s very difficult to hear that you’re now not a native speaker, and you nearly in no way make mistakes, then you can say you have near-native proficiency.

Near-native proficiency is a step above speaking a language fluently and suggests you are capable to read, write, understanding, talk the language simply as nicely as a native speaker.

It also suggests that you are culturally fluent and have a deep understanding of cultural references.

Here are the expressions you can use to talk about Native language skills:

  • I am multilingual.
  • I speak English with near-native proficiency.
  • I am a native speaker of English.
  • I am a native English speaker.

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