FCE Speaking

The Speaking test has four parts and is conducted face-to-face, with one or two other candidates and two examiners. Candidates are expected to be able to participate in discussions, express opinions, exchange ideas and reach decisions through negotiation.

Part 1 is a short conversation with the examiner. The examiner will ask the candidate some questions about their lives, focusing on areas such as work, leisure activities and future plans. Candidates are expected to respond to the examiner’s questions, give basic personal information about themselves and use general social and interactional language.

Part 2 (1 minute ‘long turn’ for each candidate, plus 30-second response from the second candidate) involves speaking for 1 minute without interruption. Each candidate is asked to compare two colour photographs and comment about the photographs in response to a task read out by the examiner and a prompt question written above the photographs. The listening candidate is also asked to comment briefly after their partner’s long-turn.

Part 3 (3 minutes) is a two-way conversation between the candidates. The candidates are given spoken instructions and visual stimuli, which are used in a decision-making task. There is no right or wrong answer to the task. The candidates are expected to express and justify opinions, evaluating and speculating, in order to work towards a negotiated decision.

Part 4 (4 minutes) is a discussion between the candidates and the examiner on topics related to the collaborative task in Part 3. The examiner directs the interaction by asking questions which encourage the candidates to broaden and discuss further the topics introduced in Part 3. The questions ask primarily for evaluation rather than for information and give candidates an opportunity to show they can discuss issues in more depth than in earlier parts of the test

FCE exam writing part 2 Formal letter- asking for info – polite questions

FCE exam- Writing Part 2 Formal letter

Part 2 

You must answer this question.

You would like to learn Russian and you see this advert in a newspaper. You would like to know more. Read the ad and the notes you have made. Write a letter to the school asking for more information.

* task taken from FCE English Expert coursebook 


Sample letter:

Dear Sir/ Madam,

My name is Emily and I have recently become interested in learning Russian as my fiancee and I are planning to relocate to Moscow hence the reason I am writing to you as the announcement in the local newspaper about the language course you provide seems like the perfect solution. Nevertheless, prior to the enrollment there are few questions I was hoping you could assist me with.

Firstly, as I have not had any experience with the language I was wondering whether you could provide class for total beginners. If so, I was wondering whether you could tell me how big the groups are, is it more likely to be a class of dozen or half a dozen students. In addition, I was hoping you could supply more details about the exact time of lessons as well as the total number of hours of the fortnight course which I’m planning to enroll this summer.

Also, would you mind sending the bank details and the final fee of the fortnight course.  Moreover, I know that your language school includes the home-stay accommodation, I was wondering how far from the school the house would be.

I hope the letter finds you well and thank you in advance for your reply.

I look forward to hearing from you in due course.

Yours faithfully,

Emily Kruszewska


FCE Writing Part 2 Article A

Part 2

You’ve noticed the following announcement in an English- language magazine.

Articles wanted:

A really special holiday

Have you ever had a really special holiday? Where did you go? What did you do there? 

Write us an account of your holiday

The best article will be published in the magazine

Write your article in 140- 190 words in an appropriate style on the separate answer sheet.

Sample answer:

A really special holiday

You wouldn’t believe but it was not until spring 2011 that I’ve had the truly magnificent vacation ever. A childhood friend of mine Monika massively contributed to the life changing holiday we spent backpacking in India.

Prior to booking the flights we had investigated the ideal time to travel on the east coast and soon after we were taking off at the Heathrow airport. I had no idea what to expect as apart from the accommodation for just one night in Mumbai nothing else was arranged. Scared of the unknown, I quickly got used to the spicy food, unbearable heat, humidity, that made you gasp for fresh air, and annoying, loud horns on the street. It has been totally spontaneous four weeks of total immersion in Indian culture, which I loved.

We have covered staggering eight thousand kilometers while sleeping on numerous overnight coached and trains. Meeting locals, attending events, such as weddings or funerals made us understand that our world is an amazing and diverse place.

My holiday in India and its influence on my life has totally changed me as a person. So, if you’re looking to spend amazingly adventurous time while completely shifting your mindset, backpacking in India is the answer.


FCE exam writing part 2 Formal letter

FCE exam- Writing Part 2 Formal letter

formal email science club fce expert p 72

* task taken from FCE English Expert coursebook 


Sample letter:

Dear Sir/ Madam,

My name is Emily and I am a secretary of the Middlesex Science Club. Reading your advert in the newspaper caused a heated discussion amongst club’s members hence we wish to visit and learn more about exhibits. Nevertheless, prior to our tour I was hoping you could answer few questions please.

Firstly, we are a group of fifty passionate scientists, and so we are uncertain whether the museum is capable to accommodate such a vast number of visitors. Do you think you could confirm if it essential to book a timeslot and also how far in advance shall we do that?

In addition, we are planning to spend a relaxing afternoon while enjoying our lunch, therefore I would be grateful if you could advise whether there is a snack bar or a picnic space available in a close proximity of the museum.

Last but not least, we wish to take some photos and maybe record a video to post it on our Facebook page. Could you please let me know whether there are any restrictions in terms of the use of electronic devices such as mobiles with flash?

Thank you in advance for all your help. I look forward to receiving your reply.

Yours faithfully,

Emily Kruszewska


FCE Speaking Part 2 B

In this part of the test, the interlocutor is going to give each candidate two photographs. You’d need to talk about your photographs on your own for about a minute, and also to answer a question about your partner’s photographs.

(Candidate A), it’s your turn first. Here are your photographs. They show police officers doing their work in two different places. I’d like you to compare the photographs, and say how you think they keep our streets and neighbourhoods safe. All right? (1 minute)

(Candidate B), do you think the police officers’ job is dangerous? (30 seconds)
Thank you. Now, (Candidate B), here are your photographs. They show two types of buildings. I’d like you to compare the photographs, and say why the people enjoy living in these places. All right? (1 minute)

Thank you. (Candidate A), would you prefer living in a countryside or in a big city? (30 seconds)

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