GESE Grades 1-3

Trinity College London International ESOL Examinations - GESE

This page contains information on Trinity's Graded Examinations in Spoken English (GESE), grades 1, 2 & 3. There are 12 grades in total which are linked to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). Within the 12 grades, there are four stages with three grades at each stage. Here is the information for the Initial Stage's first three grades:

Grade 2 at A1 on the CEFR and ESOL Entry level 1 is approved by the Home Office for Spouse/Partner (FLR - M) and Parents of Dependants in the UK (FLR O) visa applications

Grades 1-3 Initial Stage (5-7 mins)

This is a simple conversation with the examiner. During the conversation you are required to demonstrate understanding through gesture and basic actions, and by giving short responses. The examiner will speak slowly and clearly, but you should ask for repetition of anything you have not heard or understood. In addition to the points below, you must read the Initial stage section of the GESE Syllabus to give you the best possible chance of passing your exam.

Now read more about the grade you are going to take:

Grade 1 – (up to 5 mins)You are expected to answer the examiner’s questions with very short responses as well as with gestures and actions.

The candidate is expected to demonstrate the following communicative skills and meet the language requirements listed below during the examination:

  • Exchange greetings with the examiner
  • Show understanding of simple instructions through appropriate actions
  • Give very short answers to simple questions and requests for information

Click on 'Gd1 Michail' to watch a video of a candidate taking this exam.

Grade 2– (6 mins) (A1 / ESOL Entry 1 test - Home Office approved for FLR (M) & FLR (O) visa applications)

It is acceptable for you to answer the examiner’s questions with a few words, short responses or full sentences. You are expected to give simple descriptions of people and objects using basic phrases and sentences. You are required to ask the examiner at least one very simple question about personal details. 

In addition to the items listed for the previous grade, the candidate is expected to demonstrate the following communicative skills and meet the language requirements listed below during the examination:

  • Understand short, simple questions, requests and statements
  • Respond with appropriate actions and positive and negative short form answers
  • Contribute to the conversation using memorised phrases and short statements
  • Use a basic range of words and simple phrases related to personal details and situations
  • Ask for very basic personal information, e.g. about possessions 

Click here to read more details about this exam.

Click on this link to watch two videos of candidates taking this exam. 

Grade 3 – (7 mins) You are expected to link groups of words with simple connectors e.g. My brother’s tall and he’s got black hair. In the examination candidates are required to ask the examiner at least one question about everyday life. 

In addition to the items listed for the previous grades, the candidate is expected  to demonstrate the following communicative skills and meet the language requirements listed below during the examination:

  • Show understanding by responding appropriately to simple questions and requests
  • Use basic sentence patterns and phrases to communicate limited information related to simple everyday situations
  • Exchange basic information about everyday life and activities by asking and answering simple questions
  • Link groups of words in a very simple way using and, and then

Click on 'Gd3 Rossitsa' to watch an example video of a candidate taking this exam.

Please see the summary of language requirements for Grades 1-3 (This outlines the language functions, grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation expected at this level. The language requirements for each of the 12 Grades is clearly shown in the GESE Syllabus.

We strongly recommend that you read the GESE Initial stage section of the GESE Syllabus in order to be fully prepared.

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