What is TKT?
The Teaching Knowledge Test (TKT) is a test from Cambridge ESOL about
teaching English to speakers of other languages. It aims to increase teachers'
confidence and enhance job prospects by focusing on the core teaching knowledge
needed by teachers of primary, secondary or adult learners, anywhere in the
world. This flexible and accessible award will help you to understand:
different methodologies for teaching
the 'language of teaching'
the ways in which resources can be used
the key aspects of lesson planning
classroom management methods for different needs.
After taking TKT, teachers who want to develop their knowledge further can
progress to Cambridge ESOL's well-established Teaching Awards, such as
Who is TKT for?
TKT gives teachers a strong foundation in the core areas of teaching
knowledge needed in the English language teaching classroom. It is ideal for all
teachers, whatever their background and teaching experience, and is also
suitable for people who would like to teach English but do not yet have a
There are no formal entry requirements. However, anyone wishing to take TKT
is strongly advised to have at least an intermediate level of English — Level B1
of the Council
of Europe's Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) —
e.g. PET, IELTS band score of 4.
What does TKT involve?
Most teachers are likely to follow a preparation course before taking the
test but you can also prepare yourself through your own reading and study, if
TKT has four core modules. These can be taken together in one exam session
or separately, in any order, over three sessions. Modules 1, 2 & 3 consist of a test
of 80 objective questions each, lasting 80 minutes, which require you to select the
correct answer and mark this on a computerised answer sheet.
Module 1 — Language and background to language learning and teaching:
describing language and language skills
background to language learning
background to language teaching
Module 2 — Planning lessons and use of resources for language teaching:
Module 3 — Managing the teaching and learning process:
TKT: Practical — an
accessible and affordable way for you to get certification of your teaching
abilities. It is ideal if you have developed your skills and need formal
confirmation of your practical teaching competence.TKT: Practicle
consists of the observation of your teaching by a Cambridge ESOL assessor. The
assessor can observe either one 40-minute lesson or two 20-minute lessons, of
which one can be peer-to-peer teaching. The test can take place as part of a
teacher training or teacher development course. Alternatively, if you are
already teaching, the test can take place with your own class by arrangement
with a TKT centre. You will also be required to complete a lesson plan
for assessment. The template will be provided by Cambridge ESOL.
TKT: Practical includes assessment
TKT uses an indicative glossary of english language teaching terminology that
is regularly reviewed and revised to ensure that all modules reflect continuing
developments in core area of teaching knowledge. The current glossary, released
in August 2009, can be downloaded from the link on this page.
Results for TKT are described as being in one of four band scores, 1-4.
TKT band descriptors (PDF 17Kb)
This document outlines what each of the four band scores means in terms of
ability for each of the three core TKT modules.
There is no Pass/Fail. Every candidate receives a certificate for each module
TKT results are issued through centres approximately two weeks after receipt
of answer sheets by Cambridge ESOL.
Three specialist modules of TKT are available - these can be added to the
four core modules above, or can each be taken completely independently
TKT: Content and Language Integrated Learning
TKT: Content and Language Integrated Learning tests a
candidate’s knowledge of Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) and
the practice of planning, teaching and assessing curriculum subjects taught in
CLIL describes an evolving approach to teaching and learning where subjects
are taught and studied through the medium of a non-native language. In CLIL,
learning a curricular subject in a second, third or sometimes fourth language
involves best practice from a range of different educational contexts.
TKT: Knowledge About Language
English teachers need to be both linguistically aware and able to understand
the difficulties students may encounter in the language learning process. To
help meet this need, TKT: Knowledge About Language tests a
candidate’s knowledge of the language systems needed by teachers for planning
and teaching their lessons.
TKT: Young Learners is a test of the knowledge of the strategies and
skills required to teach young learners. It
is ideal if you are an international teacher working, or intending to work, in
the primary sector of education.TKT: Young Learners tests the
background knowledge related to teaching young learners in the 6–12 age range.
It also tests understanding of planning lessons, different teaching strategies
and assessing learning.This module consists of a single paper lasting 80
minutes and containing 80 questions. The test is divided into four parts:
learning and development in young learners, planning lessons for young
learners, teaching strategies for young learners and classroom-based
assessment for young learners.
Download sample papers