CAE Exam Overview

C1 Advanced, formerly known as Cambridge English Advanced (CAE), is one of the popular English proficiency tests for students aspiring to go abroad. 

CAE is accepted by more than 9,000 universities and organisations worldwide. The US, UK, and Canada accept C1 Advanced or CAE for admission purposes. 


The cost of CAE varies with test centres. You must contact the test centre to determine your fee. 

CAE is available in paper and computer-based formats. You can take CAE at the designated test centre, and there are about 15 test centres in India. 


C1 Advanced, or the CAE, covers four sections: Reading and Use of English, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. This pattern is similar to other English proficiency tests like IELTS and TOEFL. 

At a glance: 

CAE Full formCambridge English Advanced (CAE)
CAE FeeVaries
CAE Exam ModesPaper-based and computer-based
Countries accepting CAEUSA, UK, Canada, Australia
CAE Duration4 hours 
CAE Score Range 180–199 


CAE Syllabus


CAE Syllabus is designed to assess various language skills. CAE evaluates your skills based on four sections: Reading and use of English, Writing, Speaking and Listening. 


These four skills provide insight into how well you can thrive in an English-speaking atmosphere. 

Here’s what the four skills mean. 


CAE SectionsDescription
Reading and use of English Evaluates your comprehension abilities, vocabulary and grammar. 
SpeakingEvaluates your fluency, and ability to express ideas and opinions
WritingMeasures your ability to write well-structured texts, analyse arguments and present opinions
ListeningMeasures your ability to extract information and follow up with complex discussions


CAE Format 


CAE or C1 Advanced lasts for about 4 hours. Each section is divided into specific time duration and question numbers. 

Below is an overview. 


SectionQuestion numberDuration
Reading and Use of English8 parts, 56 questions1 hour 30 minutes
Writing2 parts1 hour 30 minutes
Listening4 parts, 30 questionsabout 40 minutes
Speaking4 parts15 minutes per pair of candidates, 23 minutes per group of three


Frequently Asked Questions


Q. What is the syllabus of the CAE exam? 

A. The CAE syllabus comprises four sections: Reading and Use of English, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. It tests your vocabulary, grammar, reading comprehension, writing skills, and speaking fluency. The test lasts about 4 hours, and each section has 2-8 parts. 

Q. What type of questions do the Reading and Use of English section have?

A. The Reading and Use of English section has 8 parts and 56 questions. It tests your understanding of complex texts, vocabulary, and grammar. The question types in Reading and Use of English involves sentence completion, gap-fill tasks, and word transformation to demonstrate your language skills.

Q. What is the format for the CAE listening test?

A. You have four parts in the CAE listening test and 40 minutes to complete the section. Each part has a recording, followed by some questions. You can hear all recordings twice. The recordings can be monologues from audio broadcasts, speeches, talks, lectures, and anecdotes. 

CAE Dates 2023


CAE or C1 Advanced exam is conducted about 37 times yearly. There’s at least one CAE date available for every month. 


As a test taker, you must note the CAE dates well in advance and schedule your application process accordingly. 

Below are the CAE dates for 2023. 


CAE Dates 2023 (Computer-Based)


December1, 13


CAE Dates 2023 (Paper-Based) 





CAE Test Centres


CAE tests must be taken at designated centres. There are about 15 cities with CAE test centres in India. You can find the nearest city by visiting the official website and entering your nearest location. 

CAE Registration


CAE registration can be completed online in three simple steps: 


  • Visit the official website of Cambridge English and find the exam: C1 advanced. 
  • Find a test centre, and contact them. You will receive all the instructions from the centre. 
  • You can complete your registration and pay the dedicated fee. 


Click here to learn more about CAE Dates 2023-2024.

CAE Fees


CAE fees change from test centre to test centre. To know your exact fee, contact your nearest test centre. 


You can find your nearest centre on the official website. 

Frequently Asked Questions


Q. How often are CAE exams conducted in India?

A. CAE is conducted 37 times a year in India. There is at least one CAE date available every month. Below are the CAE dates for upcoming months. 

C1 Advanced (CAE)9, 16 December1, 13 December


Q. How many CAE test centres are in India?

A. There are 15 test centres in India, including at least one in major cities like Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Thrissur, Pune and Mumbai. You can select a test centre during the registration. The fee of CAE varies with test centres. It’s best to contact the test centre directly to get accurate exam details.


Q. How far in advance should I register for a CAE exam?

A. It’s best to register at least a few months in advance, as the CAE dates are limited, and the centres may run out of slots. Registering in advance also helps you plan your preparation. The dates are released way early, so it’s best to note them and register early. 

CAE Results


CAE is measured on a scale of 180–199. Results are announced within weeks of writing the test. Once you write your test, you will receive a confirmation of entry document stating the final date of your results. 

The tentative result dates are shown below. 


CAE Computer-based results2-3 weeks
CAE Paper-based results4-6 weeks



CAE is assessed at level C1 of CEFR. Your statement of results contains individual scores for all sections. Reading and use of English are scored separately even though they are merged during the exam. 

The statement of results contains your scaled scores, overall grade, and CEFR level. Below is an overview. 

Cambridge English Scale ScoreGrade/CEFRCEFR level
200–210Grade AC2
193–199Grade BC1
180–192Grade CC1
160–179Level B2B2


You also get a certificate sent to institutions of your choice within 3 months of the test date. You must contact your test centre to get a better understanding of this. 


How to view my CAE results?


You can view your CAE results online by registering for the free online results service at the test centre. 


How to send your CAE scores to universities?


