TEF – Test for Evaluating French

Created in 1998 by the Paris Ile-de-France CCI, the Test d’Evaluation de Français (TEF) is an international benchmark test that measures your level of knowledge and skills in French. The results are valid for two years.



The TEF is officially recognized by:

  • The French Ministry of National Education
  • The Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation
  • The French Ministry of the Interior
  • The Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship of Canada
  • The Quebec Ministry of Immigration, Francisation and Integration
  • The Swiss State Secretariat for Migration



The TEF consists of 5 tests:

  • Oral comprehension (CO) 40 min
  • Written comprehension (CE) 60 min
  • Oral Expression (EO) 15 min
  • Written Expression (EE) 60 min
  • Vocabulary and syntax (LS) 30 min



The TEF provides proof of your French language ability and is useful for all professional, academic and mobility-related contexts. There are various types of TEF to choose from depending on your objectives, including satisfying administrative formalities:


  • Studying in France with the TEF Études (CO – CE – EE – LS)
  • Obtaining French nationality with the TEF Naturalisation (CO – CE – EO – EE)
  • Obtaining a French resident card with the TEF Carte de résident (CO – CE – EO – EE)
  • Emigrating to Canada (CO – CE – EO – EE) and obtaining Canadian citizenship (CO – EO) with the TEF Canada
  • Emigrating to Quebec with the TEF Québec – TEFAQ (CO – EO)

Other uses of TEF (a combination of the 5 individual disciplines may be tested depending on your needs):

  • For joining a study programme
  • For checking your current language level
  • For recruitment purposes
  • For proof of your language level


FLI – a registered test centre

Excelia’s French Language Institute (FLI) became a registered language test centre in 2012, organising sessions for…

  • TEF Naturalisation (CO – EO)*
  • TEF Etudes (CO – CE – EE – LS)

* Please note that since January 2020, TEF Naturalisation now comprises 4 disciplines: CO – CE – EO – EE

TEF sessions have now been totally dematerialised, with paper-based sessions no longer available.

Unfortunately, the FLI does not currently have adequate IT facilities to be able to organise dematerialised sessions (previously only offering paper-based test sessions), and therefore a decision has been taken to suspend all TEF tests at the FLI.

However, all Excelia students have the opportunity to take the TEF Express (comprising two disciplines) which can be carried out remotely, from your own home.

The FLI is planning to resume the organisation of on-site sessions as of September 2021, and to expand its offer to include TEFAQ and TEF Carte de résident in addition to TEF Naturalisation and TEF Etudes.