If you’re an international student who wants to enroll in an Italian university, you’ll soon discover that in order to do so you’ll be most certainly required to pass the exam B2 of an official Italian language certification, being it CILS, CELI or PLIDA.
Cils, Celi or Plida certify that you have all the requirements to understand Italian lectures and follow an Italian university course.
However, for some people passing an Italian exam certification like CILS, CELI and PLIDA can be difficult.
This can happen for many different reasons. Let’s see some of them.
Weak knowledge of vocabulary and grammar
The first reason why it can be so difficult for you to pass the exam Cils, Celi and Plida is that you have a weak knowledge of the Italian topics you are required to master for the exam.
Indeed, many people trust their Italian knowledge so much that they still believe that all they have to do to pass the exam for an official language certification is understanding the exam structure and taking some exam samples.
Even if this is surely an important part of the preparation for Cils, Celi and Plida exam, alone it’s not enough.
In fact, the exams for Italian language certifications are based on the six levels of CEFR.
This means that to pass this type of exams, you must necessarly have a good knowledge of the grammatical and lexical topics each level requires.
After that, you can start the specific preparation for the exam.
Not knowing the exam structure
This is quite the opposite situation of the one described above. In fact, there are people who master every lexical and grammatical component that their level requires but they do not think that understanding the exam structure and starting a specific preparation for the test is important.
If you’re one of them and think that the exam is not a big deal because it’s just a mixture of different types of exercises, you might be in for a harsh reality check.
Indeed, knowing the structure of Cils, Celi and Plida and starting a specific preparation to pass the exam is a step as important as knowing grammar and vocabulary. Let see why:
Multi-tasking and time management
To pass Cils, Celi and Plida you need to be prepared for multi-tasking.
In fact, the listening section requires that you listen to a text while you answer some questions. Now, this can seem an easy task, however, I assure you that it’s not easy trying to grab information while reading at the question, understanding it and answering it correctly.
Moreover, you can usually hear the text only two times and you’ve also some time constraints.
Time management is one of the most difficult parts of the exam to handle if you aren’t adequately prepared for it.
Let’s see why with the help of a pretty famous TV show.
Are you a fan of MasterChef? Have you ever seen a pressure test? Have you noticed how even the most prepared and experienced chefs have problems at creating a delicious and well thought dish in a short time?
Even if you’re not a chef, this is, more or less, what you have to do during the exam. You have to be sure to grab the sense of what you’re reading, be able to answer the questions and complete all the exercises correctly and be sure to still have some time left to write the answers to the specific sheets.
In short, passing Cils, Celi and Plida exams requires concentration, resistance to stress, precision and a good dose of speed to say the least.
Not addressing the question correctly
This seems banal but it happens a lot of times.
It’s true, you’ve to read the questions quickly because you don’t have much time at your disposal, but, please, be sure to understand what they’re asking you to do. This is essential.
It’s not important if you write the most correct grammatical, lexical and syntactical sentences in the world, if your answer is not related to the question, you won’t score well.
Forgetting about coherence and cohesion
In fact, it’s essential that you create a text that is clear and well-structured.
If your examinator doesn’t understand what you said or what you wrote, there’s definitely a problem.
Not meeting examiner’s expectations
Be smart. Use the grammatical structures and the vocabulary you’re expected to master for the level you’re taking the exam.
For example if, among all the grammatical topics, your level requires the knowledge of Italian subjunctive, use it! Examiners expect you to. Don’t switch to the much more informal present tense just to make your life simpler – also because it cannot always be used and you can easily go from heaven to hell.
Finally, one of the reasons why some people don’t manage to pass the exam Cils, Celi and Plida is exam anxiety.
Indeed, this mental state doesn’t allow you to find your concentration and answer correctly.
In this case, take a breath and just remember that if you’ve properly prepared for the exam there’s nothing to be worried about.
If you’re interested on how to prepare for Cils, Celi and Plida exams, have a look at Exam preparation Cils, Celi and Plida.
Did you manage to pass the exam Cils, Celi or Plida? Which were the difficulties you encountered? How did you overcome them?
Original image: photo of L’urlo by Edvard Munch