The official website of CAE states that universities can view their CAE results online at www.cambridgeenglish.org/verifiers. You must share your registration number and date of birth with the institutions that wish to view your results. 

Click here to learn more about CAE results. 


Frequently Asked Questions


Q. What is a good score in CAE?

A. If you’re taking the CAE for admission, confirming the score requirements with universities beforehand is important as they tend to change with the courses. Generally, aiming for a score of 193–199 is good, as it will get you a B grade. 

Q. How long does it take to get the results of the CAE exam?

A. The timeframe for your results depends on the mode of the exam. You will know the accurate date in your confirmation of entry document. Tentative results are as follows. 


CAE Computer-based results2-3 weeks
CAE Paper-based results4-6 weeks


Q. How long are CAE exam results valid?

A. CAE scores have no expiration, so you can use your scores anytime you want. However, if you wish to apply to universities, confirming their validity requirements is best before applying. Typically, universities request scores that are two to three years old. It is also suggested you retake the exam if your scores are older than 5 years. 

CAE Eligibility


Cambridge has not released any age specifications for CAE or C1 Advanced, meaning anybody can take the exam despite their age and qualifications. However, if you wish to take CAE for admission, check the eligibility requirements at the universities you’re applying to beforehand.


Frequently Asked Questions


Q. Can non-native English speakers take the CAE exam?

A. Yes. Non-native English speakers can take the CAE exam. CAE was designed to prove your English abilities like other English proficiency exams. So, if you’re a non-native English speaker who wishes to show your language skills, you can take the CAE. A high score indicates that you will easily blend in an English-speaking society. 

Q. Is there a minimum age requirement for the CAE exam?

A. No. There is no minimum age requirement for the CAE exam. Anyone can take the test. However,  the exam does have some complex information, so it’s best if you are over 16, as it will be easier to write. Universities in the UK, USA, and Canada have their age requirements for each degree, so confirm with them if you’re taking the CAE for admission purposes.


Q. Are there any specific qualification requirements to take the CAE exam?

A. No. There are no specific qualifications required to take the CAE or C1 advanced. Anyone can take the test. If you’re applying for admission's sake, make sure you have checked the university site for any requirements. Usually, universities need you to have a high school education or a relevant undergraduate degree, depending on what course you’re opting for.

Frequently asked questions
Q. What is the CAE (C1 Advanced) exam?

The CAE, or C1 Advanced, is an English language proficiency exam similar to IELTS and TOEFL. CAE is internationally recognised and assesses language skills at the C1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). CAE is marked on a scale of 180-199. 

Q. How long is the CAE (C1 Advanced) exam?

The percentage of individuals who either pass or do not succeed in the CAE exam varies from country to country. Globally, statistics show that fewer than 5% of candidates fail the exam in its entirety. Furthermore, approximately 20% of candidates receive a B2 grade, indicating a level of proficiency.

Q. Can I take the CAE (C1 Advanced) exam online?

CAE has two modes: Computer-based and paper-based. However, both test modes are delivered at a designed test centre. CAE exams cannot be taken at home. India has over 15 test centres; you can find the nearest one on the official website. Once you have located a test centre, contact them to register for the test.

Q. Is CAE better than IELTS?

IELTS and CAE are given for the same purpose: to test your English skills. Both exams can be used for visa and admission purposes. The two exams have similar sections and test the same four skills: Writing, Reading, Speaking and Writing. Some key differences are that IELTS is more academic, while CAE is more general. CAE is valid for life, whereas IELTS is valid only for two years. 

Q. How much does the CAE exam cost?

The cost of CAE is not revealed on the official website. To get an accurate price, contact your nearest test centre. The cost of CAE (C1 advanced) can vary from test centre to test centre. You can find the nearest test centre on the website. The prices can vary from year to year, so make sure you check with the centre before you apply.

Q. Is CAE accepted by US universities?

Yes. CAE is one of the English proficiency tests accepted by most US universities. The minimum requirements, however, may vary from university to university, so check the requirements before applying. The best alternative to CAE is IELTS and TOEFL, as they are more widely accepted in the USA.

Q. Do CAE (C1 Advanced) exam results expire?

CAE results are valid for a lifetime. There is no expiration date for your CAE scores. But, many universities prefer that your scores are new, as they give a better idea about your English skills. Retaking the exam is best if your scores are over 5 years old. Also, check with universities if they have their eligibility criteria. 

Q. What happens if I miss my CAE (C1 Advanced) exam date?

If you cannot make it on the exam date, contact your test centre at the earliest to see what can be done. A refund is not guaranteed, but the test centre can help you reschedule or cancel your exam based on circumstances. The key is to inform the test centre at the earliest to have the best options.

Q. Are there any preparation materials available for CAE?

Yes. There are many ample papers available on the official website of CAE. Just visit the site, and locate the C1 exam. You will be able to download sample papers for each section. There are also handbooks and guides available for free on the official website. You can find similar materials on other websites. 

Q. How to score well in CAE speaking section?

Practice speaking regularly. Take part in discussions, debates, and other speaking activities. Engage in English conversations with your friends and peers. Speak in front of a mirror. You can also watch English movies and series to improve your conversational skills. If you need more help, you can join coaching classes. 

Q. What is the pass mark for the CAE exam?

Examiners evaluate candidates' responses in the Writing paper. These trained examiners employ assessment scales aligned with the Common European Framework of Reference to ensure consistency in marking. Each criterion—Content, Communicative Achievement, Organization, and Language—is allocated marks ranging from 0 to 5, contributing to an all-encompassing evaluation of candidates' performance.