Trinity ISE II


What is ISE II?

ISE II is an English language exam for learners of English who are at level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference. You take ISE II in two parts — Reading & Writing and Speaking & Listening.

What do I get when I pass a module?

You need to pass both parts of the module in order to pass the module. When you pass an ISE module, you get a module certificate.

When do I receive the ISE II qualification certificate?

After you have passed both ISE II Reading & Writing and ISE II Speaking & Listening, you receive the ISE II qualification certificate. The certificate shows your results for each separate skill — reading, writing, speaking and listening (Pass, Merit or Distinction).

ISE II summary

Reading & Writing

How long is the Reading & Writing exam? Two hours.

Which skills do the reading tasks test? Reading for gist, reading for details, reading comprehension, understanding the main ideas of a text and deducing meaning.

Which skills do the writing tasks test? How you organise a text, your range of language functions, grammar and vocabulary, how well you answer the question, and how you transform reading texts into a writing text.

The Reading & Writing exam has four parts:

Task 1 — Long reading

How many texts? One text.

How long is the text? About 500 words.

How many questions? 15 questions. There are three types of question:

  • Questions 1–5 — choose the right heading for each paragraph of the reading text.
  • Questions 6–10 — decide which five statements from a list of eight are true according to the text —three are false.
  • Questions 11–15 — complete sentences with words from the reading text.
Task 2 — Multi-text reading

How many texts? Four short texts.

How long are the texts? In total, the four texts are about 500 words. One of the texts is an infographic.

How many questions? 15 questions. There are three types of question:

  • Questions 16–20 — choose which text matches a description — there are five questions which describe the main idea or purpose of the texts.
  • Questions 21–25 — decide which five statements from a list of eight are true according to the texts — three are false.
  • Questions 26–30 — complete summary notes with words from the texts — the notes are a summary of the four texts.
Task 3 — Reading into writing

How many texts do I read? You use the four texts from task 2.

What do I write? An essay, article, letter, email, review or report, in response to a question.

How many words do I write? 150–180 words. You can only use information from the texts in task 2 in your answer. Your answer must be in your own words and not copied from the texts.

Task 4 — Extended writing

What do I write? An essay, article, letter, email, review or report, in response to a question.

How many words do I write? 150–180 words.

Speaking & Listening

The Speaking & Listening exam is a one-to-one interview with a Trinity examiner. The exam is in four parts:

Topic task (4 minutes)

To prepare for the exam, you prepare to talk about a topic. You can choose what you want to talk about.

Collaborative task (4 minutes)

  1. The examiner reads a short prompt. The prompt has some information about a situation or opinion. You need to listen carefully to what the examiner says.
  2. When the examiner finishes reading the prompt to you, he or she stops talking. It’s then your responsibility to start the conversation. Try asking the examiner for more information or details and then respond to what he or she says.
  3. For the rest of the task, it’s your responsibility to keep the conversation going by responding to what the examiner says, adding to the conversation and encouraging the examiner to tell you more information.

Remember, it’s a discussion and it’s your role to collaborate with the examiner, working together to build the conversation. But if you say nothing, the examiner says nothing.

Conversation task (2 minutes)

In this part of the exam, you and the examiner have a conversation on one these subjects.

Independent listening tasks (10 minutes)

In this part of the exam there is one task.

You listen to a recording (about 2 minutes 30 seconds) twice. After the first time you tell the examiner in one or two sentences what the talk is about. You listen again and take some notes if you want to. Then you respond to the examiner’s instructions. For example, listen for and
report opinions, ideas, and advantages and disadvantages of a situation or proposal.

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