France DALF

The Diploma in Advanced French or DALF (French: Diplome approfondi de langue francaise), is a certification of French-language skills for people whose native language is not French. DALF is managed and regulated by International Center of Pedagogical Studies (Center international d'etudes pedagogiques), or CIEP and awarded by the French Ministry of Education.

It encompasses 2 independent diplomas that correspond to the last two levels, C1 & C2, of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. Level C2 is the highest level achievable as per the Common European framework, indicating competency in the French language.

If you have passed the DALF, then you don’t need to take any other French language test to prove your proficiency in French language for admittance to French Higher education institutions.

Structure of DALF

DALF C1 Level
The DALF C1 is a certification delivered by the French Ministry of Education and is recognized as fulfilling French language entrance requirements by the French universities. The DALF C1 is thus designed to propose a high-level qualification in the language to those wishing to use French language for study or professional purposes.

At DALF C1 level, candidates are called as “independent users”. This level confirms the candidate’s ability to express him or her in French language fluently and spontaneously. Candidates have a vast lexicon and possess the ability to bring out a simple, well-structured discussion without any hesitancy. The DALF C1 exam comprises of four sections.
Total duration: 4 hours

Listening/Oral comprehension: This involves recordings of interviews, group discussions, news, and so on of about 8 minutes and is played twice. Also, consists of some short radio broadcasts, such as news bulletins, surveys, advertisements, which run one time only. The maximum time of the recordings is 10 mins.
  • Duration: 40 minutes
Reading/Written comprehension: Comprises of questions that deal with a text file of ideas, can be literary or journalistic, of around 1,500 to 2,000 words.
  • Duration: 50 minutes
Writing: Involves two tests. The first test requires candidates to summarise various written documents in about 1000 words. The second test involves writing an essay with supporting line of reasoning on the gist of the document. Candidates get to choose between two areas of study: science, or arts and social studies.
  • Duration: 2 hours and 30 minutes
Speaking/ Oral production: This section consists of a presentation and a discussion with the jury based on a text. Candidates get to choose between two areas of study: science, or humanities and social studies.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
  • Preparation time: 1 hour
DALF C2 Level
The DALF C2 French Exam is administered by the CIEP (Centre International d'etudes Pedagogiques) on behalf of the French Ministry of Education. The C2 level of proficiency corresponds to an upper advanced level (mastery level) in French. Although, it does not involve exactly the same degree of competence as the native speaker, the C2 level is academically exacting, requiring abilities of a very high standard.

At DALF C2 level, candidate’s proficiency in the French language is demonstrated by clarity, aptness and fluency of expression. Candidates who have passed C2 level are able and proficient in French language and can use it for academic or professional purposes.  The DALF C2 examination includes 2 sections.
Total duration: 3 hours and 30 minutes

Listening/ Oral comprehension and production: It consists of a speech or lecture and a discourse with the panel, based on a recording of 15 minutes that is played twice.
  • Duration: 30 minutes
  • Preparation time: 1 hour
Written comprehension and production: It consists of a composition of a structured text, can be an article, report or speech, based on several documents of about 2,000 words. Candidates opt between two areas of study: science or arts and social studies.
  • Duration: 3 hours and 30 minutes

Results and Scoring

Total marks are given out of 100. The minimum passing score is of 50 out of 100. Each section is scored out of 25, for an aggregate of 100 marks per test. In order to pass, a minimum of 5 out of 25 must be attained in each section. A DALF diploma is awarded after the successful passing of the examination. 

Registration and Fees

Registration is conducted in every examination centre. To register for DELF, you can download the registration form from the site of the approved centre. Fill in the particulars and send it to the approved examination centre by post along with a photocopy of an identification proof (i.e. passport, driver’s license, etc.).

The fees must be paid upon registration through debit, Visa, or Mastercard, or cheque or money order.
To know more about the registration and fees, contact the examination centre at your place. Find List of approved examination centers outside France AND List of approved examination centers in France
on official website:

Outside France, the registration fee for each diploma is laid down by the Department for cooperation and cultural affairs (SCAC) of the French embassy and the National Commission. In France, the fee is determined by the local education offices.
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