Michigan State University Exams (MSU)


Certificate of English Language Competency – MSU-CELC

Certificate of English Language Proficiency – MSU-CELP

The English Language examinations, MSU-CELC and MSU-CELP, developed by the English Language Center at  Michigan State University, are four-section tests designed to assess English language ability at the B2 and C2 Levels of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR), respectively. Written by professional test developers, who create new examinations for each administration period, the tests assess ability in all four modalities:

  • Writing
  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Speaking

Why MSU exams

Designed to be user-friendly,

important features of the examinations include the following:

  • The tests use everyday language, that is, English as it is spoken and written around the world. 
  • A structured speaking test with descriptive, narrative and supported-opinion tasks. 
  • Each speaking and writing sample is scored by at least two raters to ensure greater reliability. 
  • A generous time limit of 35 minutes is allowed for the writing task. 
  • Discrete testing of grammar, with the candidate’s performance being taken into account in the computation of his or her overall writing ability. 
  • Vocabulary is tested within the context of the reading comprehension passages and not discretely. 
  • Reading comprehension passages feature topics of general interest rather than being academically-weighted. 
  • Previewing questions during the listening comprehension portion of the exam is allowed, and some extra time is provided for that purpose. 
  • Longer listening passages are played twice. 
  • Scores are reported for each section—Writing, Listening, Reading, and Speaking – with a maximum of 25 points awarded per section.
  • Aggregate scoring is applied in determining success on the examinations.
  • Scores are normally reported within 30 working days of completion of the examination.
  • Full-length practice test material and information on test preparation will be made available to the public.
















Each section of the examination (Writing, Listening, Reading, Speaking) is awarded 25 points for a maximum of 100. In accordance with the revised scoring policy, which becomes effective beginning with the December 2010 examinations, two criteria must be satisfied in order for an examinee to pass the examination and receive a certificate: the total score obtained from all four sections of the examination must be at least 60, and the scores from each of the 4 sections must be 12 or higher.

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