The structure of the DALF C2 Reading & Writing test
Since the DALF C2 is meant to test the highest level of French, you should already have a very good level of French. However, regardless of your language skills or even your level of confidence, if you don’t prepare for the test ahead of time, you risk failing the test anyway.
You’ll be given 3 and a half hours to complete the Reading & Writing part of the test. Naturally, this begins by reading a set of documents, usually 7 to 10. These may be articles, editorials, cartoons, graphs, photographs, or any other document type.
For instance, the issue at hand will be “The changing face of schools in the 21st century” along with several editorials and graphics concerning the use of new technologies in schools. Note: in the past, you could choose the field of the subject matter between either Sciences or Humanities, but as of 2020, there is no longer a choice of specialty.
DALF C2: Reading & Writing test sections’ examples
The testing center will provide you with scratch paper and a monolingual (French) dictionary to use as you prepare.
Now, given the question and your knowledge, you’ll be given the choice between two topics to write on. Here is an example from a past DALF C2 test:
Sujet 1 :
Vous rédigez un article pour le bulletin de l’association des parents d’élèves dont vous faites partie. Vous reconnaissez qu’au XXIe siècle, l’école doit s’ouvrir aux technologies de l’information et de la communication (TIC) et préparer les futurs citoyens à s’en servir efficacement. Cependant vous craignez que ceci ne se fasse au détriment de l’enseignement de certains savoirs et de certaines valeurs et, surtout, pour des raisons financières.
Sujet 2 :
Vous rédigez un article pour le dossier Les nouvelles valeurs de l’école, publié par votre université. Vous êtes convaincu(e) que l’ouverture de l’école aux nouvelles technologies est une priorité indéniable. Certes, le rôle de l’école n’est pas de former des techniciens, mais ce siècle est marqué par de profonds changements. L’école doit en tenir compte au moment de repenser ses priorités.
Using the documents, you’ll need to choose one of these topics and write 700-2,000 words about it. Provide concrete solutions to the question and structure a convincing, well-argumented essay.
Leading up to the test, it is assumed that you already have extensive experience in formal writing in an academic context, so you may not need to spend an entire 3 and a half hours practicing writing a full-length essay at home. Instead, spend your time reading authentic French sources such as online newspapers and blogs.
There are numerous schools, including many of the testing centers themselves, that offer preparatory classes for the DALF C2 but also for the DALF C1 level. However, you may find it enough to practice on your own.
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